Teeth grinding can be treated effectively!
Dr Justin Boey reviews how Botox treatment can improve excessive teeth clenching and relieve temporo-mandibular joint (TMJ) pain while also having jaw line slimming benefits.
What is Bruxism/ Teeth Grinding?
Bruxism is a condition whereby you grind your teeth unconsciously.
Teeth grinding usually occurs during sleep.
Awake bruxism is less common.
There are some factors associated with increased risk of bruxism such as emotional stress, an aggressive or hyperactive personality, family history and psychiatric disorders or taking psychiatric medications.
How do I diagnose bruxism?
You might find that you have squarish jaw-line due to enlarged masseter muscles.
The other symptoms of bruxism or teeth grinding include headache, ear ache, increased tooth sensitivity or tired jaw muscles.
The first person who might notice your teeth grinding may be your partner!
They might awakened by your teeth grinding.
The next person might be your dentist, who will notice that your teeth are flattened, fractured, chipped or loose!
Why is bruxism bad?
Bruxism doesn’t only affect your own sleep, it definitely affect your partner’s.
What’s more worrying is possibly what it does to your dental health. Teeth grinding is like filing down the teeth continually. When this wear and tear can be evident at the age of 30 (after 20 years after you acquire your adult teeth), with symptoms like sensitive teeth, how much teeth will there be left in another 20 years?
Muscle ache, joint pains and muscle hypertrophy (increased muscle size) can occur with repeated movements. Imagine the knee pains, muscle pains that an athlete experiences with strenuous training. Basically this is your jaw working out every night! When you clench your teeth, not only your jaw muscles are affected, your temporalis muscles (under the temples) can results in a temporal dull headache. The temporal mandibular joint can be sore and can even be deformed in the most severe cases resulting in limited movement of the jaw.
Whilst it may not be the most detrimental to one’s health to have muscle hypertrophy, many people seek treatment for this reason. The masseter is the major muscle involved in bruxism. It is located right above the angle of the jaw. Hypertrophy of this muscles results in a square jawline and a broader face.
How does Botox treat Bruxism/ Teeth Grinding?
Botox treats bruxism by weakening your masster muscles (jaw clenching muscles). This will limit the intensity of the teeth grinding movement and minimize damage done to your teeth. You will also realise that your face will appear slimmer as the masseter decrease in size. You can relate this to a muscular weightlifter who stops his training for months.
Dentists may suggest wearing a splint or mouth guard to preserve the teeth without actually treating bruxism. Stress management and behavioral change may help to improve symptoms of bruxism but they don’t always work. In general, oral medications like muscle relaxants and anti-anxiety medications are also not very effective and not recommended for long term use.
How old must I be to do Botox for Bruxism/ Teeth Grinding in Singapore?
In Singapore, you can only give consent for any medical treatment after you turn 21. Anything else will require parental consent. So if you are suffering from complications of bruxism and have not responded to the other treatments, your parents might want to bring you in for a consultation.
How much Botox do I need for Bruxism in Singapore?
Different doctors have a different approach to this.
The masseter is a big facial muscle and each side should require no less than 20 (Botox) units especially in the treatment of Bruxism.
Botox usually lasts for about 4-6 months.
How frequent do I need Botox for Bruxism in Singapore?
Botox usually lasts for about 4-6 months but everyone is different. After a few injections, you will probably realise when the power of the masseters are back and be the one deciding when you should be coming back.
Price/ Cost of Botox for Bruxism in Singapore?
At Sozo Aesthetic Clinic, Botox treatment for bruxism costs from $500.
We use all 3 brands of botulinum toxin – Botox, Dysport, Xeomin.
(Terms and conditions apply.)
What are the side-effects of Botox for Teeth Grinding/ Bruxism?
Although Botox is a ‘toxin’ that can paralyze muscles, at its given concentration and dose, it is extremely safe.
If botox wrong administered or diffused to surrounding muscles of the masseter, it can change facial expressions like causing an unnatural smile, or maybe temporary losing your dimple. These changes are usually very subtle and fortunately temporary. They revert back to normal without requiring further treatment in the next 2-3 months.
There is recently a lot of anxiety about botox causing death since the recent incident. This is an isolated incident and the exact cause is still unknown. What we do know is, we have been using Botox, not only for aesthetic procedures but also for patients with neurogenic disorders. This group of patients usually requires much higher dosage treatments to treat involuntary muscle spasm in the arms and legs, which are much, much bigger muscles. There have been no such issues.
It is very safe. But, it is after all a prescription medicine and I would suggest anyone to go to a trusted aesthetic CLINIC to have an APPROVED brand of Botox, STORED appropriately to get it administered by a REGISTERED DOCTOR.
Can I overdo Botox for Bruxism?
As discussed above, it’s not the more the merrier. I feel it is important to go back to the same doctor to have your procedure done so we can work on the desired effect and make sure you don’t end up overdosing yourself unintentionally.
Why did my Botox for Teeth Grinding stop working?
In very rare cases, some people can develop Botox immunity, but this is rare in about 1-3% of patients (and it cannot happen to you if this is the first time you are injected with Botox).
If you feel that you may be one of them, please let your doctor know so that he/ she can use another brand the next time.
Is Botox for Bruxism painful?
You’ll be glad to know that Botox treatment for Bruxism is very well tolerated by most patients.
Most patients who had the treatment before will only require icing prior to the botox injections.
However, if you are anxious, we also offer potent numbing creams to further reduce any pain or discomfort.
Unsure if Botox for bruxism is suitable for you? Enquire for more information now!