A Sinus Lift Can Increase Candidacy for Dental Implants

Dr. Sean Healy and Dr. Diego Hurtado can provide a sinus lift at our state-of-the-art surgical center in Santa Fe, NM, for patients who lack sufficient bone mass to support dental implants. This surgical procedure lifts the sinus membrane and creates more room for a bone graft in the upper jaw. Our surgeons are highly trained and experienced, and they work along with our exceptional staff that includes implant coordinators who act as patient liaisons to guide you through the process. Given our expertise and efficiency with dental implants and related oral surgery procedures, we are confident in providing safe, comfortable, and successful sinus lifts for our patients.

What Is a Sinus Lift?

Dr. with thumbs on a patient's upper cheeksWhen a tooth is lost, the surrounding bone begins to recede and degenerate. Because the upper jaw naturally has less bone than the lower jaw, it is common for patients to lack enough bone quantity or quality to replace the upper molars through treatment with dental implants. A sinus lift, also referred to as maxillary sinus floor augmentation, is a surgical procedure that increases the amount, or density, of bone material in the upper jaw just below the sinuses on either side of your nose to provide a stronger and more secure hold for the implants. The sinus lift is so named because it lifts up the sinus membrane to make room for the bone graft. Since dental implants rely on osseointegration (integration of implant with surrounding bone), a sinus lift can allow patients who were not previously candidates for dental implants to qualify for treatment.

Sinus Lift Procedure

To plan your treatment, we will take multiple x-rays of your mouth and jaw to better understand your unique anatomy and where the most advantageous area of implantation is. Our advanced 3D panoramic x-ray technology will enable us to evaluate the height, width, and health of your sinus and surrounding bone. When we are ready to perform the surgical procedure, you will be given anesthesia to numb the area. We also offer options in sedation dentistry to help you relax.

Once you are comfortable, our surgeons will make an incision in your gums to expose the underlying bone. He will then create a small, circular shaped opening in the bone. The membrane that separates the sinus from the jawbone can then be gently pushed upward to lift the sinus floor. Dr. Healy or Dr. Hurtado will place the bone graft material into the empty space that was created just underneath the section of bone. Then he will close the incision. The granule-like bone material will fuse with your natural bone over the course of several months, resulting in a sturdy base in which to place dental implants. 

A sinus lift, also referred to as maxillary sinus floor augmentation, is a surgical procedure that increases the amount, or density, of bone material in the upper jaw bone.

How We Minimize Sinus Lift Risks

  • Sinus membrane rupture is the main risk of a sinus lift. However, our surgeons use extreme caution and precision when performing sinus lifts, and their experience can lessen this risk.
  • Infection is a risk with any surgery. This risk is low and can be mitigated by following stringent pre- and postoperative protocols. 
  • Failed osseointegration is a potential risk, but is extremely rare. Dr. Healy or Dr. Hurtado will carefully evaluate your jaw to make sure that the implants are inserted into healthy, living bone to promote treatment success.

Schedule an Appointment

If you are considering dental implants or have been told you need a bone graft, we are specialists who can deliver the highest level of care. To schedule a consultation or to learn more about the oral surgery procedures we offer, please contact us today.

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I was nervous... but Dr. Healy and his nurses put me at ease, and he even gave me a call the evening after surgery to make sure I was ok. From a Google Review

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Our office provides services at three office locations in Santa Fe, Taos, and Los Alamos.

We have 3 locations in the greater Santa Fe, New Mexico area

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Santa Fe Office

2100 Calle de la Vuelta
Santa Fe, NM 87505

Open Today 8:00am - 3:00pm

More Info Directions (505) 984-0694

Taos Office

1392 Weimer Rd
Taos, NM 87571

Usually 1-2 times a month: 9 am - 3 pm

More Info Directions (505) 984-0694

Los Alamos Office

3250 Trinity Dr
Los Alamos, NM 87544

Every other Friday: 9 am - 3 pm

More Info Directions (505) 984-0694