Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"Will jaw correction give me a better smile?"
I have a very bad underbite and want to look normal. Will jaw correction help?
Orthognathic surgery can definitely help to reposition the mandible when there are problems with occlusion (what most people refer to as "overbite" or "underbite"). I would definitely recommend a consultation with an OMFS (Oral Maxillo Facial Surgeon). It is hard for me to tell you exactly what different surgical options you will have without being able to examine you well. In general you can think of occlusion abnormalities (bite abnormalities) being the result of the maxilla (upper jaw) or the mandible (lower jaw). Thus surgical correction is focused on the repositioning of one or both of these structures. There are situations where occlusion can be corrected with splints or other non-surgical techniques. Most surgical techniques involve breaking (or cutting) the bone in specific locations, and then advancing it and fixing it into position with plates and screws. At your consultation at the OMFS office they will likely obtain a panorex X-ray of your jaw (it is like a panoramic x-ray) to help with surgical planning and as part of the work-up. Sometimes a CT scan is used instead at the discretion of the surgeon. I hope that this answers some of your questions. There are many options out there to correct your jaw, and I recommend a consultation with an OMFS to determine which are the best for you. Best of luck.
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