Orthognathic surgery, more commonly known as jaw surgery, is a procedure performed to realign the jaws and teeth. Jaw surgery can be done for aesthetic purposes, such as improving the appearance of your profile or mouth, or can be used as a treatment for jaw problems that don’t improve from conservative orthodontic techniques. Double jaw surgery involves correcting both the upper and lower jaws.
At the Jaw Surgery Center of Excellence, our board-certified team of jaw surgeons specializes in the most cutting-edge techniques for double jaw surgery. If you are suffering from any of the following conditions, or are unhappy with the appearance of your jaw and lower face, please don’t hesitate to contact our outpatient surgery center and schedule a consultation with one of our expert Los Angeles jaw specialists:
- Difficulty biting or chewing
- Openbites, underbites and overbites
- Lisp or speech impediment
- Spitting when talking
- Sleep apnea
- “Gummy” smile where lips pull upward to reveal large areas of the gums, or lips don’t fully close
- “Toothless” smile
- Cleft palate
- Midface hypoplasia (underdeveloped jaw, nose, cheekbones or eye sockets)
- Mandibular prognathism (over protrusion of the lower jaw)
- Receding or small chins (microgenia)
Benefits of Jaw Surgery
Undergoing jaw surgery is a big decision, but many of our patients find that their results are so life-changing that they can’t imagine their lives before the surgery. Some of these major benefits include:
- Restored facial balance and symmetry of lower and middle facial features
- Improved appearance of profile
- Better ability to chew and speak
- Improved appearance of smile
- Correction and repair of facial injury defects or abnormalities
- Improve pain associated with tempororomandibular joint disorder
- Prevention from excessive wear and tear that can cause breakdown of teeth over time
- Sleep apnea symptom relief
- Excessive wear of teeth from malocclusions
Candidates for Jaw Surgery
Patients who have jaw problems which prevent them from living healthy lives or having self-confidence, as well as those who have not achieved the desired results from conservative orthodontic methods (such as braces), are typically the best candidates for jaw surgery.
Jaw surgery can be done upon completion of growth, which typically occurs at age 16 or 17 for women and between the ages of 17 and 18 for men.
Jaw Surgery Procedure
Jaw surgery is performed almost completely within the inside of the mouth, which means there typically are no visible scars following the procedure. During jaw surgery, the surgeon makes incisions into the jawbones in order to correct their position and secure them into place.
There are two primary procedures that can be performed during jaw surgery:
- Le Fort I osteotomy (upper jaw)
- Bilateral sagittal split osteotomy (lower jaw)
The term osteotomy refers to the excision or moving of the bone, and is a part of both of these procedures. Some specific cases may require added bone to fully correct the jaw, and in these cases the surgeon can use bone from your leg, hip, rib, or jaws to create the most natural and beautiful results.
The procedure is minimally invasive and leaves little to no scarring afterward. While some more severe cases may require a longer hospital stay, most jaw surgery procedures can be performed at our outpatient surgery center, where patients can go home the same day as their procedures.
Le Fort Osteotomy (Upper Jaw)
Le Fort osteotomy is surgery to correct the upper jaw (maxilla), and is typically implemented in cases of upper jaw issues or deformities.
There are three types of Le Fort osteotomy:
1.Le Fort I osteotomy – treatment for most upper jaw deformities
2.Le Fort II osteotomy – treatment for an upper jaw and nasal fractures or deformities
3.Le Fort III osteotomy – treatment for severe problems or deficiencies of the midface, cheeks, and the upper jaw
Bilateral Sagittal Split Osteotomy (Lower Jaw)
A bilateral sagittal split osteotomy (commonly misspelled as bilateral sagital split osteotomy) is performed on the lower jaw (mandible) to correct or realign a dentofacial deformity.
Jaw Surgery Recovery
The healing period from double jaw surgery is typically only a few weeks, although it can vary from patient to patient depending on the specific case. During this period, your surgeon may require you to wear temporary orthodontic braces throughout the remainder of the recovery period, which usually lasts between 3-9 months.
Contact a Jaw Surgeon in Los Angeles
If you suffer from any of the above jaw conditions or problems and are interested in learning about jaw surgery, Le Fort osteotomy, bilateral sagittal split osteotomy, or jaw surgery costs and other information, please don’t hesitate to contact the Jaw Surgery Center of Excellence.
You can schedule a consultation with a jaw specialist at our center by filling out our online contact form or by calling (888) 391-3219.
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