Should I Correct my Bite Before a Jowl Lift?

My dentist says I need neuromuscular work done on my teeth and orthodontic work for at least 3 months to correct my bite. I suffer from absolutely no symptoms. I'm 55 and I never even knew I had such a problem.

I'm also told I have to correct it before I have a jowl lift or Lower Face lift. What should I do? And if I do go for the correction, must it be done prior to the jowl lift?

Doctor Answers 5

Dentist and a plastic surgeon can work well together

As you have heard, there are many factors that can affect the appearance of your lower face and jaw. You should be evaluated by a board certified plastic surgeon who can assess your tissue and understand your concerns. Then have this surgeon speak to your dentist. I would be hesitant in undergoing all that dental work on your bite, ESPECIALLY since you have no symptoms and your bits has never bothered you.

You may benefit  from a lower face lift or orrthognathic work on your jaw where they can recontour your jawbone- not your teeth.

Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 101 reviews

Have your Dentist and Facial Plastic Surgeon consult each other

Hello Lorjon,

Your privacy is very important but since you are contemplating procedures that may have impact on one another it is important that you have your individual Surgeons be able to talk to each other and discuss in detail what they are proposing to do for you.

In most cases a lower facelift can be done before or after orthodontic work without impacting the results or the ability of the Surgeon to execute their facelift technique of choice.

However, some orthodontic work can physically alter the underlying mandible (jaw bone) or maxilla (lower part of cheekbones) to a degree that would have an effect on your facelift surgery - therefore it is indeed best to do the oral surgery first.

The more information your two Surgeons can have allows everyone to be on the same page and avoid any confusion or potential harm and maximize the expected benefits as you undergo the individual procedures.

Take care,

Dr. Kamran Jafri

Kamran Jafri, MD
New York Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

Facelift/Lower Facelift and an Abnormal Bite

Thank you for sharing you concerns. Although your dentists assessment is most likely accurate, I would get a second opinion if you are not having any symptoms. It never hurts to have another professional opinion before committing to a series of interventions that could be taxing on your health and resources. 

Although every surgeon has their own technique(s) for a Facelift/ Lower facelift/ Neck lift, the surgical intervention is focused on movement of the soft tissue. Once the neck is adequately addressed the tissue along the jawline and cheek is resuspended along the correct vectors to fixed structures like the periosteum in front and behind your ear. If your dental interventions include moving the teeth only and there is not any plan for changing the shape of the jaw (mandible), it should not matter when you have a facelift performed.

That said, a facelift is an elective procedure that should be performed when it works for you without adding additional stress or complexity to your life. Working with other physicians/dentist/medical professionals to make your experience perfect is the rule, not the exception. Once you have a firm idea about when/if you need the dental work done, I know that it will be coordinated to best meet your needs. I hope this helps. Take care. 

Robert Brobst, MD
Dallas Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

Dentist and Plastic Surgeons working together

Without an exam it is hard to me to know what the issues might be.  Often, dentists and plastic surgeons can work together to get great results.  The dental work can influence the jowl work.  It is best to see a few dentists and plastic surgeons.  Have them talk to each other so that everyone knows what the goals are, and then formulate a plan to reach them.

Jeffrey J. Roth, MD, FACS
Las Vegas Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Orthognatic surgery and lower face lift

If you have never experienced problems based on your bite and you are already in your 50s, I think it is a personal decision as to whether to undergo oral surgery.  I would not consider it a prerequisite for the lower facelift and many patients would not want to expose themselves to painful and lengthy dental procedures to correct longstanding issues with which they have managed to live for many years.  The concern in having a jowl lift first and then these dental procedures is that the dental procedures can cause swelling which could undermine the results of the cosmetic surgery. 

Robert L. Kraft, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 40 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.