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Orthognathic surgery makes bite correction and aesthetic improvement of the face

Orthognathic surgery makes bite correction and aesthetic improvement of the face

The definition of orthognathic surgery comes from the Latin "ortho", which means correct, and "gnatos", which comes from the jaws. That is, it means putting the jaws in their best relationship, to promote facial aesthetics and better occlusion (bite). It is estimated that 25 to 30% of the population presents some degree of facial disharmony and that at least half of this total needs treatment.

This is a functional surgery, and its character is not aesthetic, however, it " wins "this aesthetic focus when you place the jaws in their proper positioning, making the face of the individual often change radically for the better. It is not an isolated surgery because it is part of a treatment called orthodontic surgical treatment. This treatment can be done before and after surgery. In some cases, surgery can be performed before orthodontic treatment. This is called early benefit and happens only when the teeth already have certain gear observed in the analyzes of the models. If not, there should be orthodontic treatment before the procedure.


Orthognathic surgery is indicated for people who have a facial disharmony, which can be more than an aesthetic problem. They are usually the result of an exaggerated or inadequate growth of some of the bones that surround the face, such as the jaw, jaw, chin (or chin), nose or malar (the apple of the face).

Facial asymmetry occurs in these cases and this change usually begins during the growth phase and stabilizes in adulthood, compromising the harmony and beauty of the face. In addition to the aesthetic issue, this change causes other problems that affect the health and well-being of patients. Orthognathic surgery may prevent these future problems, such as:

  • Retention of the gum
  • Temporomandibular joint wear
  • Temporomandibular joint arthrosis.

In general, a series of maxillofacial skeletal problems may be prevented through the procedure. In addition, it is one of the treatments of choice in cases of obstructive sleep apnea when associated with facial tooth deformity, and the success rate is extremely high.


In terms of contraindication, as in any other surgery, it is check for systemic disorders that contraindicate general anesthesia. Orthognathic surgery is also contraindicated for patients who will not cooperate with postoperative measures, which include restricted feeding, for example, and for patients who have neurological disorders.

Preparation for surgery

The evaluation phase and preparation is long, about a year and a half. During this period, orthodontic treatment will seek to correct bite and masticatory function with the use of conventional orthodontic appliances, collaborating with faster results after surgery.

Exams necessary to perform surgery

Preoperative tests required are the common laboratory examinations, requests in any type of surgery and examinations requested for a common orthodontic treatment.

How is performed

Orthognathic surgery basically consists of placing the jaws in the best position possible, in such a way which guarantees the health of the temporomandibular joints, oral tissues, correct breathing, speech and chewing functions, occlusion and facial esthetics.

Before performing orthognathic surgery, a virtual planning is done, that is, it is held before on the computer so that afterwards all information is transported to the operating room. This technology gives us full precision for the procedure performed in the room. The technology used in the field is so advanced that softwares can indicate surgery specific to each case and provide approximate view of the results.

This is surgery performed in a hospital environment and the patient does not have any type of scar. The procedure is entirely performed inside the mouth, changing the shape of the maxilla, mandible and turbinates. Orthognathic surgery is considered a meticulous procedure, since the doctor modifies tenths of a millimeter inside the mouth.

Which doctor performs surgery

To perform this surgery, the ideal is for the professional to be a dentist with a specialization in surgery and buco-maxillofacial traumatology, that is, the maxillofacial surgeon is the most suitable professional.

Duration of the procedure

Orthognathic surgery lasts on average 2 to 4 hours, depending on the situation of the individual .

Care after surgery

Recovery is painless, but it is recommended that the patient stay out of work and work for at least 15 days, ideally three weeks. In the first postoperative week, the individual will feed only on liquids, and then will gradually start with the pasty foods. Since meat is released only after three months, and physical activity after six or nine months.

Possible Complications / Risks

Like any surgical procedure, orthognathic has its "common" risks, however, there are ways to mitigate those risks. One way is to choose the right professional to do this procedure, as well as evaluate your staff and the hospital, which must be in good condition. In addition, since it is not an emergency surgery, but an elective surgery, we must choose the most opportune moment for that patient, according to his sweat and schedule, ensuring the success of the surgery. In general, the postoperative risks are almost zero.

Post-surgical treatments

After surgery, the patient should continue using orthodontic appliance for a period that can vary from six to twelve months, depending on the case . The result, however, brings significant improvements both in facial aesthetics and in patients' quality of life, restoring the harmony and beauty of the face.

To optimize the results of the procedure, a low intensity laser which facilitates the recovery of lip cushioning and regresses the swelling faster.

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