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The Sinus Lift Procedure

Digital image of x-ray human head, mandible highlighted
If you’d like to get dental implants, but you’ve been told that your upper sinus cavity is too low, a sinus lift, otherwise known as sinus augmentation, may improve your candidacy. This oral surgery is a bone grafting procedure that adds mass to the upper jaw, at the floor of the sinus cavity. It thickens the bone so that the implants will not penetrate the sinus cavity. In addition to improving implant candidacy, a sinus lift may be necessary to restore lost bone after tooth loss or gum disease. The procedure should not have an effect on breathing, allergies, or any other sinus-related issue. To find out if you are a good candidate for a sinus lift, contact our Lincoln, NE practice to schedule a consultation with Dr. Andrew R. Glenn.

Preparing for Sinus Lift Surgery

Before surgery is recommended, you’ll need a thorough dental examination, with x-rays and a CT scan. If you are a good candidate for the procedure, Dr. Glenn will discuss bone graft sources with you. Options include autogenous bone (from your body), allogeneic bone (from a human cadaver), or xenograft (from a cow). Patients who suffer from allergies should schedule the procedure during a season when their allergies are not active.

About the Procedure

The day of your sinus lift surgery, you’ll be escorted to a surgical suite in the oral surgeon’s office. The procedure is performed on an outpatient basis, so you’ll be able to go home the same day. Anesthetic and possibly sedation will be administered for your comfort. A few different techniques may be employed to lift the sinus floor. An incision will be made in the upper jaw to access the sinus cavity. After gently lifting the sinus membrane, the surgeon will place your prepared bone graft below it, to stimulate bone growth in the area. Then the incision site will be closed with sutures.

Recovery and Follow-Up

In some cases, a sinus lift can be performed just before implants are placed, but oftentimes, a bone graft needs to be given time to mature prior to implant placement. Expect complete healing to take four to 12 months. If you are seeking implants, your dentist or oral surgeon should be able to inform you whether you’re a candidate after healing is complete.

Following your procedure, expect swelling and some bleeding from the nose and mouth. A saline spray will keep your nose moist, and you’ll also be provided with medication for pain, congestion, and inflammation; as well as antibiotics to reduce the risk of infection. Apply ice to the outside of your face as needed to reduce swelling. Brush your teeth, but don’t vigorously rinse your mouth for a few days. A special medicated rinse will be provided, as well. Plan to eat a soft diet and do not use a straw or smoke while healing. Most patients do not have significant discomfort and can return to work within two days. You should not blow your nose or sneeze for four weeks, to reduce the risk of complications. At seven to 10 days, you’ll visit the oral surgeon for a follow-up examination.

Schedule a Consultation Today

To learn more about sinus lifts and bone grafting procedures, contact our oral and maxillofacial surgery office to schedule your consultation.

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Lincoln Office

Open Today 7:00am-5:00pm All hours

3401 Plantation Dr Ste 100
Lincoln, NE 68516

Directions (402) 421-3401

My anxiety has been through the roof the past 3 weeks but I would have never imagined it could be so easy. Thank you Dr Glenn! He has made the whole experience amazing! If you are looking for a knowledgable, caring and talented surgeon, look no further! Dr. Andrew Glenn is awesome! I have never been a fan of the dentist's office!!!
Wanda Moses
June 2016

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