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Orthognathic Surgery

Orthognathic Surgery

Orthognathic surgery is needed when jaws don't meet correctly and/or teeth don't seem to fit with the jaws. Teeth are straightened with orthodontics, and corrective jaw surgery repositions misaligned jaws. This often not only improves facial appearance, but also ensures that teeth meet correctly and function properly.

Who Needs Orthognathic Surgery?

People who can benefit from orthognathic surgery include those with an improper bite or jaws that are positioned incorrectly. Jaw growth is a gradual process and, in some instances, the upper and lower jaws may grow at different rates. The result can be a host of problems that can affect chewing function, speech, long-term oral health, and appearance. Injury to the jaw and birth defects can also affect jaw alignment. While orthodontics alone can correct bite problems if only the teeth are involved, orthognathic surgery may be required if the jaws also need repositioning.

See animated image of an improper bite (pop-up)

Difficulty in the following areas should be evaluated:

  • Difficulty in chewing, biting or swallowing
  • Speech problems 
  • Chronic jaw pain
  • Open bite 
  • Protruding jaw 
  • Breathing problems

Any of these can exist at birth or may be acquired after birth as a result of hereditary or environmental influences or, trauma to the face. Before any treatment begins, a consultation will be held to perform a complete examination with x-rays. During the pre-treatment consultation process, feel free to ask any questions that you have regarding your treatment. When you are fully informed about the aspects of your care, you and your dental team will make the decision to proceed with treatment together.

If you are a candidate for Corrective Jaw Surgery, Dr. Whittaker will work closely with your dentist and orthodontist during your treatment. The actual surgery can move your teeth and jaws into a new position that results in a more attractive, functional and healthy dental-facial relationship.

Facial Trauma

Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons are trained, skilled and uniquely qualified to manage and treat Facial Trauma.

Also see:

TMJ (temporomandibular joint) disorders

Wisdom Teeth

Dental Implants

Minor/Major Bone Grafting

Oral Pathology


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