Jaw surgery or orthognathic surgery corrects alignment problems with the jaws and teeth. When braces and orthodontic work alone cannot solve jaw and tooth alignment problems, corrective jaw surgery can reposition the jaw to improve your bite. Patients who undergo orthognathic surgery can see improvements in their appearance as well as their ability to use their jaw comfortably.
Who needs orthognathic surgery?
Jaw alignment or bite problems can cause serious discomfort and oral health complications. Some jaw disorders can be corrected through simple lifestyle changes and the use of braces or other dental devices, but when these measures cannot correct jaw pain and alignment problems, patients should consider orthognathic surgery as their next step.
Improper bite and jaw alignment problems can occur for many different reasons. In some cases, the upper and lower jaw naturally develop at different rates, causing alignment problems. Sometimes a facial injury that is not treated properly can cause serious jaw problems. Often the jaw issues are present from birth because of a genetic disposition or other factors. Regardless of the cause of your jaw alignment issues, the oral surgeons at Siouxland Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery can perform an examination of your jaw, including 3D scans, to fully understand your condition and form a customized treatment plan to fit your needs.
Patients experiencing any of the following symptoms should consider having an exam with an oral and maxillofacial surgeon:
- Problems chewing, biting, or swallowing food
- Difficulty opening the mouth all the way
- Chronic jaw pain
- Breathing problems or sleep apnea
- Problems closing the mouth or lips fully
Why should I get jaw surgery?
Corrective jaw surgery can dramatically improve a person’s quality of life while also preventing future oral health problems from developing. Choosing to undergo corrective jaw surgery can give patients the following benefits:
- Improved ability to chew, eat, and speak
- Improved breathing
- Improved facial appearance
- Decreased likelihood of future tooth problems
If you are still unsure of whether you are a candidate for corrective jaw surgery, contact one of our offices to schedule a consultation. One of our oral surgeons will be able to help you find a treatment plan that fits your individual needs.
Orthognathic Surgery Procedure
Corrective jaw surgery is typically a joint effort between you, your orthodontist, and your oral surgeon. First, your orthodontist will prepare the teeth for their new bite using braces. Then, your oral surgeon will separate the jaw bone and secure it into its new position. The entire surgery usually lasts between one and four hours. You will continue to wear braces during the healing phase, allowing your orthodontist to make any final, minor corrections to the bite.
Orthognathic surgery is an involved process, and our staff’s goal is to make sure you are well cared for throughout the entire procedure and recovery process. If you have any questions about the procedure, contact our office and one of our staff members will gladly assist you.