Sinus Lifts Demystified: Preparing for Successful Implant Placement

If you’ve been told you need a dental implant but lack sufficient bone density in your upper jaw, you might be anxious and uncertain about the next steps. The prospect of needing additional surgery can be daunting. Luckily, there’s a solution — a sinus lift.

A sinus lift is one of the most common types of oral surgery and is a vital step for many patients — it prepares you for these procedures by enabling your upper jaw to have sufficient bone density.

Do you want to know more?

Learn more about sinus lifts, why you may need them, and what to expect before, during, and after getting one.

What Is a Sinus Lift?

A sinus lift or sinus augmentation is a surgical procedure that increases bone in the upper jaw by adding bone graft material to the sinus floor. This procedure is crucial for creating a stable foundation for dental implants when the natural bone isn’t enough to support them.

Why You May Need a Sinus Lift

One of the first things you need to ask is whether you’re a candidate for a sinus lift.

A sinus lift may be the oral surgery for you if the following applies to you.

If Your Maxillary Sinus Is Too Close

The maxillary sinuses are located just above your upper teeth. If these sinuses are naturally positioned too close to the jawbone where an implant needs to be placed, there may not be enough room for the implant.

A sinus lift can create the necessary space by moving the sinus membrane upward and adding bone below it.

Tooth Loss

Losing a tooth, especially a molar, wisdom tooth, or premolar in the upper jaw, can lead to bone loss over time. When a tooth is missing, the surrounding bone can begin to deteriorate because it no longer has the stimulation that chewing provides. A sinus lift can help rebuild this bone, making it possible to place a dental implant.

Untreated Tooth Decay

Severe tooth decay that leads to the loss of a tooth can also result in bone loss.

If decay has been untreated for a long time, the damage may extend into the bone, reducing its density and volume.

In such cases, a sinus lift can restore the bone structure needed for an implant.

Periodontal Disease

Periodontal (gum) disease is a common cause of bone loss in the jaw. This infection can destroy the bone that supports your teeth.

If you’ve suffered from periodontal disease, a sinus lift might be required to rebuild the bone before implant placement.

What To Expect Before, During, and After a Sinus Lift

As you weigh the pros and cons of getting a sinus lift, you may have questions about what happens.

Here’s what to expect before, during, and after your sinus lift.

Before Your Sinus Lift

Before undergoing a sinus lift, you’ll have a thorough consultation with your oral surgeon. This will include a detailed examination, imaging tests (like X-rays or CT scans), and a discussion about your medical history.

Your oral surgeon will also explain the procedure, answer any questions, and provide instructions on how to prepare for the surgery.

During the Procedure

On the day of the surgery, you’ll be given anesthesia to ensure your comfort. The oral surgeon will make an incision in the gum tissue where the back teeth used to be. The tissue is then raised to expose the bone.

A small, oval window is opened in the bone to reveal the sinus membrane. This membrane is gently pushed upward, and bone graft material is packed into the space created. The incision is then closed with stitches.

After Your Oral Surgery

After a sinus lift, it’s normal to experience some swelling and bleeding. Your oral surgeon will provide specific aftercare instructions, including how to manage any discomfort and care for the surgical site.

You’ll need to avoid activities that could increase sinus pressure, such as blowing your nose or sneezing forcefully.

Over the next few months, the grafted material will integrate with your natural bone, creating a solid foundation for your dental implants.


As with any surgical procedure, there are risks associated with a sinus lift. These can include infection, sinus membrane perforation, and issues with graft integration.

The good thing is that choosing a skilled and experienced oral surgeon can significantly reduce these risks.

How To Find the Right Oral Surgeon

Choosing the right oral surgeon for your sinus lift is critical to the success of the procedure. Here are some tips:

  • Look for Experience and Credentials: Ensure your surgeon is board-certified and has extensive experience in performing sinus lifts and other related procedures.
  • Read Reviews and Testimonials: Patient reviews can provide insights into the surgeon’s skill and patient care.
  • Consultations: Don’t hesitate to schedule consultations with multiple surgeons to find one who makes you feel comfortable and whose expertise meets your standards.

Do You Have Questions About Sinus Lifts? Contact Us Today

If you’re considering dental implants and have been told you need a sinus lift, don’t hesitate to reach out.

The team at Green Valley Oral Surgery is here to answer your questions and provide the best solution for your dental health.

Contact us today to schedule your consultation and take the first step towards a healthier, more confident smile.