Sinus Lift Procedure – Olympia, WA

Sinus Lifting- The Preparation for Dental Implants

The maxillary sinuses are behind your cheeks and on top of the upper teeth. Sinuses are like empty rooms that have nothing in them. Some of the roots of the natural upper teeth extend up into the maxillary sinuses. When these upper teeth are removed, there is often just a thin wall of bone separating the maxillary sinus and the mouth. Dental implants need bone to hold them in place. When the sinus wall is very thin, it is impossible to place dental implants in this bone.

There is a solution called a sinus graft or sinus lift graft. There are two types of sinus lift procedures: direct and indirect. Depending on the amount of bone remaining in this area, Dr. Coppin and Dr. Easley may recommend one over the other. Sinus lift procedures are not painful and you will be comfortably numb throughout the appointment. Some patients prefer to not be fully awake during these procedures and our office is happy to offer different sedation options for your comfort.  

The Indirect Sinus Lift: If enough bone between the upper jaw ridge and the bottom of the sinus is available to stabilize the implant well, sinus augmentations and implant placement can sometimes be performed as a single procedure! During this procedure, you will not know that anything different is being done than just a regular implant placement. Dr. Coppin and Dr. Easley are able to lift the sinus in combination with preparing the site for implant placement. 

The Direct Sinus Lift: If not enough bone is available, the sinus augmentation will have to be performed first, then the graft will have to mature for 4-6 months. Once the graft has matured, the implants can be placed. During this procedure the sinus is accessed where the upper teeth used to be. The sinus membrane is then lifted upward and donor bone is placed into the floor of the sinus. Keep in mind that the floor of the sinus is the roof of the upper jaw. After the healing period, the bone becomes part of your jaw and dental implants can be inserted and stabilized in this new sinus bone.