Braces, Surgery or Both? (photo)

I'm 44 and just fed up with "goofy" teeth. I have enclosed some pics. Orthodontist suggests braces and surgery (says I have a smaller lower jaw). Can't start treatment just yet as I may be moving abroad next year. Any advice? Will my teeth/jaw benefit from treatment or am I just being vain?

Doctor Answers 3

Surgery or braces?

Always hard to tell from photos but you certainly don't look like you have a problem that HAS to have surgery.  Nobody has a perfect bone structure and we often just do a little compromising and compensation to get a good result (although a "perfect" result might be surgicial

Saint Louis Orthodontist

Braces can work very well

The term "surgery" can mean so many different things, so "maybe" when it comes to that.  A simple gum contouring surgery might be all you need at the end of braces.


There is nothing wrong with a little vanity, but you likely will notice improved function as well after braces.  Seek advice from 2 or 3 orthodontists to see what they suggest.

Lance Timmerman, DMD, MAGD
Seattle Dentist
4.3 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Reshaping of Teeth and Invisalign might work

I would agree with Dr. Waxler.  It's difficult to make any statements based on just a couple photos, but it doesn't look like you NEED surgery or even braces.  It looks like your back teeth fit together pretty well (based on your left side photo).  And if assuming your right side is just like your left, then it looks like your problem is limited to teeth and not bones.  Surgery is correction of the bones.  Teeth can be corrected with braces or Invisalign and a little tooth reshaping.  IMO, I would correct your overbite with Invisalign and reshape some front teeth to make them less "goofy".   Good luck. 

Robert Passamano, DDS
Irvine Orthodontist

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.