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Jaw surgery for a perfect smile. Is it worth it?

Discussion in 'Health and wellbeing' started by Jen1983, Mar 4, 2011.

  1. I went to the orthodontist yesterday for a consulation. My front teeth are big and stick out at a funny angle, with a relaxed face my lips don't touch. I also have a very 'gummy' smile. I was prepared for her to talk through train tracks, extractions etc but she dropped a bit of a bombshell.
    Apparently, my face is out of proportion due to 'excessive verticle growth' of my upper jaw. That's why my lips don't naturally meet and why so much gum is on show.
    Anyways, Dr said that she could straighten my teeth, push front ones in, but I would still have a gummy smile. If I want a 'normal' smile then the only opition is jaw surgery. Initially I thought 'no way', but then I looked at before and after pictures and was impressed.
    She said she could refer me to hospital and surgery could be done on the NHS as it is an abnormality. It would be done for confidence/ self-esteem reasons.
    I just don't know what to do. I'd love a smile I'd be proud of, but I can't help thinking surgery is a drastic step. I would hate to be thought of as vain or doing it purely for cosmetic reasons. Those women who have boob-jobs and lipo on these TV shows just do my head in. Would I be judged the same as them? The whole treatment is long and involves a hospital stay and 2-4 weeks off work. Plus I'd have to wear train tracks before and after surgery, meaning lots of appointments and time off work.
    Any experience? Advice?
    Thanks in advance.

     
  2. Yes, you would be having the operation out of pure vanity. The "abnormality" clause is the justification for getting it for nothing. So what?
    Cosmetic surgery would be one thing I'd see slashed completely from the NHS menu if I were in charge. But I'm not, and it's available, and probably not for long.
    Go for it if you believe the difference to your life will be worthwhile.
     
  3. Would be nice not to have the pi$$ taken out of me. Goofy, gummy bear, bugs bunny.... these names don't stop when you become an adult.
     
  4. Then what's your problem? Fear of being thought vain?
     
  5. Chica77

    Chica77 New commenter

    Personally I wouldn't put it in the same cateogry as a boob job or lipo. I think your face is what people notice first about you (you generally, not just you Jen!) and it must knock your self-esteem if people are calling you names based on it. You can't just change your face, or hide it or whatever. If you don't like your boobs you can get a good bra, if you want to lose weight you can diet/exercise, so cosmetic surgery for changing your size is different to me than for changing something about your face. And it's not like you just want a cuter nose, or bigger lips, you want your jaw in proportion.
    I don't know what i'd do in your position. The only thing i'd like to change about my face is my lips - i wish they were fuller - but i'd never actually do anything about it!
    Good luck with making your decision.
     
  6. Eva_Smith

    Eva_Smith Established commenter

    I personally think you should do what is best for you. Those who judge are not worth the time and effort it takes to think about.
    If you think it will make you happy and confident, then I'd say go for it. It's not up to anyone else. In any case, no-one else has to know that the reasons for the surgery are purely cosmetic.
    I'm sure you will have any and all risks explained to you and will be appropriate advised by a doctor, who would not wish to put you through an operation (esp on the NHS) if they didn't feel the results could be worth it. If you weight up the risks with the possible results and are prepared to take them, then good luck and go for it!
    Eva x x x
     
  7. Doitforfree

    Doitforfree Senior commenter

    My son had a big gap between his upper and lower teeth due to (I see now) an inherited trait in our family. His was particulalrly severe and the dentist said it might need surgery. But instead he had 'twin blocks' which force the lower jaw forward and corect the problem without surgery. One of my nephews has had the same treatment. There was no guarentee it would work but was better than going straight for surgery. He had the treatment in his teens, as it's supposed to work best when a person is growing. But it would have to be worth askign about. You might find that if you went for your hospital appointment they would offer you more opwtions than just surgery. We were lucky that the orthodontist thought my son's case was very extreme and referred us to the excellent department at our local hospital where he had fantastic treatment.
     
  8. Once baby is born, I'll be having braces for two years and then jaw surgery to bring my lower jaw in line with my upper jaw. Not sure if it will improve my smile - but it will mean that I can eat things that most people take for granted such as apples, corn on the cob and sandwiches which have hard things in like bacon or lettuce or cucumber.
     
  9. Are you bothered about wearing train tracks at school?
     
  10. I work in a college - and no I'm not bothered at all, why would I be? I just want my teeth and jaw to be normal.
     
  11. I had train tracks as a teenager and remember how they effected my speech.
     
  12. I had many years of braces when I was a teenager, very many years of pain too. Unfortunately as I've got older, my upper teeth have gone back to how they were when I was a teenager. My lower jaw wasn't effectively dealt with - instead the orthodontist tried to pull back my upper jaw.
    I can deal with a couple of years of my speech possibly being affected just so that I can eat properly and smile properly. What I'm not looking forward to is the liquid diet following the op for 6 weeks - but I figure it might help me lose some weight!
     
  13. Can you liquidise cakes?! Surely there's only so much soup you can eat!

    Have you been on the waiting list long? Or will you wait until baby has arrived before being on the list?
     
  14. I spose I can have melted ice cream!! The dentist referred me to the orthodontist about April/May 2009 - I got an appointment in June, and was supposed to have an x-ray which I wouldn't let them do in case I was pregnant. And they told me I'd have to wait until after I'd had a baby to have any work done. This is my second pregnancy since then as I lost the last one. So as soon as this little one's born, I shall be asking the dentist to re-refer me!
    Is your surgery imminent, or are you on a waiting list?
     
  15. Nothing that definite yet! The orthodontist will refer me if I want, I just need to make the phone call..... I suppose I could see the consultant and go from there. I would love to see a photo of what I would look like post-surgery to see if it is all worth it.
     
  16. That would be fabulous wouldn't it? I keep thinking I'll look like a completely different woman! With a different profile, and with a liquid diet - surely I'll lose lots of weight!!!
     
  17. I would go for it! I missed the chance to have good teeth and haven't smiled for over 20 years because of my **** teeth. Don't do what I did and suffer in silence. Be brave and have the treatment. I am sure you will not regret it. Good luck with your decision. Would love to see your new wonderful smile.
     
  18. Yes, it's my profile that I hate the most!
     

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