Your temporomandibular joints, commonly abbreviated as TMJ, are two very important joints in your mouth. These joints, which are located on each side of your face where the lower jaw and the skull meet, are responsible for the movements of your mouth. They consist of a ball and socket, with a disc in the center. The disc functions to absorb the pressures that are placed on the jaw. If the joints become irritated, you can be faced with a significant amount of pain that can interfere greatly with your quality of life. At OHIOSmiles, we can help to stop the pain, restoring normal function to your mouth, with Botox.
Do You Suffer From TMD?
TMD, or temporomandibular joint disorder, is a term that encompasses some different conditions that affect the health and comfort of your jaw and your temporomandibular joints, including the attached ligaments, muscles, and bones. Common issues that affect your TMJ, leading to TMD include bruxism, facial trauma, and alignment issues with your teeth or jaws. These issue cause irritation in your TMJ, which leads to inflammation, causing severe pain and significantly impacting your ability to move your mouth even slightly.
While pain in the TMJ and jaw are common symptoms of TMD, there are other symptoms that may occur as well. These symptoms include:
- Facial swelling and pain.
- Trouble eating, speaking, or even just moving your mouth.
- Lockjaw. When this occurs, you are temporarily unable to move your mouth.
- Headaches and earaches. While these symptoms may not seem related, the pain in your TMJ can radiate up into your skull and into your ears.
Treating TMD With Botox
When you think of Botox, you most likely think of a cosmetic treatment designed to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. While this is true, Botox can also be used to treat TMD as well. It is an FDA cleared treatment that is a purified form of botulinum. Originally it was approved in 1989 to treat muscle spasms. In 2002, it was cleared for cosmetic use. Today, in addition to cosmetic uses, it is used to treat bruxism and bruxism related TMD issues.
How Botox Works
Bruxism is a condition in which you grind and clench your teeth. The excessive forces placed on your teeth, jaws, and TMJ can eventually lead to severe pain, while also causing the attached muscles to tire out. Botox is an injectable treatment. We strategically inject the liquid treatment into your skin, targeting the muscles responsible for grinding and clenching. Botox works to relax these muscles, which can lead to a great alleviation of pain and other related symptoms.
The process for getting Botox injections is fairly straightforward and non-invasive. It is also fairly quick, generally taking 20 minutes or less to complete. After your treatment is complete, you can return to your day as normal, although it is recommended to hold off on strenuous activities for at least 24 hours. Full effects of Botox generally take effect within a few days, and your results can last upwards of 3 months. Additional treatments may be recommended to maintain the results.
Benefits Of Botox For TMD
Botox provides several incredible benefits, including:
- Treatment is non-invasive.
- No downtime.
- Tension in the jaw is alleviated with no impact to the functions of your mouth.
- Pain, headaches, and earaches can be alleviated.
- Injections help to reduce the risk of later complications associated with bruxism and TMD, including gum recession, tooth damage, and loose teeth.
If TMD is affecting your life, Botox may be able to help. For more information, and to find out if Botox is right for you, call OHIOSmiles at (740) 439-2501 to schedule your consultation today.