Daily functions such as eating, speaking, swallowing, and breathing are influenced by the jaw position and facial shape. The jaws and teeth need to be aligned properly to ensure they work in harmony with the jaw joints and the facial muscles. Corrective jaw surgery can help correct dental and facial malformations.
Also known as orthognathic surgery, corrective jaw surgery can also help visually improve the dimensions and shape of the face. Two-jaw surgery or double jaw surgery is an effective procedure for those who are looking for aesthetic or functional improvement to both the lower and the upper jaws.
Also known as maxillomandibular surgery, double jaw surgery can enhance an individual’s ability to breathe, talk, and chew. It can also improve the smile and the looks. Double jaw surgery can also be done to address snoring, headache, face pain, sleep apnea and other obstructive sleep problems.
Most jaw surgeries are done under general anesthesia and performed in ambulatory surgery centers or in a hospital. Special dietary guidelines and prescriptions may be provided prior to the procedure. Some laboratory tests may also be requested. Consulting an anesthesiologist may also be done before the procedure.
Indications of Double Jaw Surgery
If you have mismatched jaws and teeth, you can benefit from double jaw surgery. If the jaws and teeth are mismatched, it can result in an incorrect bite. Growth of the upper or lower jaw can also take place disproportionately resulting in a dentofacial deformity.
If not addressed, this can lead to functional issues. A misalignment might also have an emotional and psychological impact. Head or jaw injury, especially in a growing child, as well as congenital abnormalities can also affect jaw alignment.
Double jaw surgery might be recommended in the following scenarios:
- Speech problems
- Obstructive sleep apnea
- Difficulty biting or chewing food
- Breathing problems
- Chronic jaw
- Protruding jaw
- Excessive teeth wear
- Temporomandibular joint pain
- Receding chin
- Birth defects
- Open bite
- Unbalanced facial look from the side or anterior
A double jaw surgery can involve the following:
- Maxilla (upper jaw)
- Mandible (lower jaw)
- Nasal bones
- Other facial bones
Your surgeon will consult with your orthodontist and dentist to assess if double or single jaw orthognathic surgery would be ideal. Prior to the procedure, your medical history will be looked into and a full examination will be carried out. This would include pictures, bite recordings, facial measurements, teeth impressions, and X-rays.
Benefits of Double Jaw Surgery
Double jaw surgery is done to realign the jaws and the teeth and create more functional, healthy, and balanced postures. While the procedure is done primarily to improve your function and bite, it actually also offers other improvements in terms of breathing and appearance.
The procedure is also known to have a huge and positive impact on many aspects of the patient’s life including confidence and self-esteem. Below are some of the most notable benefits of double jaw surgery:
- Less treatment time. Relocating the jawbone to a more natural position can help significantly minimize the amount of orthodontic treatment needed. Double jaw surgery can accomplish more in less time.
- Improved chewing and bite correction. Jaw surgery can help bring about a dramatic transformation. This allows people to be able to chew foods more thoroughly.
- Improved speech. Proper jaw alignment can help develop a proper speaking style. In some instances, jaw surgery is paired with speech therapy to treat some speech disorders.
- Enhanced facial look. Jaw surgery helps enhance the facial appearance by restoring facial harmony and balance. It also effectively resolves issues like open bites, overbites, cross bites, and underbites.
- Improved breathing. Orthognathic surgery is also done to improve breathing and achieve facial symmetry. Sleep apnea which can be associated with other severe medical conditions can be resolved effectively with corrective jaw surgery.