dental implant sinus problems

Can dental implants cause sinus problems or headaches?

Dental implants are generally considered safe and have a high success rate. However, like any surgical procedure, there can be potential complications or side effects. While it is rare, dental implants can cause sinus problems or headaches in some cases, although the occurrences are typically minimal.


Can dental implants cause sinus problems or headaches?

Sinus problems can occur when dental implants are placed in the upper jaw, particularly in the posterior region near the sinus cavities. During the implant placement procedure, the sinus floor may be slightly elevated to provide adequate bone support for the implant. This can sometimes result in sinusitis, an inflammation or infection of the sinus cavity.

Symptoms may include:

  • Nasal congestion
  • Facial pain
  • Pressure
  • Persistent headache.

Headaches can also be associated with dental implants, but it is less common. The exact cause of headaches related to dental implants is not fully understood, but possible factors could include nerve irritation, muscle tension, or changes in the bite alignment.

It’s important to note that these complications are relatively rare and most individuals who receive dental implants do not experience sinus problems or headaches as a result. If you are considering dental implants and have concerns about these potential issues, it is advisable to consult with a qualified dental professional who can evaluate your specific situation and provide personalized advice.

What is a sinus lift?

A sinus lift, also known as a sinus augmentation, is a surgical procedure performed in the upper jaw (maxilla) to increase the amount of bone available for the placement of dental implants. It is typically done when there is insufficient bone height in the posterior maxilla due to the proximity of the sinus cavity.

During a sinus lift, the sinus membrane is gently lifted or elevated, and a bone graft material is placed in the space created between the sinus floor and the upper jawbone. This bone graft can be sourced from various materials, including your own bone (autogenous graft), processed bone from another source (allograft), or synthetic materials (alloplastic graft).

The sinus lift procedure is usually performed by a dental specialist.  It may be done using local anesthesia or sedation, depending on the complexity of the case and the patient’s preference. After the sinus lift, the bone graft material needs time to integrate and promote new bone growth, which typically takes several months.

Once the new bone has adequately healed and integrated with the existing bone, dental implants can be placed into the augmented area. The additional bone created by the sinus lift procedure provides the necessary support and stability for the implants.

A sinus lift is a common and effective procedure for patients who have insufficient bone in the upper jaw and want to receive dental implants. It allows them to restore their missing teeth and enjoy the benefits of a functional and aesthetically pleasing smile.

What is the typical time for bone healing in the sinus?

The time required for bone healing in the sinus after a sinus lift procedure can vary from person to person. Generally, it takes several months for the bone graft to fully integrate with the existing bone and become strong enough to support dental implants. The specific timeline for bone healing depends on factors such as:

  1. Bone quality: The quality of the existing bone and the density of the newly placed bone graft can affect the healing time. In some cases, additional time may be required for the bone to mature and become sufficiently strong.
  2. Healing capacity: Each individual’s healing capacity can vary. Factors such as age, overall health, and any underlying medical conditions can influence the speed of healing.
  3. Follow-up care: Proper post-operative care, including following the surgeon’s instructions, maintaining good oral hygiene, and attending scheduled follow-up appointments, can significantly impact the healing process.

On average, it can take approximately 4 to 9 months for the bone graft in the sinus to fully heal and integrate with the surrounding bone. During this time, Dr. Hervas will monitor the healing progress through periodic check-ups and imaging techniques, such as X-rays or cone beam computed tomography (CBCT) scans. Once the bone has adequately healed and achieved the desired stability, dental implants can be placed. It’s important to remember that the timeline can vary for each individual, so it’s best to consult with your dental professional to get an accurate estimate based on your specific circumstances.

Dr. Hervas is a double board certified prosthodontist, and specializes in complicated cases of dental restoration. If you are concerned about dental implants, or seeking a dental implant revision, trust the experts at Implantation Dental Center. Call today to schedule your consultation.

(954) 476-0770