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  • Writer's pictureSheen Dental

Is There Really An Alternative To A Sinus Lift?

There is no doubt that dental implants are a predictable, long-term solution to missing teeth however they can on occasions be problematic to place, especially at the back of the jaw, primarily in the posterior maxilla region. The issue is that often the bone disappears really quickly around this area and besides this, it also happens to be where our sinuses are located. The result is that if you opt for dental implants in Richmond for example, in your lower back jaw, then there’s a pretty strong chance that not only are you going to need a bone graft, but you may also need a sinus lift.

Although it’s fair to say that bone grafts and sinus lifts are routine surgical procedures that are  carried out by any experienced dental implant surgeon, the real issue for the patient is that…

  • It’s another surgical procedure/s that they have to go through

  • The recovery time can easily be another 4-8 weeks before any implants can be placed making the whole process even longer.

  • It’s another added expense on top of the already costly dental implant procedure itself.

So is there an alternative?

Some dental clinics are now leaning towards short or mini dental implants. A short implant is defined as an implant that is 8mm or less in length and the main benefit is that due to it’s length (or rather lack of it) the implant can be attached into areas where there is less bone, namely the posterior maxilla region. In some cases dentists can also place it without ever having to manipulate the sinuses. This means that in examples such as this, both a bone graft and a sinus lift would be avoided.

So it’s a win/win situation then?

Well it isn’t always that simple because in the past, studies have shown that short implants aren’t always as strong as standard dental implants and have also been associated with lower survival rates (Naert 2002). However more recent studies (Tellman 2011) are beginning to show comparable rates of success with standard dentures. So there’s clearly some contention over their comparability.

So what’s the best thing to do?

Some dental clinics will use them while others prefer to go down the route of bone grafts, sinus lifts and conventional implants to make sure that the patient has the very best chance of implant success. The point here is that patients should be aware that there is no one ‘sure-fire’ way of having a dental implant in Richmond and each patient is treated very much on merit. For this reason a consultation is vital. To book yours, contact Sheen Dental on 020 8876 5277, or visit our website at and come and speak to Dr Harmit Kalsi and his experienced team.


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