The medical term, bruxism, describes the unconscious action of teeth grinding or clenching. In most cases, individuals are not aware of their bruxism until it begins to cause physical pain and dental problems.
Occasional teeth grinding isn’t normally a cause for concern, but it becomes an issue if it occurs chronically.
Those who suffer from bruxism experience headaches, sore jaws, tooth sensitivity, earaches, migraines, facial pain, and wear and tear on both their teeth and jaw muscles.
While current treatments for bruxism, such as wearing a mouthguard at night or night routines to reduce stress, focus on preventing ongoing dental damage, new studies show that Botox could stop teeth grinding altogether.
What Is Botox & How Is It An Effective Treatment for Bruxism?
The anti-wrinkle cosmetic treatment option, Botox, which is derived from Botulinum Toxin Type A, is used to fight the early signs of aging. When injected into facial muscles around the eyes, mouth, forehead, and nose, it can help temporarily reduce the appearance of frown lines, crow’s feet, and deep laugh lines.
However, it is also proving to be an effective treatment for those who suffer from teeth grinding.
According to a double-blind, placebo-controlled study published in the Journal of Neurology in 2018, confirmed that botulinum injections into the masseter and temporalis muscles improve the painful symptoms associated with unconscious sleep bruxism .
Those who were given Botox injections during the study noted that they had much improved symptoms and researchers found that they had cosmetic changes to their smiles.
How Is a Botox Procedure Performed for Someone With Bruxism?
When the individual comes in for treatment, a small dose of Botox is injected directly into the masseter muscle. This muscle is what controls the movement of your jaw.
The Botox will weaken the muscle enough to stop it from clenching and moving the jaw involuntarily. This is significant as the relaxation that comes as a result of the Botox injection, reduces the wear and tear on the teeth, as well as, reducing headaches, facial pain, migraines, and earaches.
While the Botox does significantly relax the masseter muscle, you are still able to chew and display facial expressions as normal.
Why Receive Botox Instead of Conventional Treatment Options?
One of the major issues with teeth grinding and the clenching of the jaw is the painful symptoms that appear afterward. An individual that suffers from sleep bruxism, will often complain of sore jaw muscles in the morning.
Unfortunately, conventional treatment options like using mouthguards at night or taking anti-inflammatory medications in the morning after, are not enough to reduce the painful after-effects.
Using Botox for teeth grinding is also a great alternative for those who want to avoid invasive surgical techniques.
Whether you go ahead with Botox for your teeth grinding or choose a conventional treatment option, it is important to use enamel strengthening toothpaste to help reduce the wear and tear on your teeth and lead a lifestyle that promotes a healthy diet and regular sleep.
If you’d like to learn more about using botox for teeth grinding, check the condition of your teeth, or maybe even make some cosmetic enhancements, feel free to get in touch today.