Surgically Correct Bite Problems and Misalignment
Orthognathic surgery, also called jaw surgery, treats severe jaw problems, such as underbites, overbites, and crossbites. Any form of jaw dysfunction can cause problems eating, speaking, or breathing, but jaw surgery has the potential to improve and even eliminate these issues. Jaw surgery can also restore facial balance, improve the function of the teeth, and help with speech impairments.
Do I Need Jaw Surgery?
Problems with jaw function usually result from a disjointed development of the upper and lower jaws. Jaw misalignment can happen if one jaw develops faster than the other. Minor bite misalignments are sometimes treatable with orthodontics, such as a mouth guard, but more severe cases often require surgery. You may be a candidate for jaw surgery if you are experiencing:
- An uneven bite or constant bite problems
- Chronic jaw pain
- Difficulty chewing food
- Trouble opening or closing the mouth
- Breathing issues
- Receding chin and lower jaw
- Trauma to the face
- Involuntary mouth breathing
The Benefits of Jaw Surgery
Jaw surgery can dramatically improve your health and quality of life by correcting the position of your jaws. It can help eliminate discomfort as well as provide the following benefits:
- Improve breathing ability
- Improve chewing function
- Correct tooth alignment
- Prevent excessive tooth wear/damage
- Improve facial harmony and aesthetics
Corrective jaw surgery is a collaborative effort between our office and your orthodontist. This teamwork allows us to provide you with optimal—and even life-changing—results. We will discuss in detail every aspect of treatment at your first appointment to ensure you understand what to expect. We will take 3D CBCT scans of your face and mouth, as well as discuss your anesthesia and sedation options.
The process usually begins with braces. Your orthodontist will help your teeth shift into their proper position, which helps prepare your jaws for surgery. Typically, the braces must be worn for 18–24 months.
In the middle of your orthodontic treatment, our team will perform your surgical procedure. While you are under sedation, your oral surgeon will carefully separate your jaws and reposition them to be properly aligned, using small screws and plates to keep them in place. After treatment, your jaws will take several months to heal, but you will slowly notice improvements in your ability to speak, eat, smile, and breathe.
Hear From Orthognathic Surgery Patients
These patients can tell you about the firsthand experience undergoing orthognathic surgery at our office.