You need a stable foundation to build a house. The same principle applies when embedding implants. The synthetic tooth roots only get a good hold when the implants are surrounded by at least two millimetres of bone mass. If the amount of bone does not suffice for an implant, the oral surgeon has to reproduce the receding tissue via bone reconstruction.
What does the process of bone reconstruction in the upper jaw (sinus lift) entail?
We usually perform bone reconstruction (augmentation) under local anaesthesia at our dental clinic in Egerkingen. Upon request the surgeon can also perform the surgery with general anaesthesia. Your oral surgeon reconstructs the missing bone material in the upper jaw by lifting up the oral mucosa of the maxillary sinus by a few millimetres and filling it with replacement bone material. Depending on the initial findings your attending surgeon will elect for an internal or external sinus lift.
Internal sinus lift
Should the jaw bone just be missing a few millimetres for a stable base for the implant, an internal sinus lift will be performed. Before the operation we measure your jaw bone down to the exact millimetre and determine both its thickness as well as its location. A small hole is then drilled for the implant. With the oral surgeon’s trained eye they will know immediately how much substance can be removed in order to not damage the surrounding structures and not to cause any tears in the sensitive maxillary mucosa. Readjustment is conducted with a special medical instrument for severing bones, a so-called osteotome. Lifting up the mucosa forms a hollow space, which your oral surgeon fills with replacement bone material. Now the implant bed is ready to receive the synthetic root. The dental specialist in Egerkingen adjusts the screw-shaped implant with a tap and positions it exactly in the implant bed made for it. They then seal the wound with a tension-free thread. After about eight months they reopen the treated area and give it an elegant crown.
External sinus lift
Should the jaw bone acquire more than three millimetres in height, Dr. Sleiter will opt for the external sinus lift. The external sinus lift process has major similarities with the aforementioned process. The significant difference lies in the path of access through the mucosa and the upper jaw bone. Your oral surgeon will open up the maxillary cavity through a small window on the outside, carefully lift the maxillary mucosa, and fill the hollow space with a bone reconstruction mass.
What does bone reconstruction in the lower jaw entail?
Reconstruction of the lower jaw bone requires a bone transplant. Depending on the indication, your oral surgeon will extract a bone block from the chin or pelvic region and embed it in the receding (atrophied) area of the lower jaw. Dr. Sleiter then fastens the bone transplant with special metal screws and sews up the wound to keep out bacteria. It takes about eight months for the wound to mend after bone reconstruction.