What is Surgical Orthodontics?
Surgical OrthodonticsSurgical orthodontics combines braces to correct the teeth (orthodontics) and surgery (orthognathic surgery) to correct the jaws. In most cases, braces alone are adequate to straighten teeth and correct jaw relationships in patients who are still growing. However, once growth is completed, abnormal jaw relationships can only be changed surgically. In these situations, we work together with oral and maxillofacial surgeons to provide you with most optimal results.
How do I know if I need Surgical Orthodontics?
We will need to perform a complete examination and gather information about your tooth and bite relationships. Comprehensive diagnostic record information will help us determine if you will need surgical orthodontics. However, skeletal growth must be completed before jaw surgery can be performed. Girls generally complete their jaw growth by age 16 and boys complete their growth by age 18. Surgical orthodontics is a form of plastic surgery that corrects severe jaw abnormalities. As such, surgical orthodontics also restores facial balance particularly when the chin is either protruded or retruded.
How does Surgical Orthodontics work?
Surgical OrthodonticsProper planning and preparation is critical. First, we take diagnostic records and project how the teeth and jaws will change. Next, braces are placed to correct the tooth positions. Once the teeth are straight, the braces remain on the teeth and the oral and maxillofacial surgeon performs the planned surgery in the hospital to “straighten “the jaws. Depending on the type of surgery needed, recovery takes about two weeks. Finishing orthodontic treatment can then begin in about 4-8 weeks. Generally, braces are only needed for 6-12 months after surgery. After your braces are removed, you will have retainers to maintain your beautiful smile and new bite.
What are the benefits of Surgical Orthodontics?
The greatest reward of Surgical Orthodontics is a beautiful healthy smile. In addition as result of the surgery, the jaws and the face are in balance. The resulting improvement in appearance boosts self confidence which can have a very positive effect on your life.
Can Surgery Be Avoided?
For younger patients who are still growing, facial growth and braces combined with the growth spurt can change skeletal imbalances. If left untreated, such problems would require surgery. If you notice that your child has protruded or retruded jaws, please schedule an appointment and we will be happy to examine your child’s bite for skeletal problems.