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Oral Surgery/Brace activation


Dear Doctor Joel Teig

I wrote to you in december 2013 telling about a problem in my Sarpe surgery.
At that time, I forgot to mention two things.
The first is a symptom I start to experience after this surgery. As the operation was with bilateral cut, I started to feel a certain numbness in my right side, over the upper teeth.
I´m feeling difficult to move the mouth and articulate the words.
The surgery was 20 months ago. Do you think it may disappear after some time and I can have the same sensitivity as before?

The other question is about the activation of the retainer. I´m in orthodontics now, and as the Sarpe was not entirely successful, and to my first question, you answered that there is real risks to perform a second surgery, to cut bones that have already been cut, I then, abandoned this idea and started the orthodontics.
The projection I was given in the beginning, was an average 18 month treatment with the retainer, so,  theoretically I should wear it for another six months. The orthodontist hasn´t even started the intercuspation yet.
I feel things are going in a very slow pace, as my orthodontist claims he only can make one activation on the retainer per month, since he has to wait for the bone to grow in and support the tooth in its new position.
He says this “bone remodeling” takes between 21 to 40 days (I hope I have used the right terms here to explain the problem).
The matter is, I had friends and nephews who were in orthodontics and used to have two activations per
month on their braces. I also hear about many cases of people who have been in orthodontics for years without a visible result, and had their treatment finished only months after they decided to change orthodontist.
I would appreciate very much to have your opinion on the subject. I trust you.
Sincerily thankful.


Savio - I really am at a loss.  I'm not sure what you should do.  The fact that the orthodontist is not doing much might mean that you should find a new one.  As far as the surgery, there is a possibility, now that time has passed that it can be redone.

My suggestion is that you get second opinions from both an oral and maxillofacial surgeon and orthodontist.  I wish I could be more accurate, but without examining you or viewing pictures and xrays it is a little difficult to determine which type of doctor might now be best to help you.  I am not happy that the orthodontist you have has done so little.

Again, I wish I could be more exacting and tell you which way to go.

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Joel S. Teig, DMD, Diplomate ABOMS, retired


I am a board certified oral and maxillofacial surgeon available to answer questions related to tooth extractions, implant insertion, facial recontruction, facial and oral tumor removal, TMJ dysfunction and various successful treatments, including surgery if all else fails, and occlusal discrepancy requiring orthognathic or jaw surgery.


Board Certified Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon practicing for over 20 years. Assistant Clincal Professor at State University School of Dentistry.

American Dental Association, American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons

BA- University of Connecticut DMD-University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine Oral and Maxillofacial Surgical Residency - Roosevelt Hospital, NYC

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