AustinPUG Health

AustinPUG Health

The roots of your teeth anchor them into the bone of your jaw. Teeth may have only one root, as is usually the case in front teeth, or two or more roots, such as in molars and premolars. The apex, or the tip of the root, is where blood vessels and tiny nerves enter the pulp of the tooth through canals. All of this is securely covered by the crown of the tooth, or the portion that is visible above the gum line.

Apicoectomy new What Is An Apicoectomy?

When a root canal procedure is performed, the dentist cleanses the inside of a canal in which infection or inflammation are detected. If a root canal treatment fails or an infection resurfaces, an apicoectomy may be necessary in order to correct the issue. Other situations in which an apicoectomy is used include:

  • A fractured root that cannot otherwise be repaired
  • Branches of a canal that are abnormally curved and impossible to clean or seal

When an apicoectomy is performed, the apex of the root is completely removed. With it, any infected tissue is excised as well. The dentist then places a filling over the resultant cavity to seal off the area completely. The primary purpose of the procedure is to save the tooth from extraction and to relieve any pain the patient may be experiencing as a result of inflammation within the tooth and surrounding tissues.

Before Your Procedure

Your oral and maxillofacial surgeon will evaluate x-rays taken of the affected root or roots, possibly taking more if an image from a more specific angle is required. Depending on your individual situation, you may be given anti-inflammatory medications and antibiotics prior to the surgery. It is important that you inform your surgeon of all medications and supplements you take on a regular basis. This is standard procedure for any type of surgery and helps to ensure that the entire process runs smoothly and efficiently.

During the Surgery

Local anesthetic is applied to numb the entire area completely. A small incision is made in the gum and the tissue is pulled back to reveal the root of the tooth beneath. A few millimeters from the end of the root are removed along with all infected tissue. If fractures or large cracks are suspected, a special dye may be used to see them more clearly. In cases in which the root is damaged beyond repair, extraction may be necessary and the procedure cannot be completed.

To finish the surgery, your oral surgeon cleans out the canal and applies the filling to seal the opening at the new end of the root. An x-ray is taken to ensure that the procedure is complete before stitches are applied. The entire process generally takes an hour to an hour and a half, but may last longer if multiple root canals are affected.

After Your Apicoectomy

Complete recovery from an apicoectomy usually spans a matter of approximately two weeks. Your surgeon will provide you with instructions for home care, eating and drinking habits, and medication for pain relief or prevention of infection. Getting plenty of rest is crucial during the first 12 hours following surgery in order to allow the body to heal itself efficiently.

Before stitches are removed, it is important to avoid aggressive brushing and rinsing. In addition, avoid touching the area as much as possible, as this may result in the dislodging of stitches and necessary blood clots. As always, any questions you may have regarding the surgery or the recovery process should be directed to your oral and maxillofacial surgeon.

About Author : Shanna Cramer, who has a personal interest in health and fitness.
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