What is jawbone reduction?

The jawbone is part of the bone on the lower face along the jaw line. Unlike a cheekbone reduction, a jawbone reduction surgery involves both the bone and the muscle.

Many patients have jawbones that are somewhat thicker and/or wider. Hence, an x-ray will show that they have a wider facial appearance. Added to this thicker and wider jawbone, they may also have a large jaw muscle. In medical terminology, the jaw muscle is referred to as the "masseter muscle" and is primarily involved in chewing. Moreover, this muscle is considered very powerful and in some patients, it can grow to be quite large, as well.

Furthermore, enlarged growth on one side of the masseter muscle can be seen in patients that tend to clamp down harder and grind their teeth often. This condition in turn will cause the patients to develop asymmetric jaw muscle development coupled with TMJ pain due the enlargement of the muscle. To treat this condition, a jawbone reduction surgery is ideal.

Surgical Location and Safety

Similar to a cheekbone reduction procedure, jawbone reduction surgery can be done as an outpatient procedure in an office setting. Performed safely in a certified environment, the surgical incisions are made inside the mouth under general anesthesia.

However, similar to any other surgery, patients can experience complications like bleeding after the surgery. Even though it is not common, safe yet excess amounts of bleeding can take place as the surgery involves the removing of the jaw muscle. However, to prevent such bleeding, surgeons clot all of the bleeders prior to completing the surgery.

Following the surgery, patients are required to wear a compression dressing to press down the bleeders and minimize swelling. In addition, patients will experience some swelling following the surgery and this can last from a few weeks to a month.

Since opening the jaw will be difficult for a month or two, patients are instructed to open and close their mouths as regular exercise for three to four days following surgery.

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