Orthognathic surgery, also known as corrective jaw surgery, is a procedure performed for patients whose jaws do not meet correctly which creates an improper bite and misalignment of the jaw. This improper bite can be caused by irregular skeletal growth and often makes it difficult to eat and speak properly; it may also increase the chances for temporomandibular joint disorders (TMJ syndrome) to develop.
The most common problems that patients face include the under- or over-development of the jaw and misaligned teeth, resulting in overbites or underbites. For some individuals, the problem can be corrected without jaw surgery through the use of orthodontics. If the problem is severe, though, the orthodontist will need to work with an oral surgeon to correct the bite with orthognathic surgery.
While the goal of orthognathic surgery is to correct the functional problem with the jaw, this procedure also results in improved aesthetics and facial proportions. Patients who opt to undergo corrective jaw surgery can expect to see a multitude of benefits, including
- Improved chewing, speech, and respiratory function
- Decreased likelihood of short-term and long-term relapse
- Enhanced facial harmony, balance, and aesthetic appearance
- Minimal treatment time
Dr. Amir Marashi, Dr. Jesse Ricciuti, and the surgical staff at Greater Charlotte Oral & Facial Surgery are uniquely trained and proficient at performing corrective jaw surgery and thoroughly enjoy seeing the positive transformations that result from orthognathic treatment.
Why do I need orthognathic surgery?
Misaligned jaws can cause a number of problems inside the mouth and to the facial structure, including
- The inability to properly chew and grind food
- Digestive problems
- Dental crowding
- Poor oral hygiene
- Increased risk of dental cavities and periodontal disease
- Shorter tooth lifespan
- Snoring and sleep apnea
- The inability to fully close the lips
- Heavy breathing
- Impaired speech function
- Poor facial aesthetics
Many of these problems can have serious consequences on the overall health of the mouth and face. Therefore, it is very important to ensure that irregularities of the jaw are diagnosed and treated early to temper the risks of this condition.
Am I a candidate for corrective jaw surgery?
Many patients who are candidates for orthognathic surgery are already aware of the issue; they just do not know that there is a treatment to correct their problem. If you experience any of the following problems, you may be a candidate for corrective jaw surgery:
- Speech problems, breathing problems, or sleep apnea
- Significantly protruding upper or lower jaw
- Difficulty biting, chewing, or swallowing
- Receding chin
- Difficulty closing your lips comfortably
If you think that you may be a candidate for corrective jaw surgery, we encourage you to contact our office for an initial consultation. Dr. Marashi and Dr. Ricciuti have undergone extensive surgical training and education which makes him uniquely qualified to examine and treat abnormalities of the facial skeleton. If he determines that you are a candidate, he will work hand in hand with your orthodontist to plan and execute your procedure.
When you choose to undergo orthognathic surgery, your orthodontist will prepare your jaw with braces before the procedure. During an outpatient procedure, your doctor will separate your jaw from your facial skeleton, move the bones to their new permanent position, and secure them in place. After surgery, but before removing your braces, your orthodontist will make any small, fine corrections needed to finish the bite.
All of our orthognathic surgeries are performed in a state-of-the-art ambulatory surgery center. Either IV sedation or general anesthesia will be used during the procedure, and the type of sedation chosen will depend on the severity of the condition and the patient’s preference. Dr. Marashi and Dr. Ricciuti perform a wide range of procedures to achieve complete restoration of the entire facial and jaw structures. Our goal is to give you both the appearance you desire and the function you need.
If you think you may be in need of this procedure, we invite you to schedule a consultation at one of our offices in Charlotte or Gastonia, NC, or Fort Mill, SC. Our well-trained office staff and highly skilled surgical team are happy to help in any way possible to restore your oral function.