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Orthognathic surgery or jaw surgery Book an Appointment

Orthognathic surgery or jaw surgery

Orthognathic surgery, often referred to as jaw surgery, is a specialized surgical procedure used to correct significant misalignments or irregularities in the jaws and facial structure.


Orthognathic surgery is primarily performed to address issues related to:

  1. Malocclusion: This refers to misalignments of the teeth and jaws, which can lead to problems with biting, chewing, speech, and facial aesthetics.
  2. Facial Imbalances: It corrects structural discrepancies in the upper and lower jaws, chin, and facial bones, which can result in an unbalanced facial appearance.
  3. Obstructive Sleep Apnea: In some cases, orthognathic surgery is used to treat obstructive sleep apnea by repositioning the jaw and soft tissues to improve airflow during sleep.


The orthognathic surgery process typically involves several stages:

  1. Consultation: Patients first consult with an orthodontist and/or oral and maxillofacial surgeon to determine if they are suitable candidates for the surgery. Comprehensive examinations, including dental and facial imaging, are conducted to assess the specific issues.
  2. Orthodontic Preparation: Before surgery, patients may undergo orthodontic treatment to align their teeth properly. This step ensures that the bite is in the correct position after the surgery.
  3. Surgery Day: During the surgery, the oral and maxillofacial surgeon makes precise incisions in the jaws and repositions them to their correct alignment. Surgical plates, screws, or other fixation devices are used to hold the bones in place.
  4. Recovery: After surgery, patients go through a recovery period, which includes pain management and a soft diet. It can take several weeks to months for the bones to heal fully.
  5. Orthodontic Follow-Up: Orthodontic treatment continues post-surgery to fine-tune the bite and ensure the teeth fit together correctly.


Orthognathic surgery offers several benefits, including:

  1. Improved Aesthetics: It enhances facial harmony and symmetry, leading to a more pleasing appearance.
  2. Better Bite Function: Correcting misalignments improves biting and chewing function, reducing the risk of jaw pain and TMJ disorders.
  3. Enhanced Speech: Speech difficulties related to jaw misalignment are often resolved through surgery.
  4. Health Benefits: In cases of sleep apnea, surgery can improve breathing and reduce the risk of related health problems.


Candidates for orthognathic surgery typically have severe jaw misalignments or facial imbalances that cannot be corrected with orthodontics alone. The decision to undergo surgery is made through careful evaluation by orthodontists and oral and maxillofacial surgeons.

It's essential to consult with a qualified consultant specialist orthodontist and an oral and maxillofacial surgeon to determine if orthognathic surgery is appropriate for your specific condition. This surgery can have life-changing benefits for those with significant jaw and facial structure issues, improving self-esteem, function and aesthetics.

Types of Orthognathic Surgery

Maxillary Osteotomy (Le Fort I):

This surgery involves repositioning the upper jaw (maxilla). It's commonly used to correct issues such as an overbite (when the upper jaw protrudes forward excessively) or open bite (when the upper and lower teeth don't meet when the mouth is closed).

Mandibular Osteotomy (Bilateral Sagittal Split Osteotomy - BSSO):

In this procedure, the lower jaw (mandible) is repositioned. It's often performed to correct underbites (where the lower jaw protrudes forward more than the upper jaw) or severe overbites.

Genioplasty (Chin Surgery):

Sometimes performed in conjunction with jaw surgery, genioplasty involves reshaping the chin to achieve better facial balance and harmony.

Combination Surgery

Many patients require a combination of maxillary and mandibular osteotomies to achieve the desired facial and dental alignment.

The Surgical Process:

Recovery and Post-Operative Care:

  1. Hospital Stay: Depending on the complexity of the surgery and individual patient factors, 1-2 nights hospital stay will be required.
  2. Swelling and Discomfort: Swelling and discomfort are common post-surgery. Cold packs, pain medications, and a liquid or soft diet are usually recommended.
  3. Orthodontic Adjustments: Orthodontic treatment continues after surgery to fine-tune the bite. This may involve adjustments to braces or other orthodontic appliances.
  4. Healing Time: It can take several weeks to months for the bones to fully heal. During this time, patients gradually transition from a soft diet to a regular one.
  5. Follow-up Appointments: Regular follow-up appointments with the surgical and orthodontic teams are essential to monitor progress and ensure proper healing.
  6. Long-Term Results: Orthognathic surgery typically provides permanent results, correcting facial and dental alignment issues.

It's important to note that orthognathic surgery is a highly specialized procedure, and the specific details can vary based on individual patient needs and the surgical plan created by the orthodontic and surgical teams. Patients should have a thorough consultation with their healthcare providers to understand the procedure fully and what to expect during their unique surgical journey.

You can call Kingston Orthodontics on 0203 002 2501 to book an appointment for an initial consultation with our orthodontist to know if you need orthognathic surgery.


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