Jaw Surgery & Braces at O’Keeffe Orthodontics, Waterford
Jaw surgery or orthodontic surgery is undertaken in adults to correct problems that are due to a mismatch in jaw sizes. In these situations growth has virtually ceased and growth modifying braces are ineffective. Jaw surgery in combination with braces is often the treatment of choice in cases where the bite problem is so severe that braces alone are not enough to correct it.
Severe malocclusions (bad bites) may cause functional problems i.e. difficulty in chewing your food or excessive wear on your teeth as well as appearance or esthetic issues. Your lower jaw may be too prominent or off to one side giving rise to an aggressive appearance. Your lower jaw may be deficient or too short giving rise to prominent upper front teeth.
Your teeth may not meet together in front giving rise to an open bite or your teeth may be overclosed where your lower front teeth are completely covered by your upper front teeth.
Jaw surgery in combination with braces allows us correct the dental and cosmetic problems at the same time. Most of us are not familiar with orthognathic surgery and are uncomfortable even fearful in considering it as a treatment option.
Dr O’Keeffe will explain in detail at the consultation if surgery is required to optimize your smile and treatment outcome and will show you numerous examples of cases similar to you which he has successfully treated. Dr O’Keeffe will also arrange a consultation with a Maxillo-Facial surgeon for you to meet and discuss your case.
Remember it is an elective procedure and you and you only will decide if you wish to have jaw surgery in combination with your braces to optimize your smile. You may not wish to choose this treatment option and if so, other options will be presented to you.
Jaw surgery is carried out under general anaesthetic usually in a Cork or Dublin Hospital where the jaws can be moved virtually in any direction to a predetermined position to achieve cosmetic and functional excellence postoperatively with the ultimate goal of producing a wonderful smile. Your hospital stay is usually one to two days depending on the type of surgery required.