Do you know about Botox and what it can do for you? You may know it’s used in cosmetic treatments to eliminate wrinkles and lines on a patient’s face. But did you know you can rely on Botox therapies to treat TMJ (Temporomandibular Joint) symptoms? Well, the TMJ Treatment Lafayette Botox therapies from Allure Dental are one of the most popular TMJ treatments in the area. Allure Dental can help you resolve headaches and migraines through TMJ therapy. However, many patients don’t know much about how the treatment works. So, if you’d like to learn more about Botox as a TMJ therapy, keep reading.
What Is TMJ Disorder?
Before you understand why Botox is used in TMJ treatments, you first need to learn about TMJ disorder. TMJ disorder is a condition caused by the inflammation and irritation of the muscles and ligaments in your temporomandibular joint. Think of this joint as the hinge that helps you open and close your mouth when talking, eating, drinking, yawning, etc. Like any other muscles, the muscles in your temporomandibular joint are sensitive to stress. So, when you’re stressed, these muscles tense up and start causing you problems.
Some of the symptoms you’ll experience when this happens to include;
- Headaches and migraines
- Bruxism (clenching and grinding teeth)
- Neck and shoulder pain
- Sore cheeks and jaws
How Does Botox Help Treat TMJ Disorders?
Botox is a drug containing a neurotoxin protein called botulinum toxin type A. This toxin works by ensuring your nerve cell signals don’t reach your muscles. Without these signals, your muscles can’t contract. So, during TMJ treatment, Botox works by disengaging some of the muscles responsible for your chronic pain. It also reduces the spasms and tension in those muscles. It’s important to note this treatment doesn’t completely stop the movement of your jaw. It works by limiting the unconscious movements of your muscles. In most cases, your doctor will prescribe Botox therapy as a complementary treatment. However, you can rely on these therapies as a stand-alone treatment. A Botox treatment might be what you need to relax the muscles and ligaments on your temporomandibular joint. Once your TMJ muscles relax, you’re going to notice other benefits. They include
- You’ll stop clenching and grinding your teeth
- The intensity and frequency of your migraines and headaches reduce
- You sleep better
- Your anxiety reduces
What Should You Expect During Your TMJ Botox Treatment?
Plenty of the patients undergoing this treatment have no experience with Botox injections. Therefore, many patients’ questions center around what they should expect during the procedure. Below is a detailed outline of what you should expect during your first treatment appointment.
- You and your doctor will first determine the number of injections you need.
- When your doctor starts the procedure, expect to receive several injections in your facial muscles. Some areas likely to be injected include the forehead, jaw muscles, and temple. The injections aren’t painful. However, expect to feel some discomfort on the level of a bug bite or a prick.
- Expect the procedure to take about 10-30 minutes. The length of your treatment depends on the number of injections you’ll receive.
What Should You Expect After Your TMJ Botox Procedure?
You’re free to resume your daily schedule immediately after leaving your doctor’s office. However, if you’re feeling some pain after the injections, use an ice pack or numbing cream to reduce the discomfort. After the treatment, ensure you don’t massage the injection sites for several hours. Do this to avoid spreading the toxin into other muscles. After a day or two, you’ll start noticing mild improvements in your conditions. However, it will take about a week for you to experience full relief.
TMJ Botox treatments aren’t a permanent fix. Therefore, expect to return every few months for further injections. The typical duration time of the treatment’s efficacy is 3 months. However, depending on your genetic makeup, the duration of the drug’s efficacy can be longer. About 3 or 4 weeks after your first treatment, your doctor may arrange for an appointment to check how you’ve responded to the treatment. Depending on your condition, you may receive booster injections.
Tips For Relieving Your TMJ Disorder After Botox Treatment
As you wait for the Botox toxin to start working, you can do a few things to relieve the pain caused by TMJ disorder.
Here are some of these tips
- Be aware of times you’re clenching your jaw and try and relax your jaw
- When you’re not eating, try and keep your teeth apart
- Avoid chewing gum, eating tough foods, and unnecessary snacking
- Maintain an upright posture. Avoid slouching or slumping
- Engage in activities that help you relax, such as yoga, massages, meditation, or breathing exercises
As you can see, Botox has many uses that many people do not know about yet. But it has become more acceptable as technology becomes more conventional. With quick results and few side effects, using botox to treat TMJ symptoms could be a solution for many.