An apicoectomy is a type of endodontic surgery used to treat an infected tooth or to repair damage to the tooth root. Since it requires cutting of the gum tissue to access the root, it is considered a surgical procedure.
If you have an upcoming apicoectomy appointment, you may be wondering what to expect afterwards. Here’s what recovery from an apicoectomy is typically like.
What is an Apicoectomy?
During an apicoectomy a small incision is made in the gum tissue to access the root of a tooth. The bottom tip of the root is removed, the tooth is treated, and a filling is placed over the tip of the root. If there is any diseased tissue around the root it will be removed. Any damage to the jaw bone will be repaired. Then the gum tissue is closed and sutured.
What Type of Anesthesia is Used For Apicoectomy?
In most cases local anesthesia is all that is required for an apicoectomy. It numbs the gum tissue and the nerves in the tooth to prevent you from feeling any pain during the procedure. The numbness typically wears off in about an hour after the procedure. If you are feeling anxious about having endodontic surgery or if you have dental anxiety in general, sedation options are available to help you relax.
What Can I Expect After an Apicoectomy?
Here’s what you can expect after your apicoectomy in terms of recovery, eating, and managing discomfort:
- In the first few hours. You may still feel numb in your mouth, face, lip, and tongue for a few hours after the procedure. It is important that you don’t eat during this time, because you could accidentally bite the soft tissues of your mouth without realizing it. It is safe to drink water and other cold liquids.
- In the first 24 hours. Once the local anesthesia wears off you may start to feel some discomfort in the area of the incision. Over the counter pain medication is typically sufficient, but let your dentist know if you experience severe pain. It is best to eat soft foods for the first 24 hours after your procedure, such as pudding, yogurt, jello, and ice cream. Avoid anything hot and allow all foods and beverages to cool before consuming.
- 48 hours later. After the first 48 hours you may be ready to start eating more solid foods. It is best to avoid anything hard or crunchy for the first week after your procedure to avoid damaging the healing tissue.
- 2 weeks later. About 2 weeks after your apicoectomy, your gum tissue may be fully healed. The sutures will most likely have dissolved on their own. As long as you feel up to it, you should be able to resume your usual dietary habits.
Where To Go For an Apicoectomy?
An apicoectomy should be performed by an endodontist, a dentist who specializes in treating tooth infections. Eagle Endodontics provides endodontic surgery, including apicoectomies, to treat teeth that are infected or damaged below the gums. Receiving endodontic treatment at the right time may be able to save your teeth.
To learn more, contact us today and schedule an appointment at one of our 2 convenient locations.