T-Minus 1 Day

I go in for double jaw surgery tomorrow morning. I’m set to arrive at the hospital at 7:30 am. Surgery begins at 10:30 am. Why it takes 3 hours to put an IV in, I’ll never know. Anyways, I’m walking over. I figure I should enjoy my last morning of breathing easy for awhile.

I have 2 weeks booked off from work and I’ve arranged to stay at my parent’s place for the first week or so of my recovery. I have no idea what that recovery will entail, but it sounds like a fairly invasive procedure, so I imagine there won’t be much eating or moving of any kind involved.

So far, my biggest fear is the IV. I absolutely loathe needles. That sounds weird, I know, coming from a guy with several tattoos, but it’s the honest truth. I have friends who say they love watching the needle pierce through their flesh whenever they’re donating blood, but I think they’re crazy.

The surgeon has told me to expect a full recovery in 90 days. I’ll be documenting that, each and every day, right here, along with pictures.


  1. Nice to meet you, Addison! You’re going to love the feeling of your teeth touching when all is said and done, not to mention how fabulous your smile will be!

    Good luck, and feel free to share your stories during recovery!

  2. Hey there Graham, i’ve actually found your website extremely helpful. You see, i have the same exact problem as you had. A class 3 underbite. The only teeth in my mouth that touch, are 4 of my molars. Otherwise, there is about a half inch gap between my top and bottom jaw when clenching my mouth closed.
    Moving on… i actually have surgery approaching me in a couple of months. I just wanted to say thank you, because now i’m not nearly as terrified as i was before! And i have no reason to back out now from surgery. Thanks again 🙂

  3. You’re not the first person to tell me to publish this as a fun short story. However, I’m not sure it’s an enjoyable read to anyone who hasn’t interacted with thoughts of jaw surgery at some point, and that’s a pretty niche crowd.

    Besides, it already is published… right here on this website! =)

  4. Angie from South Africa

    July 21, 2011 at 8:59 am

    Thanks G 🙂 Yeah South Africa is awesome in that way. The calibre of Doctors out this way, is very high!

    Oh and by the way, i have read your entire journal, it’s amazing. If i were you i would publish it, becasue there is a lot of humour to it too! You have me in stitches sometimes! Call it ‘The diary of…..” (think of a name) I promise you, it would sell!

  5. Angie, those nerves will definitely keep you on your toes, haha!

    I didn’t have to donate blood beforehand, but I’m sure some people have. I think it all depends on how your physical goes a few weeks prior to surgery. They didn’t foresee complications with me, so they didn’t require any blood.

    South Africa is home to some of the best surgeons on the planet, so you’ll be in good hands. Seven years ago, I had my foot reconstructed by a surgeon from your area. I wasn’t sure if I’d even be able to run and play sports again, but he took good care of me.

    I’m excited for you!

  6. Angie from South Africa

    July 21, 2011 at 7:19 am

    I too am having double jaw surgery, the upper jaw being the biggie. Also, thinking of Nora ^^^^^ today’s the 21st and she’s having / had her surgery already. Right now i am tentative for the 6th August and my nerves are slightly shot. Bit of excitement mixed with nerves. Anyways, i love your blog and will keep on reading :-). I can see you are going to get me through it 🙂 I do have one question though. Did you have to donate blood before hand? Just typing to you is making this a reality..sigh… woot woot!! 🙂 (nerves again)

  7. “Operation Break My Face.” I like it. It sounds completely ridiculous, but it’s also completely honest!

    The surgery is definitely a frightening thing to think about, but you just need to weigh out the pros and the cons. You’ll look slightly different, but you’ll adjust quickly and love your new bite and smile. I haven’t talked to anybody yet who said they were left worse off. A few people required touch up operations afterwards, but those are rare cases.

    You’re going to do great–you sound well-prepared. If you need to rant during those first few days, you’ve got a listening ear!

  8. Graham,
    On July 21st I will be having double jaw surgery. I will have my upper and lower jaws brought forward and have a sliding genioplasty. After having jaw pain that has deteriorated to arthritis and wearing away of bone since 6th grade I’m finally on the way to being pain free. I want to say thank you from the bottom of my heart. When I was still trying to convince my mother that I needed help I showed her this blog. I had read it from start to finish when I began to seriously consider the surgical route. It has been informative and helpful, and really served as the little push I needed to finally make the decision.
    I’m nervous about all of the little details. What if I miss my old face? What if they move something into the wrong place? What if things are made worse or I have a new problem? I suppose all of these things are normal. I’m less than one week away now.
    I guess what I’m trying to say is thank you. I’m scared but your blog has made me feel less alone. See you on the other side of surgery land!


  9. Make sure to eat something you enjoy tonight, Luke. And good luck with the operation!

  10. thanks for posting all the info graham. i get the same double as you tomorrow and this blog helps out alot.

  11. No worries! You’re going to do great! Remember to think positive. As frustrating as that sounds, I think it’s your best offense.

  12. Hey graham thanks so much for this I am going into the same surgery on fri july 8 (wich is in 3 days) I am getting a little nerous thius blog is helping me alot thanx 🙂

  13. That was my biggest fear too: the IV. Once I’m asleep, I have no fear (go figure).

    You’ll be fine. Just look away from the needle and think about awesome childhood memories. Or how cool it will be to have a working jaw afterwards!

    Keep me updated during your recovery. I’ll be sure to read your posts!

  14. Ahhh i’m so scared of the IV, oddly enough having my jaw broken doesn’t scare me, but the IV makes me want to throw up. I’m really hoping I don’t faint during any of the blood work or the IV because i have a bad habit of doing that too.

  15. Well, you can see my daily mugshots (http://doublejawsurgery.com/day-88-the-official-mugshot-roundup) and see what I looked like after 2 weeks. I was still pretty swollen and had difficulty speaking. I’d give yourself 3 weeks before attempting school again.

  16. heyyy i’m getting this too!

    my bottom moved backwards and upper moved forward.

    my ortho says I will be ready by spring break (which is 2 weeks) but I was wondering if the swelling would be too bad to go back to school (im in hs). so I would get the surgery, recover for 2 weeks, then go back to school.

    basically I was wondering if I should do this over the summer instead?

  17. Vaneesha, you’re almost 1/3 of the way to living a normal life again! You will love when you can eat a real meal again. I guarantee it.

  18. Dear Graham,
    its been 27 days exactly since my surgery. Your posts are very helpful and very encouraging. Thumbs up for sharing them. Its really an experience the aftermath of the operation. Wish you all the best. Am counting the days I can eat a real meal because am fed up with all those liquids and my face is still a little swollen. I cant feel my cheeks, my lips and chin yet.

  19. Hi Melissa!

    Everything I have to say is pretty much documented here in these posts. My biggest piece of advice is to get outside every single day if you’re able and to await that 2-week mark when life will start becoming a lot easier.

    Also, make sure to eat and drink as much as possible. Just don’t give up. 🙂

  20. I Stephanie, I quicklie browsed through your blog as today I had my last appointment with my orthodontist before my jaw surgery, Im so scared I was crying during the entire appointment and even now 9 hours after, but she suggest me to read some blog to reassure me, And this is how I came across yours. I aint going to lie it kind of reassure me….My surgeon and orthodontist said it would take about 1 month for the swelling to go away, and it kind a look like it didint took long for you, can you tell me more, Im getting both my lower and upper jaw broke. If you want you can email me, that would be much appreciate, if you cant well thank you for the time you took to read this.


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