Chin Reduction Surgery

Chin reduction surgery is a procedure to decrease the length, width or overall size of your chin. It can help your chin appear more balanced with the rest of your facial features.


What is chin reduction surgery?

Chin reduction surgery is a procedure to reduce the size of your chin. You may have this procedure if you feel your chin is very long, wide or projects too far past your nose. The surgery can help improve the balance between your chin and your other facial features. Chin reduction surgery is also called chin shaving surgery or mentoplasty.


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Who gets chin reduction surgery?

You may get chin reduction surgery if you have:

  • Congenital (present at birth) deformities of your chin bone or jaw.
  • Macrogenia (large chin).
  • Prognathism (protruding jaw).
  • “Witch’s Chin.”

Who is a candidate for chin reduction surgery?

The ideal candidate for chin reduction surgery is someone who:

  • Doesn’t smoke.
  • Has realistic expectations about the results of surgery.
  • Is old enough to have reached full skeletal maturity, so their bones have stopped growing (early adulthood).
  • Is physically healthy.
  • Has good teeth alignment.

Can chin reduction surgery be combined with other procedures?

Depending on your goals, a healthcare provider may recommend combining chin reduction surgery with other procedures, including:

What’s the difference between chin reduction surgery and chin augmentation?

Chin reduction surgery reduces the size of your chin, while chin augmentation enhances the size of your chin, making it more prominent or defined. A chin implant is the most common way to reshape your chin during augmentation, but sometimes, your own jawbone is used to achieve the augmentation.


Procedure Details

What happens before chin reduction surgery?

Your healthcare provider will give you detailed instructions on preparing for chin reduction surgery. They may:

  • Ask you to stop taking certain medications such as anti-inflammatory drugs or aspirin.
  • Do blood tests to make sure you’re healthy enough for surgery.
  • Order X-rays or other imaging scans of your chin and jaw to plan your surgery.
  • Recommend a plan to quit smoking.
  • Take photos of your chin to compare the results after surgery.

What happens during chin reduction surgery?

You receive general anesthesia for chin reduction surgery. This type of anesthesia puts you to sleep, so you don’t feel any pain during the procedure. Chin reduction surgery can take anywhere from one to three hours. Your surgeon:

  • Makes an incision (cut) inside of your mouth, under your chin or both.
  • Uses surgical tools to shave or cut away part of your chin bone.
  • Shapes your chin so it’s symmetrical with your other facial features.
  • Stitches the incision closed.

What happens after chin reduction surgery?

Chin reduction surgery is usually an outpatient procedure, so you go home the same day as your surgery. Your healthcare provider will give you specific instructions about oral care and/or cleaning and taking care of your incision.

Risks / Benefits

What are the benefits of chin reduction surgery?

Chin reduction surgery can give your facial features a more balanced, symmetrical look. It may also help improve discomfort from an overbite or other dental malocclusions (misaligned teeth) when combined with orthognathic (jaw) surgery.

What are the risks of chin reduction surgery?

Potential risks of chin reduction surgery include:

  • Allergic reaction to anesthesia.
  • Bleeding.
  • Blood clots.
  • Infection.
  • Numbness around your chin or jaw.
  • Scarring.

Recovery and Outlook

What is recovery like after chin reduction surgery?

The recovery process is different for each person. Your recovery will depend on several factors, including your age, overall health and whether your chin reduction was combined with other procedures.

About two to three days after your procedure:

  • You may be asked to eat a soft food or liquid diet.
  • Rest and avoid physical activity.
  • Wear dressings (bandages) over your incision.
  • Your chin and lower face may feel sore or tender.

About seven to 14 days after your procedure, you may:

  • Have some swelling or slight bruising in your lower face.
  • Notice that the skin on your chin feels stretched or tight.
  • Resume regular physical activity (only with your healthcare provider’s approval).
  • Transition back to a diet of solid foods (only with your healthcare provider’s approval).

When to Call the Doctor

When should I call the doctor?

You should call your healthcare provider if you experience:

  • Fever or other flu-like symptoms.
  • Numbness in your face.
  • Severe pain in your chin, jaw, face or head.
  • Shortness of breath.
  • Signs of infection in the incision site, such as pus or foul-smelling drainage.

A note from Cleveland Clinic

Chin reduction surgery reduces your chin’s length, width or overall size. The procedure can give a more balanced look to your facial features. It’s usually a cosmetic procedure, but some people get it for medical reasons such as jaw or teeth problems. It’s a relatively safe outpatient procedure, but it does come with some risks. Talk to your healthcare provider to find out if chin reduction surgery is right for you.

Medically Reviewed

Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 10/01/2022.

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