Botox for TMJ: Can it help?

The temporomandibular joint acts like a sliding hinge that connects your jawbone to your skull. Medical issues in this area are known as TMJ disorders and caused by several factors such as: arthritis, genetics and jaw injury. TMJ disorders usually cause pain and headaches. Symptoms include:

  • TMJ pain (jaw muscles) 
  • Sore facial muscles including in the cheeks 
  • Aches and pains around the ears, neck and shoulders 
  • Jaw pain when chewing
  • Clenching or grinding your teeth 

If you consistently suffer from any of these symptoms, we advise you to consult your doctor before considering Botox for TMJ. Please bear in mind that Botox can disrupt the diagnosis process. Therefore, we suggest you wait for a proper diagnosis before you receive TMJ treatment.  

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Can Botox help TMJ? 

Botox is an effective treatment that relieves pain from the symptoms described above. It’s a safe and quick procedure that gives therapeutic relief for several months. Benefits include: 

  • Relief from discomfort and pain 
  • Permanent solution for minor symptoms 
  • May be a cheaper alternative to other treatments (such as surgery) 

How does Botox work for TMJ? 

Botox treatments typically work in the same way in all areas of the face. An injection site is selected based on your symptoms and reasons for Botox treatments. Botox injections for TMJ may be given in several areas associated with the jaw; like the temporomandibular joint, temporal muscles and masseter muscles, for example.  

A neurotoxin that uses botulinum toxin Type A (a temporary muscle paralysis) is used to relax the muscle. Nerve endings are inactivated so that muscles cannot contract. This prevents involuntary contractions in the jaw. The relaxation of the muscle and elimination of jaw contractions provides relief from painful symptoms. 

You may feel some minor pain like a small bug bite during the procedure. This is completely normal. For the most part, Botox injections are painless. 

Does Botox help TMJ permanently?  

All Botox treatments require regular follow ups but Botox should help to relieve your symptoms. Keeping them topped up can help over the long term. How long Botox lasts for depends on whether you received Botox for therapeutic or cosmetic reasons and where you got the injections. Botox for TMJ lasts for around three to four months. 

How many units of Botox for TMJ? 

TMJ Botox treatment typically needs around 50-60 units. Your aesthetic injector will decide how much you need during your pre-procedure examination in which you will discuss your symptoms.

How much is Botox for TMJ? 

TMJ requires more units of Botox compared to other types of treatments e.g. aesthetic injectors inject 10 – 30 units in the forehead. Therefore, the more units required to work effectively, the more your treatment is going to cost. Typically, TMJ Botox treatment costs anywhere between $500 – $1500. 

Right now, we’re offering a very special offer on facial Botox for new patients. Not a new patient? Don’t worry! We’ve got more specials on offer that might just suit your fancy. 

Does insurance cover Botox treatment for TMJ?

Since TMJ is considered a medical issue, one that Botox provides therapeutic relief for, insurance companies may agree to cover expenses. Especially if you suffer chronically from the symptoms listed above. 

The best thing to do in this scenario is to contact your insurance company to find out for sure. 

Are there any side effects of TMJ treatment?

You may experience several side effects after Botox treatment but these are rare and usually nothing to worry about. These include: 

  • Flu-like symptoms 
  • Respiratory infection 
  • Nausea
  • Temporary eyelid droop 
  • Temporary headaches

You may also feel some pain or muscle weakness. Similarly, redness and bruising to injection sites can show. Typically, these side effects subside after one week. 

In summary… 

Although Botox doesn’t solve the root cause of TMJ, it does provide instant, temporary relief to painful symptoms. 

On the other hand, you might find that Botox is the solution that works best for you. Particularly if your symptoms are mild. 

If you’ve been diagnosed for TMJ and spoken with your doctor about Botox, and still feel it’s the right option for you; feel free to contact us, we’re always happy to help and will provide you with a free consultation before going ahead with your treatment.

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