Oral Surgery

An infection at the tip of the root of a tooth can cause discomfort and occasional episodes of swelling, gum boils or a bad a taste in the mouth. In the first instance, you will usually be prescribed antibiotics and a general dentist may remove the tooth’s nerve and replace it with a filling. If the infection persists, a dental surgeon may recommend an apicoectomy.

Why do I need treatment?

An untreated infection is likely to develop into a painful abscess or cyst. These can also cause bone loss around the root so that the tooth becomes loose.

What does the treatment involve?

An apicoectomy is a procedure to clean the infection from the bone and remove the tip of the root before sealing the root with a small filling.

How will I feel after surgery?

You may experience some discomfort when the anaesthetic wears off and there may be some swelling. Your surgeon will arrange pain relieving medication and a prescribe a course of antibiotics.

What do I need to do when I go home?

It’s important to keep the site of the surgery as clean as possible for the first few weeks after surgery. If you’re finding it difficult to clean your teeth around the site of the surgery you can gently rinse your mouth with a recommended mouthwash or a flat teaspoon of kitchen salt dissolved in a cup of warm water. This should start the day after surgery.

Will I need to take any time off work?

You should avoid strenuous exercise for a couple of days and may prefer to take this time off work. Your surgeon will explain all aspects of the procedure and possible outcomes before arranging for you to have the apicoectomy. You will also leave the surgery with everything you need for further care. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the Oral Surgery Implant Group.