September 27, 2022
BOTOX is a well-known solution for facial wrinkles and fine lines, but did you know that it can have other uses as well? Some dentists are actually able to use BOTOX to help patients with TMJ disorders find relief from their chronic discomfort. How does this work, and is it the best option for dealing with your own jaw pain? Read on to learn how BOTOX can play a role in TMJ therapy.
What is a TMJ Disorder?
TMJ is an acronym for temporomandibular joint, which is what keeps the lower jaw connected to the upper jaw. Normally, your TMJ lets your jaw comfortably make the motions needed for chewing or speaking. However, if the TMJ becomes strained or damaged, it can cause a lot of pain, and the movement of your jaw might be limited. This issue is referred to as a TMJ disorder.
How Can BOTOX Treat a TMJ Disorder?
The type of treatment your dentist recommends for a TMJ disorder will largely depend on what they believe the underlying cause is. BOTOX might be suggested if the problem appears to be a jaw joint that has been overworked due to repetitive grinding and clenching of the teeth; these actions put a lot of pressure on the TMJ, leading to painful tension.
With BOTOX, your dentist can inject a very small amount of botulinum toxin into the muscles around the TMJ. The toxin will temporarily stop the nerves from sending the signals that cause the muscles to contract. Without these movements, your TMJ will have a chance to relax, relieving much of the tension that was causing your pain.
What Can You Expect After Getting BOTOX to Treat TMJ?
You should notice a decrease in your TMJ-related pain within a couple of days, and the difference will only become more obvious over time. There may be some mild temporary bruising around the injection site(s), but this will typically be mild and will fade on its own. You’ll be able to return to your regular activities right away, although you’ll need to avoid rubbing or massaging the injection area for several hours.
The effects of BOTOX for treating TMJ should last for about 3 to 4 months. You can have follow-up injections done so that you can continue to enjoy the benefits. That said, if you want a more permanent solution to your TMJ disorder, you should talk to your dentist about other treatment options like occlusal splints or equilibration.
If a TMJ disorder is making it difficult to live your best life, BOTOX may be a good choice. Schedule a consultation with your dentist today to see if this treatment is right for you or if you should consider another solution for your chronic jaw pain.
About the Practice
At Souris Valley Dental Group, five talented, caring dentists combine their talents so that they can bring Minot families high-quality, comprehensive dental care that they can count on. If you’re suffering from a TMJ disorder, they can offer a full range of treatments to help you find relief. To schedule a TMJ consultation and learn more about your options, visit our website or call (701) 852-5595.
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