MCO Orthodontics

Stouffville Orthodontist Office

28 Sandiford Drive, Unit 1
Stouffville, Ontario L4A 3V9

905-642-5618

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Oshawa Orthodontist Office

292 King Street West, 2nd Floor
Oshawa, Ontario L1J 2J9

905-579-0122

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Markham Orthodontist Office

4581 Highway 7 East, Suite 103D
Markham, Ontario L3R 1M6

905-477-7750

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Downtown Toronto Orthodontist Office

101 McCaul Street
Toronto, Ontario M5T 2W7

416-855-6585

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Orthognathic Surgery

What is surgical orthodontics?

Just as orthodontics repositions teeth, surgical orthodontics (also known as orthognathic surgery) corrects jaw irregularities to improve the patient's ability to chew, speak, and breathe and for improved facial appearances. In other words, surgical orthodontics straightens your jaw. Moving the jaws also moves the teeth, so braces are always performed in conjunction with jaw correction. This helps make sure teeth are in their proper positions after surgery.

Who needs surgical orthodontics?

Whenever possible, Dr. Tam will avoid surgery for his patients, but will consider it for non-growing adult patients with improper bites and those with facial aesthetic concerns. Jaw growth is usually completed by age 16 for girls and 18 for boys. All growth must be completed before jaw surgery can be performed. However the pre-surgical tooth movements can begin one to two years prior to these ages.

How does it work?

During your orthodontic treatment, which usually lasts 6-18 months, you wear braces and will visit us for scheduled adjustments to your braces. As your teeth move with the braces, you may think that your bite is getting worse rather than better. However, when your jaws are placed into proper alignment during orthognathic surgery, the teeth will then fit into their proper positions. Surgery is performed in the hospital with an oral surgeon, and can take several hours, depending on the amount and type of surgery needed. In lower jaw surgery, the jawbone behind the teeth is separated and the tooth-bearing portion is moved forward or backward, as needed. In upper jaw surgery, the jaw can be repositioned forward or backward, or the jaw can be raised or lowered. Certain movements may require the jaws to be separated, with bone added/removed to achieve the proper alignment and stability. Other facial bones that contribute to alignment may also be repositioned or augmented. When you have completed surgery, you should be able to return to school or work within two weeks. After the necessary healing time (about 4-8 weeks), your orthodontist "fine-tunes" your bite. In most cases, braces are removed within 6 to 12 months following surgery. After your braces are removed, you will wear a retainer to maintain your beautiful new smile.

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