Dental implants are a permanent means of replacing missing teeth. In order for implants to be successful, there must be enough bone present to support them. One way of correcting a lack of sufficient bone is sinus augmentation. This oral surgery procedure adds bone to the upper jaw to help support your new implants.
How Dental Implants Work
Dental implants are a titanium screw that serves to replace the tooth root. Titanium bonds to bone naturally, although this takes a period of time. After the initial placement of the tooth root, a healing period of several weeks is necessary for this bonding to occur. In some cases, the implants are placed at the same time as the grafts. Be sure to ask your oral surgeon about the best approach to your implant procedure.
Because the bonding of the implant to the jawbone is important to the implant’s success, your oral surgeon will evaluate the density of the bone in your jaw. If you have experienced bone loss in either the upper or lower jaw, he might recommend bone grafts or sinus augmentation to support your implants.
What is Sinus Augmentation?
In a sinus augmentation procedure, an oral surgeon adds bone grafts to the upper jawbone. This procedure is also referred to as a sinus graft or sinus lift. The grafts can be made of material from elsewhere in your body or from donor material. Synthetic bone is sometimes used as well.
Adding bone grafts to the upper jawbone is a slightly more complex procedure than adding to the lower jawbone because of the involvement of the sinuses. You must be evaluated to determine your sinuses are healthy, and the procedure must be carefully performed to prevent damage to the sinus cavities.
Before recommending implants, your dentist will evaluate your overall health to be sure your implants will have a good chance of success. If you have severe gum disease, are a smoker, or have a systemic health problem such as diabetes, you might not be a good candidate for dental implants.
If you are considering dental implants, schedule an appointment with Surgical Arts to learn if you may also need a sinus augmentation. Call 817-552-3223 to talk with our skilled team.