Most orthodontic cases could be corrected by braces alone. However, in severe cases, the jaw bones, which are the foundation of the teeth, might not match each other and a surgery is needed to correct the condition.
The surgery is performed by an oral and maxillofacial surgeon in collaboration with an orthodontist. It often includes braces before and after surgery, and retainers after the final removal of braces.
Orthognathic surgery is often needed after reconstruction of cleft palate or other facial anomalies. Careful coordination between the surgeon and orthodontist is essential to ensure that the teeth will fit correctly after the surgery.
What are the reasons that my jaws don’t match?
Genetic is a strong factor in establishing the size and shape of each jaw. The mismatch might run in families like the habsburg family in Germany. Other factors include alcoholism and drugs during pregnancy as well as trauma to the face.
Why do I have to have a surgery?
When the jaw problem started to affect functions such as breathing, chewing, pronunciation and/or the jaw joints, then the surgery will prevent further damage to these structures and will provide a better foundation for the patient to function properly
What is the best time to do the surgery?
Most of the surgeries are performed when patients are one growing. This is usually around the age of 18-19 for girls and 20-21 for boys. The doctor will take few x-rays every 6 months to determine the readiness for the surgery
On the other hand, if severe functional problem exists, then it might be recommended to do the surgery earlier
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Left: strong lower jaw that was corrected with surgery
Right: an old German coin showing the hereditary jaw in this family
Case 1corrected with braces and surgery
Case 2 corrected with braces and surgery