Severe skeletal growth discrepancies may not be corrected with orthodontic treatment alone. Your dentist might recommend that you see an orthodontist to assess if you can benefit from jaw surgery in conjunction with orthodontics to correct your malocclusion.
Dr. Sharaf has a conservative approach to treatment and always tries ways to save patients from surgery. Early diagnosis of a skeletal problem and treatment timing can minimize the chance of having to undergo jaw surgery in the future. Still, in certain circumstances, jaw surgery may be inevitable if you wish to correct a severe skeletal problem.
Corrective jaw surgery (orthognathic surgery) treats and corrects abnormalities of the facial bones, specifically the jaws and the teeth. Often, these abnormalities cause difficulty chewing, talking, and other routine activities. Orthognathic surgery can correct these problems and, in conjunction with orthodontic treatment, will improve the overall appearance of the facial profile and esthetics.
A comprehensive orthodontic evaluation is your first step to assess if you can benefit from jaw surgery. Once confirmed, we will be glad to refer you to an oral and maxillofacial surgeon to explore the nature of the surgical correction required as well as the risks, benefits and cost of the orthognathic surgery.
If you are recommended to seek orthodontic treatment and jaw surgery, your treatment will be comprised of three phases:
The first phase commences with orthodontics to align your teeth and prepare you for the jaw surgery. The objective during this phase is to carry out as much correction to your bite and teeth alignment as possible in preparation for the second surgical phase. In addition, you may be asked by the orthodontist or oral surgeon to have certain teeth removed such as wisdom teeth to facilitate the work of the oral surgeon at the time of surgery. Once the first phase is nearing completion, you will be asked to visit the oral surgeon to assess your readiness for jaw surgery.
The second phase consists of the recommended surgery. Once the surgery is complete, you will have about a two-week rest period. Since orthognathic surgery is a major procedure, we recommend that you schedule some time away from work or school during the healing process.
The third and final phase of treatment commences once your jaw has healed. Your orthodontist will once again “fine-tune” your bite and strive to complete your orthodontic treatment within 6 to 12 months following surgery. After your braces are removed, you will wear a retainer to help maintain your new smile.
Orthognathic surgery may be unnecessary in some situations if orthodontic treatment can correct the orthodontic problem. After a comprehensive orthodontic examination, we will determine if orthognathic surgery is the correct treatment option for you. If you have a specific bite problem or have been told that you can benefit from orthodontics and jaw surgery, we will be glad to offer you a no-obligation orthodontic consultation without the need to ask for a dental referral. Simply email us at email@example.com and let us help you determine whether you require surgery or can be treated with orthodontics alone without the need for jaw surgery.