Jaw Surgery (Orthognathic)


The Orthognathicfoundations of our face are the underlying bones. Our overall appearance, facial balance and shape are therefore determined by their position and proportion. Surgical movement of the upper and lower jaws can improve facial balance and harmony. The goal of jaw surgery is to align the upper and lower jaws ensuring that your teeth meet (occlude) in an ideal position, and that the bones are positioned to give you a balanced and proportionate profile.


All jaw surgery is completed in a team-approach with an orthodontist. A period of braces is required prior to and after surgery and will be discussed in detail before surgery. Dr Watts utilises advanced three-dimensional imaging and planning techniques to demonstrate different treatment options and improve understanding and involvement of patients in their treatment outcomes.


• Improve occlusion (the way the teeth meet)
• Improve facial proportions and balance
• Strengthen a weak or recessive chin
• Reduce an excessively strong or protruding chin
• Improve a gummy smile
• Increase dental show or improve your smile
• Balance a crooked smile
• Improve upper lip fullness
• Improve your airway and breathing
• Reduce symptoms of obstructive sleep apnoea
• Improve alignment of the face and teeth


Dr. Watts will typically perform your orthognathic ‘jaw’ surgery on an inpatient basis, using general anaesthesia. The length of the procedure will depend on the surgical plan for either single or two jaw surgery, or additional procedures such as genioplasty. On average the surgery will take 1.5-4 hours to complete. After surgery you will be observed closely in hospital for 2-3 days to ensure your initial recovery is progressing well before you are allowed to return home with a friend or family member.


Written procedure specific information sheets will be given to you in order for you to prepare for your surgery and the recovery period. You may experience mild to moderate discomfort after the procedure and so a postoperative analgesia regime will be tailored to meet your specific needs. The majority of the initial swelling will have subsided within the first 10-14 days, with mild residual swelling persisting for a number of months. A pureed and soft diet is an important aspect of the early postoperative recovery and will be explained in detail at the time of treatment planning. Elastic bands may be required during the recovery phase to help aid alignment of the jaws. Dr Watts will gladly discuss and disclose all possible risks, benefits and alternatives involved at the time of your consultation.


Dr Watts and his team are dedicated to providing ongoing care, support and guidance throughout your entire journey. They will be readily available to answer any further questions you may have to ensure a safe and smooth recovery. Please call our office to schedule a personal consultation with Dr Watts to discuss how orthognathic ‘jaw’ surgery may benefit you.