Correct jaw position with orthognathic surgery

What is orthognathic surgery and how is it performed?

Orthognathic surgery is a set of surgical techniques that allow correcting the position of the jaws, correcting their size both in width and verticality, correcting the symmetry and disharmony of the jaws and face. These techniques are performed intraorally, that is, inside the mouth, there are no external scars. We have to use techniques that allow us to cut the bone to reposition it in its dimension and in its ideal position and what we try to do is to restore the harmony of the face, harmony, symmetry and proper functioning of the jaws so that our patients can not only eat well, but also have a proportionate appearance and have a very good social and work relationship and reincorporate them to a full and complete life.

What we do is that we admit our patients under general anesthesia, we produce a situation in which we can transfer to the operating room what we have previously prepared in a computer, that is to say, we make a three-dimensional digitalized planning in order to know exactly where each of the jaws is going to be, what dimension it is going to have, what inclination it is going to have, if it is necessary to rotate it, if it is necessary to correct inclinations and other movements. This is prepared, as we have said, prior to surgery with digital three-dimensional surgery, with this we prepare surgical splints, these splints allow us in the operating room to take the jaws exactly to the place we have planned, and once we have cut the upper and lower jaw these splints will allow us to fix the jaws exactly in the planned position, it gives us more security, it shortens the surgical time and gives us a reliability and precision that we did not have before.

How do I know if I need orthognathic surgery?

Most of our patients come to the specialist in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery because they cannot close their mouth properly. It is not exclusively a problem of the position of the teeth, but rather that the upper or lower maxilla or mandible are not well positioned and are not proportionate and are not in a fit that allows chewing well, this is the case in the majority of cases. On other occasions they come to us because, in addition to this chewing problem, they do not have a facial appearance that pleases them, they do not like themselves, they are not satisfied with their appearance. Either because they have a deviation, an asymmetry or even because they have a diction problem, they do not speak well, they do not swallow well or they do not breathe well or they have sleep apneas. For all these reasons, orthognathic surgery is really indicated and allows us to solve most of these situations with satisfaction.

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What is orthognathic surgery for?

Orthognathic surgery is used to solve most of the problems we have mentioned above: chewing function problems, swallowing problems, respiratory problems due to poor air space that can be improved by widening the palate and advancing it; as well as advancing the jaw and thus correcting sleep apnea problems. But we also solve important aesthetic problems. Restore harmony to the facial face, restore symmetry is important, correct even the projection of the chin, the nose that can be improved and corrected at the same time. All this gives satisfaction to the patient and gives a better function.

What is the post-operative period?

The post-operative period is not painful although it may seem so, there are other surgeries that are much more painful. Pain is not a problem, although it is true that it is a surgery that gives a lot of inflammation, even bruising in some cases and this makes it a bit of a hassle. The first few days the patient feels the areas that remain slightly less sensitive and a certain obstruction of the nasal passages can be overwhelming, although once this is overcome, it is not a hard post-operative. The admission only lasts twenty-four hours, the day after the surgery the patients go home and this is important for their physical and psychological recovery. They are all left with their mouths open, we do not have to block the jaws, so they start eating, talking and mobilizing everything, and in this way they are rehabilitated much faster. It is true that we do not allow them to chew during the first weeks, only very soft or crushed food, but this is not a factor of discomfort in excess.