Day 90: The Final Post

  • Pain: 0/10
  • Inconvenience: 1/10

It’s been a slice, folks!

Today marks Day 90 of my recovery. That means my jaw is completely healed, as far as the medical world is concerned. Is my bite perfect? No. Do I still have numbness in my chin? Yes. Has my full range of motion returned? Not yet.

All that’s left now is orthodontic work. The elastics will slowly bring my molars back together and cinch my teeth up to close all the gaps. Feeling should find its way back to my face over the next few months. The mobility of my tongue and lips will return as the scar tissue breaks up.

If you’d like to see my general progress, you can take a look at my x-rays or my 3 month’s worth of mugshots. I have an appointment with my surgeon next week, so I may be posting my before and after photos sometime.

I still have a long way to climb back to the point I was at before. Baby steps are the way to go, though. For instance, I ate my first hamburger and my first chocolate bar in 3 entire months just yesterday. Every single day brings small accomplishments.

I’ve learned more than I ever thought I would from this experience, both undergoing jaw surgery and maintaining a blog about it.

  • I learned that patience is one of the primary keys to life. Without it, you’ll end up in the same place, but you’ll be a lot angrier when you get there.
  • I learned that time will heal just about anything. And while life seems to fly by at mach speeds, we still have 24 hours each day, and there’s no excuse to waste them.
  • I learned that, when you’re completely healthy and able, you take absolutely everything for granted. Next time you sit down for a meal, give yourself more than 10 minutes to enjoy it. Consider the fact that you are indulging in comforts and securities that many people in this world don’t have the opportunity to experience.
  • I learned that people are more accepting than we give them credit for. We walk down the streets judging people for what they’re wearing, how they’re holding themselves and what they’re doing. Little do we know that if we just stop to say hi to a stranger, we may find out they’re the kindest, most genuine person we’ve ever met. Stop being afraid of the unknown.
  • I learned that committing to something for 90 days takes more effort than I ever thought it would. This blog was easy to maintain for the first few weeks because I was sitting at home with nothing on my plate. However, once I returned to my job, started being social once again and began to have plans, I had to start setting time aside to update this journal.
  • I learned that, even if just a single person finds your experience useful, your time is still well worth the trouble.

Was jaw surgery worth it? Absolutely. Even though only 10 of my teeth are currently touching, my bite is still easier to use than it was before. Despite being slightly numb, I’m still able to chew much more effectively than before. I thought I looked like I had buck teeth at first, but now I’m comfortable with them and I like my smile more than before. And now, in what feels like no time at all, I’m back to normal, for the most part. I would recommend jaw surgery to anyone who is not comfortable with their bite or their side profile.

I’ve met people from all over the world through this blog–New York and Boston, Australia, England, Germany and several places in between. I can’t believe how many people out there have been through this same procedure or are on the road to have it performed. I’d like to personally thank each and every one of you for taking this trip with me. I appreciate every single comment that was made. I hope this proved to be a useful resource, and will continue to guide people along in terms of jaw surgery in the future.

I’ll most likely make 2 more posts on this blog: one in the near future to showcase my before and after photos, and another in roughly 6 months to briefly discuss the changes that take place over the next half year.

Once again, I’d like to extend a big thank you to everyone out there for keeping me motivated to complete this project. Right now, I’m off to enjoy a bike ride on this glorious summer day, which is sure to be followed by a cold beer. Cheers, my friends!


  1. Hi Katie,

    My lips haven’t peeled since mere months following surgery. At 3 months, they should be back to normal. Make sure you’re drinking enough water each day and using lip chap. Beyond that, I’m really not much of a help here.

    Also, I didn’t have any acne problems due to the operation and I haven’t heard of anyone else experiencing an outbreak either.

    I’d suggest you talk to your surgeon regarding these items. They sound frustrating and you shouldn’t have to live with them. I’m fairly certain they’re not related to surgery, though.

    Best of luck!

  2. Your blog has been so helpful. My brother went threw this surgery a few years ago but he hasn’t been any where near as helpful (since he didn’t document it) as this blog has been. I did have a question though. I’m almost 3 months out from my surgery and my lips still peel like crazy. It’s not as bad as it was in the beginning but they peel about every other day. I was wondering when this stopped for you because it’s getting irritating. Also did your face break out after the surgery? I never had a problem with acne before the surgery but now it’s like my chin has been constantly broken out.

    Thanks so much 😀

  3. Hi Dustin!

    Congratulations on making it the full 90 days, my friend! Life will get even better for you during the course of these next few months, but the recovery is now behind you for the most part.

    I hope you’re smiling lots, appreciating every bite you take in every meal, and loving life.

    Thanks for the kind words!

  4. Today is my 90th day..I have kept up with ur blog every since my day 7th..might sound a little sad but your blogs kept me sane..made me realize that im not the only one that went thru these rough months…your website its a blessing to might not think so but it truly is to some people..the patience was worth happy with my surgery and my side profile..thanks for ur was fun reading something I can agree too..god bless u.

  5. Haha, “victims” indeed. =)

    “Right as rain” may very well be a British phrase. I’ve heard my parents use it before. Maybe it’s just before my time. I like it though. It’s got a nice ring to it. I place it right up there with “fit as a fiddle.”

  6. I have to tell you I’ve raved about your blog to all my family! Reading all the comments from you and total strangers gave me so much comfort – I hope those closest to me don’t feel offended! I see my surgeon and orthodontist on Monday and I’m going to give this web address to them in the hope they pass it on to all future victims, oh sorry, I mean patients! By the way, is ‘right as rain’ a very British phrase?

