Can a Sinus Lift Fail if You Blow Your Nose?

Woman with runny nose after sinus lift treatment

After having dental implants placed, the last thing you want to do is accidentally jeopardize your recovery process. Since your implant dentist also wants you to have a successful recovery, they will provide you with postoperative guidelines that generally contain a list of what not to do during your recovery. Depending on the nature of your exact procedure, it is often recommended not to blow your nose after dental implant surgery, especially if you have had a sinus lift. 

The main reason for this is because blowing your nose could cause a sinus lift to fail. If you had dental implants placed during the same procedure as a sinus lift, this could also result in dental implant failure. To understand why something as simple as blowing your nose could be catastrophic for your recovery process, we must look at some basic anatomy, the mechanics of the sinus lift procedure, and how a sinus lift can be affected by certain behaviors. 

Dental implants can be placed in the upper or lower jaw. In regards to anatomy, placing implants in the lower jaw does not affect as many surrounding structures as it does to place implants in the upper jaw. When placing dental implants in the upper jaw, there are a few key structures that reside nearby. For starters, the nose resides just above the front teeth. The nasal passageway then connects to the maxillary sinuses on each side of the face. In relation to your mouth, your maxillary sinus cavities reside just above the molars. 

Because the maxillary sinuses are located just above the molars, it is important to avoid damaging them while placing dental implants. This is where a sinus lift procedure comes in. 

Sinus lifts are supplemental bone augmentation procedures performed when there is an inadequate amount of bone mass in the upper jaw. During a sinus lift, bone grafting material is placed in areas of low bone mass as a way to build up the thickness of the upper jaw, or “lift” the sinus cavity. In doing so, this reduces the risk that the implants will penetrate the sinus cavity. 

Considering the fact that the upper jaw, nasal passages, and maxillary sinuses are so closely located to one another, let’s take a closer look at how these structures interact when you blow your nose. Since blowing your nose is such a routine activity, it is probably something that you have never given much thought. However, looking at what happens when you blow your nose helps to explain just why this simple activity can be potentially catastrophic after having a sinus lift placed. 

When you blow your nose, the pressure in your nostrils increases so you can force out air, debris, and mucus. Increasing nasal pressure also increases sinus pressure. Since the bone graft is located just below the sinus cavity, an increase in sinus pressure can cause the bone graft material to shift, which would cause the procedure to fail. Sneezing while holding your nose can cause this same increase in pressure, which is why you are also encouraged to sneeze with your mouth open. 

Although blowing your nose and sneezing while holding your nose are two of the most common ways that sinus pressure can be increased, there are other activities that should also be avoided since they also raise sinus pressure. These include things like scuba diving, flying in an airplane, lifting heavy objects, blowing up balloons, and playing musical instruments that require blowing. While it is usually recommended to avoid such activities for about 4-6 weeks after surgery, your implant dentist will let you know when you have healed enough to continue these activities without threatening your recovery.

Share this blog!
ONE Doctor, ONE Team, ONE Location, & ONE Fee!

No more going to various doctors and offices. Our team will be with you every step of the way, including follow-up care.

BEST Surgical/Cosmetic Results in Chicago

Meet Dr. Irfan Atcha

“I am Dr. Atcha and I focus on helping people who have been struggling to find the answers for their serious dental issues with missing and failing teeth when everything they’ve tried before has failed.”

Dr. Atcha is a diplomat implantologist and a cosmetic dentist nationally recognized in complex dental implant cases, complex cosmetic dentistry cases, digital implant dentistry, and sedation dentistry. Dr. Atcha holds dental licenses in Illinois, Florida, and California.

Dr. Atcha prides himself in making sure every patient receives first-class treatment and achieves a million-dollar smile, which enhances their self-confidence and self-esteem. His commitment to providing the highest value of care from the moment you open the doors to New Teeth Chicago Dental is evident through his patients’ impressive reviews.

I know how frustrating it is… I’ve talked with hundreds of patients, many of them get so emotional, who lived every day with embarrassment, pain, and hopelessness because of missing and damaged teeth or ill fitting dentures and partial dentures or they’ve been told they are NOT a good candidate for dental implants due to lack of jaw bone.

“These patients thought they would be trapped with those feeling for the rest of their lives, but together, we found a way, and we provided hope with the care we provided that worked, and now they live fulfilled lives, with healthy, fully-functioning, and beautiful smiles.”

One doctor, one team

Schedule Your
One-Hour Consultation

We offer one all-inclusive fee and over 2 decades of experience. With New Teeth Chicago Dental Implant, you can skip the hassle and run around. Dr. Atcha offers full transparency and the latest in dental implant technology. Click below to get started!