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Orthognathic Jaw Surgery in Port Angeles, WA

3D illustration of mandible at Turella Oral Surgery in Port Angeles, WA
If the upper jaw (maxilla) and lower jaw (mandible) don't line up, it can lead to problems with biting, speaking, and eating.

Orthognathic surgery is a jaw alignment surgery performed in a series of processes that provide orthodontic treatment, including preparing teeth for jaw surgery and then recovering from it. The entire process of orthognathic surgery can take two to three years to complete, and the jaw alignment is corrected to improve the way they work and overall facial appearance.

At Turella Oral Surgery in Port Angeles, WA, you will be in the hands of professionals in the field who will guide you from step to step with superior care.

What Is Orthognathic Surgery?

Orthognathic surgery, or jaw surgery, is a procedure that aligns a person's upper and lower jaws. It is an alternative corrective surgery performed when orthodontic care doesn't work, and jaw problems persist.

This type of surgery is only appropriate when jaw growth has stopped. An orthodontist examines the jaw and works with a maxillofacial surgeon to determine an appropriate plan for orthognathic surgery.

Orthognathic Surgery Types

Orthognathic jaw surgery might be performed on one of the following or a combination of these structures.
•  Upper jaw surgery or maxillary osteotomy
•  Lower jaw surgery or mandibular osteotomy
•  Chin surgery or genioplasty

The corrective procedure results in balanced facial features by treating a jaw that sticks out or open bite and crossbite.

Maxillary Osteotomy

This type of jaw surgery is performed to recede a protruding upper jaw, treat crossbite and open bite, and reduce midfacial hypoplasia. The oral surgeon cuts the entire upper jaw to move it until it fits properly. Once realigned, the surgeon holds the jaw in its position with screws and bone plates.

Mandibular Osteotomy

Mandibular osteotomy is a surgery to correct either a protruding or receding lower jaw. The oral surgeon makes lengthwise cuts behind the molars so that the jaw can move as one unit. Afterward, the lower jaw is moved to a new position and secured with screws and plates.


Genioplasty is an orthognathic surgery that treats a deficient chin, leading to a receded lower jaw.
The oral surgeon cuts a chin bone piece and moves it forward, then secures it in its new position with screws and bone plates.

Is it Worth Getting Orthognathic Surgery?

Orthognathic surgery is a highly invasive procedure and can result in severe complications such as:
•  Nerve damage
•  Bone necrosis
•  Infections
•  Blood loss
•  Jaw fracture
•  Vision impairment

However, patients can have congenital jawbone problems or attain them later in life through injuries like facial fractures, tumors, growth disturbances, or temporomandibular joint disorders.

For such people, orthognathic surgery is life-changing and worth their time, money, and effort.

Jaw surgery provides appropriate treatment and results in the following benefits.
•  Corrects swallowing and speaking problems
•  Relieves pain
•  Corrects jaw closure issues
•  Repair congenital disabilities and improve facial appearance

Is Orthognathic Surgery Painful?

Orthognathic jaw surgery is an invasive procedure performed under general anesthesia. A patient doesn't feel pain - and certain medications and recovery steps ensure that the jawbone heals with minimum discomfort.

Before getting jaw surgery, it is necessary to picture what your jaw will look like before and after it. Knowing what's involved will make the process less intimidating.

Jaw alignment surgery is very specific and related to a person's personal goals. Healthcare providers consider overall health and guide their patients through the procedure, answering questions and coaching them about the long-term commitment.

Orthognathic Surgery Before and After

To prepare for orthognathic jaw surgery, an orthodontist places braces for 12 to 18 months before the jaw surgery to align and prepare the teeth. Then the maxillofacial surgeon works with an orthodontist to develop an appropriate treatment plan involving models, x-rays, and pictures of the teeth and jaw. Additionally, custom-made crowns and reshaping of the teeth completes the corrective procedure.

Orthognathic Surgery: Before the Procedure

Before heading towards jaw surgery, most orthodontists try to correct jaw problems using computer-guided planning, CT scans, and orthodontic anchoring devices. These treatment options may completely eradicate the need for jaw alignment surgery.

However, if a person undergoes orthognathic surgery, it is performed under general anesthesia. The patient must stay in the hospital for two to four days.

Orthognathic Surgery: During the Procedure

An oral surgeon performs orthognathic surgery and makes cuts in the jawbone, eventually moving it into its correct position. When the jaw movement is complete, the surgeon uses screws, bone plates, wires, and rubber bands to secure and hold the jawbone in its new position.

Orthognathic surgery only involves jaw structure inside the mouth, which results in no scars or incisions on the face. However, additional treatment requirements may result in small incisions outside the mouth. The screws used in jaw surgery are also small and become fused with the bone structure with time.

As required, the oral surgeon might transfer extra bone from the leg, rib, or hip and add it to the jaw, securing it with screws and bone plates. Over time, the jawbone reshapes itself, resulting in a comfortable and better fit.

Orthognathic Surgery: After the Procedure

After the surgery, the doctor will develop a recovery plan, including foods to be eaten and proper oral hygiene protocols. The patient is instructed to stay away from tobacco consumption and avoid strenuous exercise. Pain-relieving medications are also prescribed to aid in jawbone healing.

How Long Does it Take to Recover From Orthognathic Surgery?

Initial jaw healing from orthognathic surgery typically takes about six weeks. The orthodontist aligns teeth with braces to finish the corrective procedure. However, complete healing takes up to 12 weeks.The entire process, from jaw preparation, surgical process, bone healing, corrective braces, and retainers, takes several years to hold the jaw securely in its new procedure.

Is Orthognathic Surgery Safe?

Orthognathic surgery is a complex but safe procedure if performed by an experienced team of orthodontists and maxillofacial and oral surgeons.

A person undergoing this surgery must become aware of associated risks and complications, and it is always better to plan and discuss the treatment plan with dental professionals.

Schedule an Appointment With Your Port Angeles Oral Surgeon Today!

At Turella Oral Surgery, our team of dental professionals and Stephen J. Turella, DMD look forward to providing experienced dental services. Schedule an appointment by calling us at (360) 912-8244.
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Orthognathic surgery is a life-changing procedure. Read more about it here, or call our Port Angeles, WA office today to schedule a consultation.
Turella Oral Surgery, 902 E. 8th St., Port Angeles, WA 98362 | (360) 912-8244 | | 6/21/2024 | Key Phrases: dental implants port angeles |