How Botox Can Help Relieve Symptoms of TMJ

Jan 16, 2023
How Botox Can Help Relieve Symptoms of TMJ
Botox® injections are renowned for their ability to reduce wrinkles, but what can they do for jaw pain? As it turns out, quite a lot! In this blog, we explore how Botox injections can help relieve the symptoms of TMJ pain.

Your temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is a unique sliding joint that connects your jaw bone to your skull, and you probably don’t think about the complexity of this joint until it hurts. Unfortunately, there are many reasons why this joint may not function quite right. It requires your muscles and tendons to coordinate, and the slightest misalignment can affect its functionality. TMJ dysfunction can cause jaw pain, swelling, clicking noises, headaches, and difficulty chewing.

Although you can take conservative measures 一 apply a warm compress, eat soft foods, and take anti-inflammatory medication 一 sometimes, you need more help than these at-home remedies. 

Edward Delshad, DDS, helps people in Santa Monica and Arleta, California, find relief from their TMJ pain. Whether you need a mouthguard to help with bruxism (another cause of TMJ pain), Botox® injections, or surgery, our team can help you find the right solution for you.

In this blog, we focus on one treatment in particular: Botox injections. Read on to learn how Botox can help alleviate your symptoms.

Beyond the wrinkles: Learn more about Botox

Even though Botox has become a household name for its ability to smooth wrinkles and fine lines, the truth is that Botox had a history of medical uses far before it was ever used for cosmetic purposes. Originally invented to treat an eye condition, Botox continues to help address many health conditions, and that includes TMJ pain.

Botox is a neurotoxin created from a purified bacterium Clostridium botulinum. Botox works by relaxing certain muscles or nerves. In the case of dynamic wrinkles, Botox relaxes the muscles that contract to form wrinkles. In the case of TMJ, Botox relaxes tense temporalis and masseter muscles. If these muscles become tense and inflamed, they can irritate your nerves and cause pain. When Botox is injected into these muscles, the muscles relax, so they’re less likely to irritate your nerves. Less muscle swelling and reduced nerve irritation means less pain for you!

Botox lasts anywhere from 3-12 months, depending on your body’s metabolism, what area of your body you’re treating, and why you’re receiving Botox. 

Can Botox help relieve TMJ pain?

Yes! Botox can help TMJ if your pain is related to tense muscles. Stress, bruxism, and clenching your jaw can make the muscles that support your jaw overworked and tense. Botox can help relieve these TMJ symptoms:

  • Jaw tension
  • Pain 
  • Lockjaw 

Botox injections can help you manage facial pain, headaches, and discomfort while you incorporate other treatments that tackle the root cause of your tense muscles. For example, you might start focusing on bruxism treatments or practicing stress management techniques. 

TMJ dysfunction can be complex, but Dr. Delshad understands the complex relationship between your temporomandibular joint and the muscles in your neck, face, face, and head.  Our team approaches each case with care and individualized attention. Whether you need a Botox injection or a combination of Botox and other treatments, we’re here for every step of your journey. 

Is Botox right for you?

You might consider Botox for TMJ pain if:

  • Your jaw clicks or pops
  • You don’t have any contradictions (such as keloid scarring or neuromuscular disorders)
  • Jaw pain is affecting your ability to open your mouth to speak or chew
  • Jaw pain radiates to your neck or head
  • You have jaw pain and swelling

To get started with your TMJ disorder treatment options, call the Santa Monica or Arleta, California, office today to find out if Botox is right for you. Call DDS Concierge at 310-300-2884 to reach either office, or click here to request an appointment.