Orthognathic surgery, or corrective jaw surgery, is commonly performed on patients whose jaws do not meet correctly, which creates an improper bite or a complete misalignment of the jaw. Some patients can correct the problem without jaw surgery, through treatment by their orthodontist. If the problem is identified as severe enough for surgery, the orthodontist will refer the patient to an oral surgeon to perform orthognathic surgery.
Why do I need corrective jaw surgery?
Misaligned jaws can cause many problems affecting the mouth and facial structure, including
- Dental crowding
- Poor oral hygiene
- Increased risk of dental caries and periodontal disease
- The inability to properly chew and grind food
- Heavy breathing
- Impaired speech function
- Poor facial aesthetics
- Digestive problems
- Shorter tooth lifespan
- Snoring and sleep apnea
- The inability to fully close the lips
Early diagnosis and treatment of any disharmonies of the jaw are important to reduce the risks of serious complications or conditions.
While the goal of orthognathic surgery is to correct jaw function, this procedure also offers improved aesthetics and facial proportions. Patients who elect to undergo corrective jaw surgery typically experience several benefits like improved chewing, speech, and respiratory function along with an enhanced aesthetic appearance.
Am I a candidate for corrective jaw surgery?
Many patients who are candidates for orthognathic surgery are usually aware of the issue; however, they are often unaware that there is a specific procedure to treat their problem. If you experience any of the following problems, you may be a candidate for corrective jaw surgery:
- Difficulty biting, chewing, swallowing, or closing your lips comfortably
- Problems with speech, breathing, or sleep apnea
- A significant protruding upper or lower jaw
- Receding chin
If you think that you may be a candidate for corrective jaw surgery, we encourage you to contact Pikes Peak Oral Surgery & Dental Implant Center for an initial consultation. Dr. Kunkel has received extensive surgical training and education making him uniquely qualified to examine and treat abnormalities of the facial skeleton. If he determines you are a candidate, he will work hand in hand with your orthodontist to plan and execute your procedure.