Are There Any Alternatives to Maxillary Impaction Surgery For Open Bite? (photo)

finished with braces but open bite remains. Orthodontist says jaw surgery is needed to close bite. Fifteen yr old doesn't want surgery. Are there alternatives?

Doctor Answers 1

There are alternatives, but surgery is the best.

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There are alternatives, but each has pros and cons.  Here they are:

  1. Braces and maxillary impaction surgery - see my video linked below.  Look at the forth video called Maxillary Impaction (Skeletal Open Bite).
  2. Braces and TAD's - probably the only viable option with a decent chance of success and acceptable result.  It involves the orthodontist placing small metal bone anchors in your upper jaw to help pull the upper back teeth upwards.
  3. Braces and transpalatal bar - this encourages the molars to move upwards, allowing the bite to close down.  Most successful in growing patients.  Limited success with older patients.  Hint - 15 year old girl is probably done growing.
  4. Braces and hi-pull headgear - ditto the last one. 
  5. Braces and elastics - causes extrusion of your front teeth and is prone to relapse.  I would run away from this one.
  6. Braces with extractions - Trust just aren't the right kind of case for it.

What is nice about your case, is that you HAVE a nice smile line.  We don't want the upper front teeth to move either up or down.  So as the video shows, the back of the maxilla goes up, but the front pretty much stays put.  Obviously, it also involves going back into braces.  That's a bummer I know.  The other thing to consider is your age.  At 15 most surgeons will not do jaw surgery unless they know you are done growing.  So all that being said, and your stated non-desire to do surgery, option 2 is the only option I would attempt.

Atlanta Orthodontist

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