Corrective Jaw Surgery in Texas
When the upper and lower jaw aren’t properly aligned or teeth don’t seem to fit correctly with the jaws, problems can arise, including issues with speech, TMJ dysfunction, breathing difficulty, a receding or protruding jaw, and teeth that don’t meet in the front. Orthognathic surgery (jaw surgery) resolves these issues to promote optimal jaw function and comfort while achieving an optimal appearance. Surgery is necessary to correct these irregularities that cannot be corrected by “typical” orthodontics. Keep in mind that orthodontic surgery is only seen as appropriate after bone growth stops (typically at 14- 16 years old for females and 17-21 for males).
Jaw and subsequent dental problems can exist from birth or can arise from injury, heredity, environmental influences that lead to the uneven growth in the lower and upper jaws. Ignoring these issues may lead to or worsen the wear and tear of teeth, sleep apnea, and various issues that can keep an individual from breathing or closing their mouth properly.
What to expect from orthodontic surgery
Your Northern Texas Facial & Oral Surgery surgeon will perform a comprehensive examination to assess your jaw, including any necessary X-rays and scans. They will confer with your general dentist or orthodontist, as well, to determine the optimal solution for your unique situation. The doctor will explain the recommended surgical treatment and address your questions and concerns. We believe that informed patients make wise decisions, so we’ll educate you about the condition of your jaw and your options for care.
In some cases, your team may need to use 3D medical modeling from MRI and CT scans to help plan your surgery. This creates accurate physical models to assess important information about your bone structure. Pre-surgical orthodontics may be needed to align the teeth in each jaw.
Once assessed, the surgery will be performed in your mouth to reduce visible scars on your chin or around your mouth. Once the jaw movement is completed, the bone will be secured in place with various structures such as screws and wires to their new position, and will be integrated into the new structure over time. In some cases, bone taken from a graft may be added to your jaw. After a healing period of about six weeks, your teeth will be aligned to your new mouth shape with braces.
What can jaw surgery do for me?
Surgically correcting jaw problems can improve a variety of issues, such as facial appearance, issues with swallowing, and minimizing the breakdown of teeth while optimizing oral and jaw function (improving chewing, speaking and breathing while eliminating discomfort for a better quality of life), and a great smile.