Corrective jaw surgery (also known as orthognathic surgery) sometimes becomes necessary when braces and orthodontic treatment alone are not enough to correct a person’s bite. Misaligned jaws can be caused by genetic factors, facial injuries, or other environmental influences.
Jaw problems can cause a variety of issues, from difficulty eating and speaking to headaches and jaw pain. Getting treatment for your jaw misalignment can drastically improve the appearance and function of your jaw.
Problems Associated with Misaligned Jaws
Treating jaw alignment problems can prevent other issues later on in life. Jaw misalignment is associated with the following issues:
- Difficulty chewing and eating food
- Teeth that don’t come together properly
- Breathing and speech problems
- Snoring and sleep apnea
- Shorter tooth lifespan
- Difficulty fully closing the mouth/lips
- Increased risk of gum disease
- Tenseness/soreness or TMJ problems
- Protruding jaw
- Open bite
If you suffer from any of the above symptoms, and you think you may be suffering from jaw problems, contact our office today. Our surgeons are experts in a variety of different jaw treatments, and they will be able to help you find the best possible treatment.
Orthognathic Surgery Procedure
If you suffer from jaw misalignment, orthognathic surgery, or corrective jaw surgery, may be right for you. During this treatment, our surgical team will work hand in hand with your orthodontist to perfect your bite and improve your smile. First, advanced 3D imaging technology will be used to take scans of your jaw. This allows our surgeons to have the most accurate possible view before forming your treatment plan. Your orthodontist will prepare your teeth for their new alignment with braces before the surgery. During the procedure, your oral surgeon will separate the jaw, then reposition the bones into their new, proper alignment. After the surgery, your orthodontist will adjust your braces to make any final, minor adjustments to perfect your bite.
Surgical Treatment of Sleep Apnea
Sleep apnea is a serious condition where the airway becomes blocked during sleep, leading to lower blood oxygen levels, restless sleep, daytime fatigue, difficulty concentrating, cardiac problems, and other complications. Sleep apnea can often be controlled by the prescription of a CPAP machine or weight loss, but in some cases, surgery is the best option for treatment.
In cases where the jaw is not properly aligned, the opening between the tongue and throat can become more constricted during sleep, leading to sleep apnea and snoring problems. Jaw surgery can open the airway and allow air to pass through without issue.
Before any surgery is recommended to treat sleep apnea, one of our surgeons will perform a detailed examination of your entire face and throat region. A sleep study may also be ordered to determine the severity of your condition. If you think you may be suffering from sleep apnea, or you have been recommended for an evaluation by one of our surgeons, contact our office in Kennewick, WA, for a consultation.