Everyone’s more or less heard about Botox. Cosmetic surgeons and aestheticians alike administer it to patients seeking a safe and effective way to relax and smooth fine lines and wrinkles.
But did you know that an injection of botox can do more than just smooth a wrinkled brow? Botox, cosmetic uses aside, can also be a safe and effective treatment for certain medical conditions too.
One of these is temporomandibular or TMJ disorder. Read on and find out how an injection of botox can help alleviate its symptoms.
How Do Botox Treatments Help TMJ?
Your temporomandibular joint is basically the hinge of your mouth and enables you to chew and speak freely. However, the muscles in this joint can easily tense up when you experience any form of stress, which can result in the following symptoms:
- Soreness in the cheeks and jaw
- Facial swelling and pain
- A clicking noise in the jaw when you open and close your mouth
- Headaches or migraines
- Clenching and grinding your teeth (bruxism)
Botox is a safe and effective neurotoxin that temporarily paralyzes facial muscles, so an injection of botox can help relax the tense jaw muscles and help your TMJ unclench to relieve unpleasant symptoms.
How Long Does it Take for Botox Treatments to Kick In for TMJ?
The treatment itself only takes minutes, and some patients report a mild improvement within a day or two, but the full effects kick in after 7-10 days with Botox.
Cosmetic effects aside (such as a slimmer face due to the relaxed jaw muscles), TMJ patients usually notice the following once the Botox injections have fully taken effect:
- Reduction in frequency and severity of tension headaches
- Better sleep
- A more relaxed jaw
- Reduced anxiety (in some cases)
How Long Do the Effects of Botox Last for TMJ?
The effects of Botox usually last around 3-4 months, but it really depends on how quickly your body metabolizes the neurotoxin, so the longevity can vary from person to person.
Thus, regular injections may be needed in order to maintain results.
How Many Units of Botox Do You Need for TMJ?
Again, this can vary because the severity is different for each person. To estimate, anywhere between 20-50 units may be injected into tense muscles in the jaw muscles, temples, or forehead.
However, it’s best to consult with a qualified injector to make sure.
While botox treatments can relieve certain TMJ symptoms, do bear in mind that you may also require other complementary treatments for the others. When treating bruxism or teeth grinding, for instance, it would be best to consult with a dental care professional.
Dentistry by the Bay has both experienced and qualified dentists and a certified injector that have helped countless TMJ patients in Petoskey, MI get adequate and lasting relief from their symptoms. We also make sure to conduct a thorough consultation with each one in order to come up with a customized treatment plan that addresses the root cause of their unique concerns.
Call our office today to book a consultation.