Corrective Jaw Surgery
Corrective jaw surgery – also referred as orthognathic surgery – can have a dramatic effect on many aspects of life. It is generally performed to correct a wide range of minor and major craniofacial and dental irregularities, including the chronic misalignment of jaws and teeth and can dramatically improve chewing, speaking and breathing. The patient’s appearance may also be dramatically enhanced as a result of oral surgery.
Who Can Benefit From Corrective Jaw Surgery?
People who can benefit from corrective jaw 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 can affect chewing function, speech, long-term oral health and appearance. Injury to the jaw and birth defects can also affect jaw alignment. Orthodontics (braces) alone can correct bite problems when only the teeth are involved. Orthognathic surgery may be required for the jaws when repositioning is necessary.
Some of the conditions that may indicate the need for corrective jaw surgery are:
- Difficulty chewing or biting food
- Difficult swallowing
- Chronic jaw or jaw joint (TMJ) pain and headaches
- Excessive wear of the teeth
- Open bite (space between the upper and lower teeth when the mouth is closed)
- Unbalanced facial appearance from the front of side
- Facial injury
- Birth defects
- Receding lower jaw or chin
- Protruding jaw
- Inability to make the lips meet without straining
- Chronic mouth breathing
- Sleep apnea (breathing problems when sleeping, including snoring)
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How much does orthognathic surgery cost?
Orthognathic surgery or corrective jaw surgery is a procedure that straightens or realigns your jaw. It also corrects jawbone inconsistencies. It should always be performed by an oral and maxillofacial surgeon. Several factors determine the total cost of orthognathic. Some of these include:
- The extent of jaw misalignment
- The type of surgery
- The patient’s specific health considerations
Is orthognathic surgery covered by insurance?
Medical insurance companies understand that an underbite, overbite, or facial asymmetry can affect a person’s self-confidence while causing physical pain, inability to eat, or other serious conditions like sleep apnea. So yes, some health insurance policies do cover orthognathic surgery. It’s a good idea to discuss this with your dental expert, who’ll be able to advise you about which plan will provide the best orthognathic surgery medical coverage.
How long does orthognathic surgery take?
The duration of the orthognathic surgery depends on the complexity of the case. Surgery on one jaw can usually be completed in one to two hours. However, if the surgery involves multiple procedures, it may take up to five hours.
How to correct jaw alignment without surgery?
When it comes to jaw alignment, orthodontic treatment is almost always necessary. Misaligned jaws result in teeth that become crowded or tilt in a way that decreases the true extent of the skeletal misalignment. Hence, before the surgery takes place, your orthodontist will have to move your teeth into a position that enables a correct bite once the jaws become aligned. Your orthodontist will modify the bite slightly more after the surgery to give you the best possible dental occlusion.
Is orthognathic surgery painful?
General anesthesia is administered to the patient before orthognathic surgery is performed. So, you won’t experience any pain during the procedure. You might have some trouble once the anesthesia starts to wear off. The pain may last for a few days, but can be easily managed with painkillers.