A dental implant is essentially an artificial tooth root which is inserted into the jaw bone. Eventually, a replacement tooth or bridge will be firmly fixed to this root, restoring complete function to the tooth. The key to a successful and long-lasting implant is the quality and quantity of jawbone to which the implant will be attached. If bone has been lost due to injury or periodontal disease, a sinus augmentation can raise the sinus floor to allow for new bone formation.
In the most common sinus augmentation technique, a tiny incision is made near the upper premolar or molar region to expose the jawbone. A small opening is made into the bone and the membrane lining the sinus on the other side of the opening is gently pushed upward. The underlying space is filled with bone graft material and the incision is closed. After 6-9 months of healing, dental implants can be placed into the area to replace the missing teeth.