Corrective Jaw Surgery: What Should You Know About It?

Orthognathic surgery is th eother term for corrective jaw surgery.

Corrective jaw surgery can either take place in your upper or lower jaw and can be both. It will depend on the condition of that patient who has to undergo the procedure. Another term for corrective jaw surgery is orthognathic surgery. However, how would you know if you need this surgery? What are the details that you have to know about it? On the other hand, can an implant help you restore your facial structures? You can get dental implants if you want a tooth replacement that acts like a natural one.


Malocclusion of Teeth

When you have a misaligned jaw or malocclusion, it can arise to various oral problems. The malocclusion of teeth has different types. We have briefly discussed them below.

  • Overcrowded teeth cause misalignment.Crowded teeth: It occurs when there is insufficient space for permanent teeth to grow. In effect, it won’t be easy to brush and floss properly. Moreover, this condition can worsen over time.
  • Crossbite: This condition involves improper alignment of the upper and lower teeth. The misalignment can either occur at the front of the mouth (anterior) or the sides of the mouth (posterior).
  • Overbite: It involves the upper teeth overlapping the lower teeth. The vertical misalignment usually includes upper teeth protrusion of more than 2mm over the lower teeth.
  • Underbite: An underbite is a dental condition wherein the lower teeth extends outward. The extension is way farther than the upper front teeth, which falls under the Class III malocclusion category.
  • Open bite: This type of malocclusion rarely occurs. An open bite involves outward slanting of the upper and lower teeth, and they do not touch when the mouth is closed. Factors such as thumb or pacifier sucking, tongue-thrusting, TMJ dysfunction, or skeletal problem can cause an open bite. The expert team at Melbourne Dental Sleep Clinic povides help to patients with TMJD.

Your dentist may recommend orthodontic treatment to correct the condition. If it does not work and the other treatment options, you are most likely to undergo a surgical procedure.


Corrective Jaw Surgery

What do you know about corrective jaw surgery? Do you think your knowledge about it is sufficient? If you believe you have less, this article can help you gain the information you’ll need. We also want to enlighten you about orthognathic surgery as much as we can. So, let’s get through this together up to the end of this article.

Jaw surgery is often necessary for addressing various kinds of skeletal issues. It involves correcting the irregularities with the jawbones. As a result, the alignment of the jaw and teeth will improve, together with the facial appearance.

However, the need for a surgical procedure might only occur if orthodontic treatment is insufficient to correct the problem alone. Below are a few conditions that orthognathic surgery might apply.

  • Protruding jaw (Prognathism): It is a condition wherein the lower jaw is sticking out more than usual.
  • Receding chin (Retrogenia): This condition involves a chin that slopes back toward the neck, causing jaw misalignment.
  • Irregular bite (Occlusion): It is a condition wherein there is a misalignment of teeth. Usually, it is hereditary.
  • Sleep apnea: It is a complex issue but only requires surgery if other treatment options are ineffective.

Generally speaking, there are other treatments possibly applicable for the abovementioned issues. On the other hand, if these treatments don’t work, the last resort will be jaw surgery.


Orthognathic Surgery (What to Expect?)


Doctors profoundly evaluate the patient’s condition to check if surgery is the only option. If there’s a need to undergo this surgery, it may include the following procedural setup.

  • Upper jaw (maxilla) movement forward, backward, or widening
  • Lower jaw (mandible) movement rotationally (symmetry correction), forward or backward
  • Combination of both, depending on patient concerns and individual assessment

Additionally, orthognathic surgery works with orthodontic treatment to initially reposition teeth. The surgery includes the application of general anesthesia to ensure the patient’s comfort. Furthermore, corrective jaw surgery may take several hours.

This surgery will take place in the inner mouth in most cases. However, some situations may require small, discreet exterior incisions. During the procedure, the surgeon may need to separate the jaw bone. Besides that, it may include removal or addition of pieces to address the problem.

The procedure may also involve bone reshaping. Surgeons will then reattach the jaw using screws and surgical plates. Then, they will stitch the incision using dissolvable sutures. Afterward, they might need to shut your top and bottom jaw using wire and rubber bands.



Before and after corrective jaw surgery. See the difference.Generally speaking, the patient would experience discomfort after the procedure. It will also include swelling that can last in about 2-3 days. But then again, it will subside over 2-3 weeks. Each patient varies in the recovery period, depending on their healing capability.

Typically, the overall healing process may require 9-12 months. Within those months of healing, you have to be observant of your condition. The surgery rarely involves complications, such as infection, asymmetry, headaches, and sensitivity changes.

In this case, it would be best to seek medical attention if the situation becomes uncontrollable. It would be best to address the after-issues the soonest possible time before it worsens.


Final thoughts

Corrective jaw surgery is not for everyone. In addition, the patient has to be an excellent candidate to proceed with it.



Corrective Jaw Surgery, The University of Kansas Health System, Accessed June 10, 2021,

Surgical treatment to correct a bad bite: Frequently asked questions, Source: Kirk L. Fridrich, DDS, MS, and Aaron D. Figueroa, DDS, Reviewed November 2018,

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