Sinus Lift Surgery

Female dentist showing senior male patient sinus lift procedure with a dental model. - San Leandro, CAHearing the words sinus lift surgery can be intimidating, especially if you are unfamiliar with the procedure. At Estudillo Oral Surgery, we understand that. Our specialized surgeons will explain everything you need to know so that you can feel comfortable on your road to receiving dental implants.

Estudillo Oral Surgery is conveniently located in San Leandro, CA, and our oral surgeons are eager to meet with you. Naturally, you may have some questions. Below you will find the answers to some of the most common questions.

What Is A Sinus Lift Surgery?

A sinus lift surgery, also called sinus augmentation, gently lifts the sinus up while the area below is filled with bone grafting material. This procedure makes it easier to place dental implants by adding bone mass to the upper jaw bone.

Your maxillary sinus is located behind your cheeks and on top of your upper teeth. The roots of the tooth support the sinus floor. Once a tooth has been removed or missing for a long time, the sinuses begin to lose their position and drop down.

When this occurs, the bone height or the amount of bone available for dental implants is reduced. This is when a sinus lift comes in handy. Over several months, your bone will grow and fuse with the inserted bone graft material.

This added bone support will be strong enough for a successful, long-lasting implant placement.

What Happens During A Sinus Lift Surgery?

The following list describes what happens during a sinus lift surgery:

  • First, a small incision is made on the premolar or molar region to expose the jaw bone.
  • Next, a small opening is cut into the bone. After that, the membrane lining the sinus is then pushed up.
  • Then, the underlying space is filled with bone grafting material (either from your own body, a cadaver, or synthetic material).
  • Finally, after the bone is implanted, your oral surgeon will then stitch up the incision.

How Do I Know If I Need A Sinus Lift?

You may need a sinus lift if…

  • Your sinuses are too close to your upper jaw, and you need additional space to place the dental implant successfully. 
  • You are missing teeth towards the back of your jaw, near your sinuses.
  • You are missing teeth due to periodontal disease, cancer, congenital disabilities or other medical conditions.
  • You are missing a substantial amount of bone mass in the back of your jaw.

What Are The Benefits Of A Sinus Augmentation?

Listed below are a few of the benefits of sinus augmentation:

  1. Your jaw will be strong and secure enough to support a dental implant.
  2. It prevents structural changes that can occur to your face over time due to bone loss.

Are There Risks?

With any surgical procedure, there are some risks. However, the risks are minimal with a sinus lift and can be easily remedied by the oral surgeon.  These risks are as follows:

  • Possible puncture of the sinus membrane during the procedure. If this happens, the oral surgeon can stitch the sinus tear and continue the procedure.
  • Infection, although rare, is a possibility.

Will A Sinus Lift Procedure Alter My Appearance?

A sinus lift procedure can alter your appearance for the better. Depending on your degree of bone loss, which can be caused by several reasons, your facial structure can change over time. Most commonly, the facial muscles may begin to sag due to a lack of support.

A sinus lift adds bone to your jaw, restoring the support that was missing. This provides a firmer, more defined look to your facial structure, similar to what was there before the bone loss.

Aftercare And Recovery

A vital part of the recovery and healing process for sinus lifts is to keep the bone graft in place. Therefore, it is very important that patients:

  • Avoid blowing their nose and or sneezing, if possible. Either of these actions could cause the bone-graft material to move and loosen the stitches.
  • Take prescribed pain medicine.
  • Attend all of the required follow-up appointments. 


Here at Estudillo Oral Surgery, it is our goal to help you receive the best quality oral care possible, and you may qualify as a sinus lift candidate. Contact us for a consultation today! Our professionals will be more than happy to help you achieve a smile that you will love!


Are Sinus Augmentations Painful?

Generally, patients are unlikely to feel pain during the procedure because a local anesthetic is used, but they may feel slightly uncomfortable. However, after the procedure, slight discomfort is expected for a short time.

Is A Sinus Augmentation My Only Option?

It may not be your only option. Although a sinus augmentation procedure is very common, your oral surgeon may recommend mini dental implants depending on your circumstances.

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