BOTOX and Filler Treatments

Bruxism and TMJ Syndrome

If you wake up regularly with headaches or pain and discomfort in your jaw, neck, or shoulders, you may have temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder or bruxism. TMJ disorders are characterized by jaw problems, including clicking or popping in the jaw and difficulty opening and closing your mouth.

Bruxism, on the other hand, is when you clench or grind your teeth. This can happen during the day or while you’re asleep. Daytime bruxism is sometimes the result of stress, while nighttime bruxism can be associated with snoring or sleep apnea. Missing or poorly aligned teeth (including bad bites) can also make bruxism more likely.

Prescription drugs (particularly antidepressants) can increase the likelihood of grinding, as can tobacco or alcohol use. Bruxism can also run in families, and it can be associated with disorders like GERD, ADHD, and Parkinson’s disease.

Symptoms and Complications of Bruxism and TMJ

Millions of people have either a TMJ disorder or bruxism, and some people have both. If you have one of these problems, you are not alone. However, that does not mean you shouldn’t seek treatment. TMJ disorders can cause patients unnecessary pain when left untreated, and untreated bruxism can lead to tooth damage and sensitivity.

In many cases, a person with bruxism might not even be aware of how often they grind their teeth. This is especially true of people with sleep bruxism. Catching the grinding in the act isn’t the only way to know it’s happening, though.

There are several clear indicators of bruxism:

  • Shortened, worn down teeth with flattened chewing surfaces
  • Damage like chips and cracks in the teeth
  • Exposed dentin (the yellow bony tissue layer beneath the enamel) tooth loss
  • Jaw soreness (in sleep bruxism, the jaw feels worse in the morning, while daytime bruxism leaves the jaw sore by evening)
  • Frequent headaches
  • Overdeveloped jaw muscles

Symptoms of TMJ disorders include:

  • Pain or tenderness of your jaw
  • Pain in one or both of the temporomandibular joints
  • Aching pain in and around your ear
  • Difficulty chewing or pain while chewing
  • Aching facial pain Locking of the joint, making it difficult to open or close your mouth

Treating TMJ and Bruxism with BOTOX and Fillers

Many dentists treat TMJ disorders (also called TMD) and bruxism with night guards or splints, which are very helpful, but at Greencastle Hometown Dental, we can also treat TMJ problems and bruxism with BOTOX, which is just a shorter way of saying “botulinum toxin.” The BOTOX or filler is injected into painful problem areas to provide relaxation and relief. BOTOX treatments are quick and easy, making them a convenient treatment for TMD and bruxism pain. Of course, your specific treatment depends on your situation and your needs. For best results, your dentist may recommend both a night guard and BOTOX or filler treatments.

What Is BOTOX?

Are you familiar with the origin of penicillin, the first antibiotic discovered? It was originally derived from mold, and the story of BOTOX is a similar tale of using science to turn something harmful into something incredibly beneficial. As we mentioned above, BOTOX is another word for botulinum toxin, a neurotoxic protein produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum — the same bacterium that causes botulism. Thanks to modern science, we are able to take that compound and use it for a number of medical purposes, including treating TMJ disorders and bruxism.

How Does BOTOX Provide Pain Relief?

BOTOX and filler injections relieve pain caused by TMJ disorders and bruxism by relaxing the muscles in your face, which prevents jaw tension, clenching, and teeth grinding. This muscle relaxation helps to relieve pain in your jaw, neck, and shoulders, in addition to reducing the occurrence of migraines and headaches. It can also help protect your teeth from damage due to pressure or grinding.

BOTOX for Aesthetic Purposes

While BOTOX treatments are proving effective in treating some dental problems, you are probably more familiar with the use of BOTOX and fillers for aesthetic reasons, usually to eliminate wrinkles and fine lines. That is another popular use for the injections. Many people successfully use BOTOX injections to create a younger look and increase their confidence in their appearance.

Come See Dr. Knuth With Your Bruxism or TMJ Symptoms

If you’re interested in BOTOX or filler treatment, please contact us to schedule an evaluation. We will thoroughly examine your situation so we can target the reason for your jaw pain or teeth grinding and begin treatment. You can learn more about us at our business site or get directions to our practice by clicking this link.

We look forward to welcoming you to our dental practice.