When the jaws do not fit together properly, it is called a malocclusion (literally “bad bite”). A malocclusion, such as a protruding lower jaw or underbite, can be corrected through jaw surgery, which is often performed in combination with simultaneous orthodontic treatment.
Malocclusions typically develop due to different growth rates between the upper and lower jaws, and when they are addressed early, orthodontic intervention alone may suffice to correct the problem. This type of intervention tends to be most effective in children and adolescents, whose jaws are not yet fully developed. However, when jaw growth is complete or when the malocclusion is particularly severe or complex, jaw surgery is typically warranted. Our oral surgeon may use any number of strategies to correct a patient’s bite, depending on the specific issue. For example, in cases of protruding lower jaw, it’s common to remove excess bone material in the mandible in order to reposition that bone.
Orthodontic Treatment & Jaw Surgery to Correct Protruding Jaw
When orthodontic treatment is concurrent with jaw surgery, an orthodontist and the surgeon will collaborate on the timing of each procedure. Typically, the patient will get the braces first and the orthodontist will begin to move the teeth. The patient will then undergo the surgery, and follow up with the orthodontist after a sufficient amount of time has passed to get the teeth into their final desired places. This type of surgery tends to be more complex than many other oral surgery procedures, and it is typically performed in a hospital or a specialty surgical suite. Post-operative instructions may also differ depending on the nature of the surgery, so check with your surgeon to see what you need to do to promote healthy healing after the procedure.
A protruding lower jaw detracts from your smile, and it can also affect your ability to chew and speak properly. A surgical procedure can help to address this issue, so you may want to consult with our oral surgeon to see if this intervention could be beneficial in your case.
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