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Jaw Surgery and Dental Implants in Singapore Blog

Can Invisalign be used with Corrective Jaw Surgery in Singapore?

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One of the common bugbears of orthognathic patients is the need to have braces for two years or more. Many of them are young adults with an active social life and having metal tracks in the mouth is not exactly a positive fashion statement. Invisalign, a system of transparent orthodontic aligners generated by computer-aided design, is a revolutionary approach to aligning teeth. It has gain tremendous popularity due to the “invisible” nature of these appliances, eliminating the metal tracks altogether. Can Invisalign be used in orthognathic surgery cases?

 

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Will I Need Braces and Corrective Jaw Surgery?

bigstock-Asian-Beauty-With-Dental-Brace-39628048Corrective jaw surgery – or orthognathic surgery – is done to correct problems with oral function and/or appearance issues caused by jaws that are poorly aligned. Poor jaw alignment can be caused by jaws that are mismatched in size due to uneven jaw growth, or jaws that are shaped or positioned abnormally, causing malocclusions – conditions in which the teeth cannot meet properly. Among the most frequent questions asked by patients who are considering jaw surgery is whether it will be necessary to have both braces and surgery. In most cases, the answer is yes, since both are typically needed to correct the issues caused by poor jaw alignment.

Orthognathic surgery is a treatment process in which a Singapore oral and maxillofacial surgeon and orthodontic specialist work in cooperation to correct malocclusions. The reason that orthodontic care is part of the process is that when jaws are not aligned properly, the body will do its best to compensate for that defect by moving the teeth into positions that work somewhat better – as far as biting and chewing – in the misaligned jaw.

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Can I Have Corrective Jaw Surgery Without Orthodontic Treatment?

bigstock-Asian-Beauty-with-smiling-face-16219253Corrective jaw surgery – also called orthognathic surgery – is done to correct jaws that are misaligned or have grown unevenly, causing problems with oral  function and/or appearance. It is generally a collaborative process, involving a Singapore oral and maxillofacial surgeon, an orthodontist and other dental professionals, and typically includes orthodontic treatment both before and after surgery. Among the most frequent questions patients ask as they begin to learn about the treatment process is this: Can I have corrective jaw surgery without orthodontic treatment? The short answer is, generally not, and here we'll explain why orthodontic care is typically essential to the process.

Why Orthodontic Care Is Important To Your Corrective Jaw Surgery Results

Corrective jaw surgery is a treatment that is done in adult patients. While the need for surgical correction of poor jaw alignment or uneven jaw growth may be evident earlier, best long-term results are achieved if surgery is delayed until jaw growth and development is complete. In the meantime, teeth tend to move into less than optimal positions as the body tries to compensate for the malocclusion  – or incorrect bite. For example, in patients with a significant overbite, the upper teeth may tip inwards and the lower teeth tip outwards, while in patients with a substantial underbite, the lower teeth tend to tip inwards, and the upper ones outward.

In either of these common situations, correcting the positioning of the jaw without addressing the abnormal tooth alignment that poor jaw alignment has caused generally results in upper and lower teeth failing to fit together properly. This leaves the patient with unresolved functional and aesthetic issues, as well as the same risk of long-term complications that was present before surgery – which can include jaw pain, headaches and abnormal tooth wear that can eventually lead to serious dental problems.

Orthodontic treatment before surgery reverses the damage that poor jaw alignment has done in terms of tooth positioning. To prepare your mouth for optimal oral function, comfort and appearance after surgery, your orthodontist will move your teeth back into proper position, ensuring that they will fit together correctly after your Singapore oral and maxillofacial surgeon has resized, reshaped or repositioned your jaws as necessary to correct poor positioning and/or alignment.

While months of orthodontic treatment before corrective jaw surgery may seem like a hassle, in the end, it is well worth the time and trouble. Forgoing that care means leaving the job half done – which means that you won't get optimal results in correcting the difficulties that your poorly aligned jaws have caused, whether those are functional issues, like poor biting and chewing efficiency or impaired speech, aesthetic ones that affect your self-esteem and self confidence, or some combination of both. The bottom line is this: When it comes to corrective jaw surgery, it just makes sense to do everything possible to make sure it's done right the first time.

cosmetic jaw surgery singapore

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Braces vs. Jaw Surgery for Underbite in Singapore


underbite

 Underbite is a condition in which the teeth do not align properly, with the bottom teeth overlapping the top ones when the mouth is closed. This condition can be caused by irregularities in the positioning of the teeth, which is called a dental underbite, or by jaws that are misaligned, called a skeletal underbite. Braces and jaw surgery are both commonly used to treat underbite in Singapore. Which of the two is best in each case depends largely on the underlying cause of a patient's underbite.

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Why Braces Aren't Always Enough to Fix an Underbite

Underbite in SingaporeAn underbite – technically called a class III malocclusion – is when a person's lower jaw protrudes. This results in a prominent chin and lower teeth that are positioned in front of upper teeth when the mouth is closed. Often, dental underbite – related to tooth positioning – can be fixed via non-surgical orthodontic intervention (braces). However, severe cases of underbite can be caused by asymmetrical jaw growth – a condition called skeletal underbite. Often, orthodontic care alone cannot resolve this type of underbite, but it can be corrected with the help of a Singapore oral and maxillofacial surgeon skilled in cosmetic and reconstructive jaw surgery. 

Skeletal Underbite

This condition can be caused by an overdeveloped lower jaw, an underdeveloped upper jaw or a combination of both, causing mismatched and poorly aligned jaws. Functional affects of this condition can include poor biting and chewing efficiency, speech impediments, jaw pain and abnormal tooth wear, which can lead to tooth sensitivity, decay, loosening or damage over time, as well as gum disease and infection. A severe skeletal underbite can distort facial features significantly, an issue that often causes low self-esteem and confidence, limiting social and professional success.

When the tendency towards this problem is detected in early childhood, orthodontic specialists can often use various techniques to guide jaw development, eliminating or minimizing the problem through non-surgical intervention. However, when early intervention fails or does not occur, resulting in a substantial discrepancy in size between the upper and lower jaws, orthodontic work alone often cannot provide adequate bite correction, and patients will be referred to a Singapore oral surgeon.

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