Sinus lift surgery, also called sinus augmentation, is performed to add bone to the upper jaw around the molars. Dr. Cabrera Dental Associates in Houston may recommend a sinus lift if your sinuses are too close to your jaw, for placement of dental implants or to increase bone height in your upper jaw.

More bone is added between the jaw and maxillary sinuses that are located on either side of the nose. The autogenous bone may be used from the patient’s body; allogeneic bone or bone of a cadaver may be added, or xenograft bone grafted from cows. To make space for the increase in bone, the sinus membrane is lifted. A sinus lift can be done in-house. Some severe cases are referred to an oral maxillofacial surgeon or a periodontist.

Many people with missing upper teeth, particularly the molars or back teeth, don’t have a sufficient amount of bone to support dental implants. This is sometimes due to their skull anatomy; the upper jaw may have less bone than the lower half.

Periodontal disease may have caused the tooth loss, and the missing teeth may have led to the bone loss. Bone begins to absorb back into the body when teeth are gone. If they have been missing for many years, too much bone has been resorbed making it impossible to place implants without surgical intervention.

Also, if the maxillary sinus sits too close to the upper jaw, dental implants cannot be placed. Each individual has a uniquely shaped maxillary sinus that varies in shape from person to person. This sinus can also increase in size as people get older.

Over the past 15 years, sinus lift surgery has become more widely used as more patients are choosing dental implants in Houston as the solution to replacing their missing teeth.

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