Orthognathic Surgery (Corrective Jaw Surgery)
Orthognathic surgery is needed when the top and bottom jaws do not meet correctly and/or teeth do not adequately fit within the jaw. Teeth are straightened with orthodontics, and corrective jaw surgery re-positions a misaligned jaw. This improves facial appearance and ensures that the teeth meet correctly and function properly.
Who Needs Orthognathic Surgery?
People who can benefit from orthognathic surgery include those with an improper bite, or jaws that are positioned incorrectly. Jaw growth is a gradual process and in some instances, the upper and lower jaws may grow at different rates. The result can be a host of problems that may affect chewing function, speech, or long-term oral health and appearance. Injury to the jaw and birth defects can also affect jaw alignment. Orthodontics alone, can correct bite problems when only the teeth are involved. Orthognathic surgery may be required for the jaws when re-positioning is necessary.
Difficulty in the following areas should be evaluated:
- Difficulty with chewing, biting, or swallowing
- Speech problems
- Chronic jaw or TMJ pain
- Open bite
- Protruding jaw
- Breathing problems
Any of these symptoms can exist at birth or acquired after birth as a result of hereditary or environmental influences; such as a result of trauma to the face. Before treatment begins, a consultation will be held to perform a complete examination with x-rays. During the pre-treatment consultation, this is the perfect time for patients, parent/guardians to ask as many questions as they have regarding this type of treatment. We fully believe that when patients are informed about a procedure, the entire dental team will be able to offer the highest quality of care resulting in the desired outcome.
If you are a candidate for corrective jaw surgery, Dr. Kalant, Dr. Pink or Dr. Garrett will work closely with your dentist and orthodontist to set up a treatment plan for your course of action. This may take a few visits to our office to obtain the necessary records and pictures needed to work up your case. Orthognathic (corrective jaw) surgery can move your teeth and jaws into a new position that results in a more attractive, functional, and healthy dental-facial relationship.
Corrective Jaw Surgery Photos:
Technology & Orthognathic Surgery (for our patients)
Our doctors use modern computer-aided techniques such as, VSP (Virtual Surgical Planning) through 3D Systems. Their unmatched expertise delivers accuracy utilizing this technique to show exactly how your surgery will be approached. In addition, the software offers comprehensive facial x-rays and computer video imaging and 3-D modeling, which has greatly improved how our doctors plan and execute your surgery. During the work-up process, our doctors will be able to show you how your bite will be improved utilizing the VSP software offering a comprehensive 3D model of how you will look after surgery. VSP helps our patients understand the surgical process from beginning to end.
What to Expect
- Corrective jaw surgery is a significant intervention requiring many months of preparation.
- The surgery is performed in the hospital and can last between four to six hours.
- Hospital stays of one to three days are normal.
- Braces are maintained during surgery and may need to be removed six to twelve months after surgery.
- The greatest impact of orthognathic surgery is the recovery phase.
- Patients typically may be off work/school from two weeks to one month after surgery.
- Return to normal chewing function may take 2 months and full function may take one year.
- Our goal is to ensure you are well taken care of both during and after surgery.
- Weekly appointments are required for up to two months post surgery.