Orthognathic (Jaw) Surgery
Orthognathic surgery might be a term that you have not heard very often. It is not something that will often come up in general conversations when talking about various dental procedures. Just because many people do not know anything about orthognathic surgery does not mean that it is rare. Simply put, orthognathic surgery refers to surgery that is meant to correct a severe bite problem. Here at Nevada Facial and Oral Surgery, we have helped others to finally be able to have a better bite through orthognathic surgery. If you have an issue, we would like to help you as well.
What Does Orthognathic Surgery Correct? What Do You Need to Know About It?
There are several ways that orthognathic surgery can help a patient. Here is some basic information.
Often a bite problem is caused by a birth defect. If this is the case, orthognathic surgery is not recommended right away. The surgery should be put off until the child's jaw is close to being fully grown. For a girl, we will probably wait until she is around 15 years old. We will wait a little bit longer for a boy. The surgery will take place between 16 and 18 for boys because they continue growing longer than girls do.
Other reasons for orthognathic surgery could include pain in the jaw, trauma to the jaw, a protruding jaw, and breathing through the mouth involuntarily. These are a few of the things that we might suggest that the surgery can correct. Orthognathic surgery is also sometimes used in severe cases of sleep apnea.
The entire process will usually start with braces. They will be worn for at least nine months before the surgery. The actual surgery could use screws, wires, templates, or surgical plates. The surgery will last approximately three hours, and most of the time will be done under general anesthesia. Sedation could be an alternative for some patients. The braces will remain on after the surgery. They will most likely be removed after your jaw has healed, although in some cases we may leave them on a little bit longer.
After the surgery, you should use ice packs to keep the swelling down. You will also want to stick to foods that are easy to eat while you are healing. We might give you a prescription for an antibiotic if we do make sure that you finish the bottle. Do not ever stop taking an antibiotic just because you are feeling better; you need to take the full course for it to be effective.
With orthognathic surgery, there could be a one-night hospital stay, depending on how much work needs to be done. Healing time is normally about six weeks, but that will once again depend on the patient. Here at Nevada Facial and Oral Surgery, we can answer all of your questions about orthognathic surgery. We know that it is something that you might not know all that much about, and we are willing to change that. Call (702) 329-7554 to make an appointment. Orthognathic surgery takes time from braces to finish, but the results are worth it.