Apicectomy Arlington VA
Root canal treatments are generally very effective. However, there are instances when they can fail. When a tooth becomes infected after already being treated with a root canal, Dr. Layth Ghanim may recommend an apicectomy. This procedure involves removing the tip of your dental root to prevent any infections from returning and causing damage to your tooth.
Why is an Apicectomy Needed?
There are several reasons why an apicectomy may be needed. They include the following:
- Overfilling the root. If too much root filling material is placed in the root during a root canal, it could overextend. The end of the root could develop an infection.
- Underfilling the root. This is the opposite problem, but still a problem nonetheless. if the root is underfilled, the dental pulp may remain. This again could cause an infection at the end of the root.
- Sharp curves in the tooth. A sharp curve could make it impossible for the dentist to remove all the pulp in the tooth. This could lead to infection.
- Root perforations. The roots may develop perforations in the sides due to resorption or metal placed in the canals. To repair these perforations, an apicectomy is the only effective option.
- Broken dentist tool. Endodontic tools used during root canal treatments are very fine and brittle. They break easily and broken pieces could end up in the canal of the tooth. An apicectomy would be needed to remove the fragments.
- Obliterated root canal. Dentine may block the root canal of some teeth. This is especially common in older patients. This can make it difficult for the dentist to successfully carry out the root canal treatment.
- Tooth continues to become infected. Sometimes infections continue after a root canal treatment for unknown reasons. If a root canal does not solve the problem, then an apicectomy may be needed.
An apicectomy is performed under some sort of sedation, so you should not feel any pain. Generally, a local anesthetic is used. Your dentist will make a small hole in the gum over the root of the tooth. This serves as a “window” to expose the root so the dentist knows how much of the tooth’s root to remove.
The dentist uses a drill to remove the portion of the root. He or she will also remove any infected tissues. The dentist may then decide to add medicated filling material into the tooth’s canal. Once the procedure is complete, the gum is moved back into place and several stitches are used to reconnect the gums. These stitches typically dissolve in several days and help with recovery.
What to Expect After an Apicectomy
It could take up to a week to recover from an apicectomy. Expect some pain and swelling during this time. Your dentist will likely prescribe some strong pain relievers. The bone around the affected tooth could take up to six months to fully heal.
Contact Us Today
If you are experiencing dental pain after having a root canal, we invite you to call Arlington Dental Excellence at 703-525-0157. We can help you set up an appointment with our dentist to learn if you need an apicectomy in Arlington, Virginia.