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Surf City Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery

Procedures to Repair Bones in the Jaw Area

Posted on 4/15/2024 by Weo Admin
A man in dental chair ready for oral surgerySustaining bone loss or breaks in the jaw regions may necessitate operative care. Oral and maxillofacial surgeons can repair various jaw damages using grafting or fixation techniques.

Grafting Missing Bone

Lacking bone structure can result from injury, infection, cysts, or tumor removal. This causes instability, chewing struggles, and impacts on facial structure. Grafting implants new bone to reinforce the area.

The bone used in grafts is removed from the patient themselves, minimizing rejection risk. Common sites for harvesting bone grafts include the hip, rib, and cranial bones. After shaping the bone section to fit, surgeons attach it using tiny screws or plates. This supports regrowth.

Over three to nine months, the implanted bone fuses to the existing structure as blood vessels and cells infiltrate. Dental implants may later be placed if teeth need replacing.

Fixing Fractures

When the jawbone breaks, prompt realignment must occur before complete healing. Otherwise, improper fusion can cause long-term problems such as misalignment of the bite or limited jaw movement.

Closed reduction resets a break via wiring or tiny plates attached to the outer jaw surface with incisions inside the mouth. Open reduction involves external incisions to access and stabilize fractures directly. Since the jaws facilitate breathing and swallowing, quick fracture repair is vital.

Swelling and Bruising Management

Expect moderate facial swelling and bruising post-operation as the areas mend. Cold compresses, head elevation while resting, and medications assist with managing inflammation and discomfort during the initial healing stage. Avoid disturbing wired areas with your tongue or foods.

Importance of Aftercare

Rigorous aftercare and follow-ups ensure appropriate bone and bite alignment as the areas heal. Wires and bands may require occasional tightening or replacement. Your surgeon also monitors healing progress and sensation return, ordering bone grafts if regeneration lags. Even after bones mend fully, ongoing exams help catch any longer-term issues.

Reconstructive jaw procedures enable optimal facial form and function restoration after damage occurs. Though the process involves some short-term pain and swelling, patients appreciate the dramatic improvements in appearance, bite, and speech once healing is completed. Committing to aftercare empowers the best possible outcome.

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