Do I Need Corrective Jaw Surgery?

Corrective Jaw Surgery at Greater Louisville Oral & Maxillofacial

Unless you’ve had trouble chewing, talking or laughing, you may not have noticed any issues at all with your jaw. Like many aspects of your health, you may not consider getting your jaw checked until something is clearly wrong. However, you may be struggling with a misaligned jaw that could require corrective jaw surgery without even knowing it.

What Happens During Corrective Jaw Surgery?

Orthognathic jaw surgery, or corrective jaw surgery, is a procedure that re-aligns the jaw to correct minor or major skeletal abnormalities that may result from circumstances ranging from birth defects to sports injuries. Once your surgeon determines you require corrective jaw surgery to improve your quality of life, they will detail the exact procedure you will undergo, which may vary depending on your current jaw alignment. Usually, patients are required to wear braces for six to 18 months before receiving surgery to align the teeth properly.

Often, corrective jaw surgery involves removing small portions of the lower or upper jaw bone to appropriately set and cement the jaw in place. Your unique bite problem or other developmental bone issues will dictate which corrective jaw surgery option is best for you.

Following corrective jaw surgery, your surgical team will assess your condition to estimate your recovery time and develop a follow-up plan for you.

Why Might I Need Surgery?

Corrective jaw surgery can be a potential treatment for many disorders, misalignments and conditions. As with many surgeries, your orthodontist will exhaust all other non-invasive treatment options before recommending corrective jaw surgery.  Some potential treatments for misaligned jaws may include:

  • Braces
  • Aligners
  • CPAP device
  • And more

If, however, these treatment plans prove ineffective, surgery may be suggested to correct the jawbone’s development and alignment, such as:

  • Open bite
  • Overbite
  • Underbite
  • Injuries
  • Birth defects
  • Temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD)
  • Sleep Apnea
  • Unbalanced appearance
  • And more

Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Services in Louisville, KY

Your jaw plays a major role in the functionality and appearance of your mouth. If you notice you struggle to complete everyday activities such as chewing, shouting or smiling, it may be time to talk to your orthodontist about jaw realignment treatments, including jaw corrective surgery. At Greater Louisville Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Associates, patients will receive personalized, dedicated care from all members of the office staff. From the moment you enter our office, we’ll provide you will the kindness and compassion you deserve and the professionalism you expect of a licensed, knowledgeable oral surgeon. Contact us online or call 502-459-8012 to schedule your consultation today!

 

 

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Cleaning and Maintaining Dental Implants

Toothbrush and Floss for Dental Implant Care

When patients are informed they may be in need of dental implants, they may think their implants will act exactly like regular teeth. While they give the appearance of your natural teeth and function in much the same way, dental implants aren’t exact replicas and may require minor changes to your oral health routine to keep them strong for as long as possible.

How Are Dental Implants Different?

Many believe teeth are bones in their own right. While they aren’t actually bones, they are a part of your complex skeletal system and are made up of mineralized natural substances such as calcium phosphate and connective tissue, commonly found in the body’s bones.

For better or worse, dental implants cannot exactly mimic the chemical makeup of your natural teeth. Instead, dental implants are usually made of titanium or zirconium for maximum durability. While these materials mesh wonderfully with the surrounding bone of your jaw, they may require a slightly different oral routine to prevent infection or scratching of the implant crown.

Cleaning Routine

Your cleaning routine for dental implants will have all the same steps as the routine you use with your natural teeth, though you may need to change how you brush, floss and use mouthwash. Because your implants are made differently, they are more susceptible to scratches when cleaned with an abrasive toothbrush or toothpaste. Invest in a soft bristled toothbrush and begin using non-abrasive toothpaste to prevent scratching the surface of your crown. Even though the crown isn’t made of the same material as neighboring teeth it can still collect bacteria in scratches and other imperfections, causing bad breath and potentially leading to infections of other tooth roots or gums.

The successful integration of your implants relies as much on gum health as it does on gentle cleaning of the implant itself. Gently floss your teeth and implants regularly to prevent your gums from developing periodontal disease, which may cause gum recession, bone loss and dislodgement of the implant.

Checkups

Your implants may not be able to develop cavities like your natural teeth, but they still need an expert’s touch every now and then to determine how well they’ve integrated into your jaw, and to provide thorough cleaning for both teeth and implants. Your hygienist will select implant-friendly dental cleaning tools to ensure your implants are free of plaque, debris and bacteria. Many of these gentler cleaning tools utilize vibration to break apart deposits, depending upon how stubborn or large they are. Excessively abrasive scrubbing of especially tough deposits can still cause damage to the implant.

For this reason, attentive at-home oral hygiene is a must to maintain beautifully smooth implants for longer.

Enjoy a Healthy Smile with Greater Louisville Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Associates

Your smile is one of the first things people notice about you. Make a great first impression by properly cleaning and maintaining your natural teeth and dental implants via your at-home oral hygiene routine and regular dental checkups.

If you’re a Louisville resident hoping to transform your smile for the better, the dental professionals at Greater Louisville Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Associates can assist you in creating the winning smile you’ve always wanted. Contact us online or call 502-459-8012 to schedule your consultation today!