Sometimes, a patient requires more than orthodontic correction
with braces to achieve the most optimal result.
Depending on the treatment diagnosis, Dr. Jusino may recommend a
consultation with an Oral Surgeon to discuss the best plan of
correction. Should Dr. Jusino refer you to an Oral Surgeon
for an evaluation, our office will provide the Oral Surgeon
relative information prior to your consultation appointment,
including a copy of the digital panoramic x-ray and digital
photographs. A referral outlining Dr. Jusino's examination
diagnosis and treatment recommendation will also be forwarded to
the Oral Surgeon's office. Dr. Jusino has successfully
treated many patients who have required a combination of braces
and orthognathic surgery.
What is Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery?
An oral and
maxillofacial surgeon diagnoses and treats a wide range of
problems related to the face, mouth, teeth and jaws. The
specialty encompasses a background in dentistry and medicine,
and requires an additional 4-7 years of hospital-based training
after dental school.
What is orthognathic surgery?
Orthognathic surgery is surgery performed on the bones of the
jaws to change their positions. Orthognathic surgery is
corrective facial surgery where deformities of the jaw exist.
It may be indicated for functional, cosmetic, or health reasons.
It is surgery commonly done on the jaws in conjunction with
orthodontic treatment, which straightens the teeth.
How do I know if I need orthognathic surgery?
Facial imbalances are often present and sometimes recognized by
the untrained eye. People with large jaws, or chins, or
small jaws or chins, teeth which don't fit together, eyeballs
which appear bulging and flat cheekbones are examples of facial
characteristics that may be improved by orthognathic surgery.
Sometimes, the differences are so subtle that only a trained
specialist can recognize them. The Orthodontist or Oral
Maxillofacial Surgeon recognizes the need for surgical
repositioning of segments of facial bones or teeth. An
evaluation by such a specialist will often easily determine if
you are a candidate for this type of surgery.
Will I have to have orthodontics?
In most cases where
the jaws are being moved, comprehensive orthodontic movement of
the teeth may be necessary to prepare the teeth for optimal
occlusion of biting positions. Following surgery, there is
often a short period of orthodontics for subtle and fine
detailing of the tooth positions.
What is the surgery like?
orthognathic surgery procedures can be done in the surgeon's
office, but most often they are done in the hospital.
Surgery usually lasts three to four hours during which time you
are completely asleep. While you are asleep, incisions are
made on the inside of your mouth to expose the bones to be cut.
The procedures are then carried out. Screws are used to hold the
bones and the teeth are not usually wired together at all.
The incisions are closed with sutures, and you are ready for
How long does recovery last?
The length of
recovery in the hospital may vary from one to three days
following surgery. During the week following surgery,
activities should be limited. All strenuous activities and
heavy exercise should be avoided the first month after surgery.
Swelling is common, and a brief period of facial discoloration
is possible. Often, orthognathic surgery is easier to
recover from than the extraction of impacted wisdom teeth.
What if I don't have the surgery?
Facial and dental imbalances have influences on function, health
and appearance. Not treating a functional problem may
prevent you from being able to bite and chew your food, close
your lips together, and to speak clearly. The health of
the teeth, gums and particularly the jaw joint (TMJ) may be in
jeopardy if surgery is not done. While not often a primary
reason for orthognathic surgery, the appearance of your face may
be made to look more balanced or normal. One's facial
appearance can influence one's quality of life in many ways.
Information provided by Dr. Frederic L. Bonine - Oral Surgeon
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