Jaw Surgery in Birmingham
For very severe problems with bite alignment, jaw surgery in combination with braces might be necessary. This combination is known as orthognathic surgery, from ortho = straight and gnathic = jaw. This treatment becomes necessary when not only are the teeth misaligned, but also the jaw.
These severe bite alignment problems are seen as severe crossbites (when the lower teeth are outside of the upper teeth), underbites, overbites and deficient chins.
A bad bite can cause problems such as inability to chew properly, speech problems and TMJ issues. Jaw surgery in conjunction with braces is also used to treat sleep apnea by moving the jaws forward to permanently expand the airways.
If jaw surgery is needed
Dr. Sema partners with excellent oral surgeons who perform the surgery. They work closely together to fully correct your bite. Generally the braces are worn for 9 to 18 months before the surgery to align the teeth. Jaw surgery is done with the braces still in place. Typically 4-6 weeks after jaw surgery, once the jaw has healed sufficiently, Dr. Sema starts to make her final adjustments with the goal of having braces off within six months.
Common jaw problems
Dr. Sema can assess your situation, and sometimes correction can be made with only braces. When braces alone can’t best correct the bite problem though, surgery may be ideal. Listed below are common findings that may warrant jaw surgery:
- Misaligned bite and problems with closing mouth correctly
- Injury and trauma
- Difficulty chewing, or biting into solid foods
- A disproportional appearance of the lower facial features
- Sleep apnea and snoring
- Extensively worn down teeth
- Jaw pain and headaches
- An underbite, overbite and other types of bite deformities
Visit Dr. Sema for a consultation to see what you can do to improve the health of your jaw and eliminate the negative effects associated with a misaligned jaw.
Jaw Surgery Case Study
Jaw surgery and orthodontics were used to correct Elijah’s overbite and jaw alignment. Dr. Sema referred for four biscupids (premolars) and wisdom teeth to be removed. She then closed the spaces and aligned the teeth in each arch. The oral surgeon then moved Elijah’s upper jaw up and his lower jaw forward. He also advanced his chin. Elijah was in braces for about 30 months.
To make an appointment, call 205‑900‑4705 or click here to request an appointment online.