Prior to performing sinus augmentation, we will conduct an in-depth dental and medical health history review to determine the underlying reason why sinus augmentation and dental implants are necessary. This process will include an examination of your bite and for any indications of loose teeth, bone loss, TMJ, oral cancer, or signs of periodontal disease.
Once the underlying cause has been identified and it is determined that sinus augmentation is the appropriate treatment option for you, it will be necessary to take diagnostic exams (CT scan and X-Rays) to evaluate your bone structure and determine the precise placement of the implant. Once the optimal locations are marked, the procedure will begin with administration of a local anesthetic and/or sedation. Following this, a small incision is made in your gums. With the bone exposed, another small opening is cut into the bone and the membrane that covers your sinus is pushed up. Once there is sufficient space, the grafting material is placed and the area is stitched shut, after which the healing process can begin. In certain cases, the implant can be placed immediately after placement of the graft, but only if a tiny amount of bone is required.
Following placement of the graft, you will need to schedule a follow-up appointment to assess the height of the bone and ensure there is adequate space for a dental implant. This process can take anywhere from four months to one year. Once there is enough bone present, the dental implant process can begin. There are a range of implant types available, but in general, the dental implant process involves placement of titanium posts in your gums. Once properly positioned, these posts are allowed time to fully integrate with jawbone (osseointegration). As soon as the jawbone has fully fused with the dental implant(s), a dental implant abutment is placed, which connects the new tooth to the dental implant.
Although having a sinus augmentation performed does lengthen the time involved in having a dental implant placed, it is worth the additional effort to ensure your dental implant is strong and receiving the proper amount of support so you can continue enjoying a bright, full healthy smile.