  7. Glad to hear you’re trying to smile again, Nicola! I bet you can’t wait to eat to your heart’s content again.

    Also, I totally appreciate your use of the phrase “right as rain.” Awesome. =)

  8. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!! I’m just over 3 weeks post-op and SO wish I’d found this blog a month ago. I’ve laughed (well tried to) and cried reading this and it’s meant so much to me to know everything I’ve been through and, am still going through, is ‘normal’. I live in Kent, England, and had my op at King’s College in London. I had no idea what I was letting myself in for – I think I was too scared to research – and it has come as such a shock to me. As a result I thought I’d be right as rain within 3 weeks!! I’ve felt really down the last week because I’m still suffering and I miss food so much!! Reading your funny and inspirational comments has cheered me up no end – thank you! I’m not back at work yet because I teach English – that could be funny trying to drill pronunciation when I can’t even speak myself! Because of you, tomorrow is a new beginning for me! I’m going to be more positive and accept what I can’t do as part of the process! And you’re so right – every damn advert or programme on TV is related to food!

  9. I’m feeling very good, very happy with how things have ended up and have been eating normally for quite a while now and energy levels are back to normal. I’ve also lost a stone in weight and managing to keep it off! Can’t wait for the braces to come off, it’ll be interesting to see what I look like without them now.

  10. How are you feeling? Can you already eat anything you like? Do you have all of your energy back?

    Congrats on getting the braces removed soon!

  11. Today is my day 90! Made it! And the braces are coming off on 8th June, happy days 🙂

  12. Ooh, Scotland! I’ve heard you have some beautiful countryside there!

    That’s impressive that you’re eating semi-solid foods at only 4 days post op. You’re a jaw surgery pro already!

    Best of luck over these next few weeks.

  13. Ha ha, I’ll add another location to your list of where people are from, I’m in Dundee in bonnie Scotland! Today marks four days post op. Big achievement of the day, I have eaten three sausages! True, they were chopped up into tiny pieces but I really don’t care. They tasted so nice just sitting on my tongue! I’ve also done away with drinking from a cup for now and am using a bottle with a sports cap, as I think it’ll be easier to keep track of how much I’m drinking.

    The bruising has started up now, it’s not too bad at the moment though. I do have a random patch of bruising under my left eye but it’s mostly on my cheeks. I’m sure this will spread. I’ve also managed to open my mouth a bit further. I got curious and shone a torch into my mouth to check out my stitches in a mirror! Interesting sight. I also think a bit more of my face is slowly waking up, most notably my chin and palate. Once these come back surely eating will be easier! Have an appointment with my orthodontist on Wednesday to get elastics in, so hopefully that’ll go well.

  14. Isn’t that the most relieving feeling ever?! Just wait until your splint is removed–it’s incredible! (And a bit slimy at first.)

  15. Guess What guys??? I got my wires cute today! But now….I just have that annoying splint….. another two more weeks! I did get mashed potatoes and really soft meatloaf made with oatmeal and wheat bread…sounds boring…but at this point it felt like I was eating at a 5 star restaurant. How is everyone doing?

  16. Hi Josh,

    I’ve never heard of the surgery being done without braces, at least in recent years. It may be possible though, I’m not sure. I wonder how they’d band/wire you shut if they had no metal hooks attached to your teeth.

    If you’re planning on getting braces anyway, I’d say get them beforehand so your teeth are in the right place for surgery. That way, you’ll already be used to the braces when surgery rolls around, rather than having it all done at once.

    You should ask your surgeon how they band your mouth shut after surgery without the hooks on your braces though. I’d be interested to hear how they do it.

  17. Hi Graham,

    Your blog has been a wonderful tool to me in my decision to undergo double jaw surgery. TQ

    I do have one question though.

    Have you heard of cases where surgery is done before the braces treatment, even in severe cases?

    I live in Malaysia and have been researching extensively across the city for a surgeon I am comfortable with. From what I hear and from what I read, I need to have braces on for 12 to 14 months before the surgery.

    There is this one surgeon tho who informed me that this is now ‘uneccesary’ and that it is now possible to do it immediately and do the braces later. I am somehow not very convinced with this as I can find no evidence of such cases anywhere!

  18. Haha, twice?! You’re sure dedicated! I look forward to coming back and reading this story start to finish in a year or so to see what it actually sounded like the whole way through.

    Remember that this is just my own recovery. Every surgeon has different methods and ideas, so if he disagrees with some of what I said, he probably knows what he’s talking about. 😀

    Good luck on the 9th. That’s coming up really fast!

  19. Hi Graham,


    I’ve read this blog twice now. The second time I took notes. Actual notes, with a pen and paper. I’m taking these notes to my surgeon on Monday. He’s really gonna hate me haha.

    My double jaw surgery is in roughly 2 weeks now – on the 9th of August. Majorly excited you have no idea (actually, you would have a very clear idea ha).

    Anyway, I just wanted to add my voice to the chorus of appreciation here. Clearly I think your blog is tops. Thank you for writing it.

    Neela 🙂

  20. You are absolutely right Graham. You are a very thoughtful and wise young man. I should not worry about these things till the 6 month mark. Also I’ve forgotten how fortunate I was that I do not have the debilitating underbite any more and that my recovery was relatively smooth and painless. So many things could have gone wrong with a surgery this complex yet I survived intact with a normal bite that functions well. That alone should be a cause for celebration, the rest are ultimately trifles. Thanks again for your encouraging words and wise advices. I’ll leave a reply again about a month later. I’m pretty sure I won’t look like Homer Simpson or Bruce Willis 🙂 I was probably exaggerating.

Leave a Reply

“Over the past several years, I’ve done my best to respond to every comment on this blog, but unfortunately I no longer have the time to do so. If you have questions about jaw surgery and want to connect with others on this journey, please join the Facebook group. Don't worry — it's free!”