Corrective jaw surgery, or orthognathic surgery, is one procedure you may need as an orthodontic patient. During this procedure, the jaws are moved into more optimal positions for function, resulting in a healthier bite and more attractive smile. Because moving the jaws also moves the teeth, this surgery is usually performed in conjunction with orthodontic treatment to ensure the teeth are properly positioned after surgery. It kind of goes together like peanut butter and jelly! 🙂
People who’ve undergone jaw surgery enjoy many benefits, including an improved ability to chew, speak, and breathe. This surgery can also dramatically enhance your facial appearance.
Who May Need Jaw Surgery?
While Dr. Herman can correct many teeth and bite problems with braces and rubber band wear, more extreme issues related to the alignment of the jaws may require corrective jaw surgery to remedy. Serious jaw misalignment problems can come about through injury or congenital defects. Most commonly, though, misalignment results from the upper and lower jaws growing at different rates.
If you are experiencing any of the following conditions or symptoms, you may be a candidate for jaw surgery:
- Problems with biting, chewing or swallowing
- Chronic jaw or jaw joint (TMJ) pain and headaches
- Tooth surfaces which are excessively worn down
- Open bite (when the upper and lower teeth do not come together when the mouth is closed)
- Asymmetrical facial appearance
- Birth defect or facial injury
- A receding chin or protruding jaw
- Difficulty closing the lips completely without effort
- Chronic mouth breathing and dry mouth
- Sleep apnea
What to Expect during Jaw Surgery
While every case is unique, Dr. Herman and out team can provide you with a general overview of what it’s like to undergo orthognathic surgery. The first step in the process involves a collaboration between your family dentist, Dr. Herman, and your oral surgeon. Together, these professionals will devise an individualized treatment plan, which may include orthodontic treatment along with your surgery.
The plan is meticulously designed using diagnostic images, 3D models, and advanced computer software. Thanks to innovations in computer imaging software, you may even be able to see what you will look like once treatment is completed.
The actual jaw surgery may take place in a hospital or office setting and will utilize the most appropriate type of anesthesia. After the surgery, you can typically control minor pain and swelling with an over-the-counter or prescription pain medication. You will be closely monitored at every stage of your treatment plan, including the time following surgery.
Contact Your Trusted Orthodontist
Undergoing jaw surgery (or orthognathic surgery) can provide you with improved jaw function and a more attractive smile. If you have any questions or concerns about corrective jaw surgery, please reach out to us at (918) 492-4822. We’re always happy to speak with you. If you would like to schedule a FREE consultation with us, please schedule online at https://drhermanbraces.com/free-consult/