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Botox® as an Alternative Treatment for TMJ

Temporomandibular joint disorders (TMJD or TMJ), are notoriously difficult to diagnose and treat.  Many of the related symptoms, such as headaches and earaches, often lead doctors to diagnose a sinus condition, as opposed to a problem with the jaw joint.  TMJ symptoms often change in severity, depending on how much stress the sufferer is experiencing.  During an intensely stressful period, grinding teeth, debilitating earaches and lockjaw may occur.  Botox® injections are sometimes an effective and painless way to alleviate tension in the temporomandibular joint; reducing jaw pain, headaches and suffering.

Botox® is commonly associated with cosmetic practices, for example, eliminating glabellar lines and facial wrinkles.  Recently however, Botox® has become an increasingly popular TMJ treatment.  Although some TMJ symptoms may improve without any specific treatment, Botox® offers fast and long-lasting relief for those that do not.

Here are several of the major benefits Botox® offers TMJ sufferers:

  • Elimination of headaches caused by nighttime grinding.
  • Minimization of lockjaw.
  • Reduced discomfort when using the jaw.
  • Reduced shoulder and neck pain.
  • Substantially reduced jaw tension.

How does Botox® work?

The temporomandibular joint is located on both sides of the head where the skull adjoins the jawbone.  This joint is constantly being used for a variety of daily activities such as chewing, biting, speaking and swallowing.  The most prominent causes of TMJ are jaw displacement and stress-related involuntary jaw movements.  Botox® expediently alleviates temporomandibular tension by relaxing the jaw muscles.  This means that in most cases, the unconscious jaw movements cease completely, and the grinding-related headaches are kept at bay.

One of the major advantages of Botox® is that normal functions such as speaking, swallowing and biting are left unaffected.  The only major change is the reduction in pain and discomfort.  In addition, controlling TMJ can also prevent serious dental problems from occurring later. TMJ, if left untreated, can contribute to tooth decay, gum disease and the loosening of teeth.

What’s involved when getting Botox® injections?

Prior to administering Botox® injections, the dentist needs to check the patient’s suitability for treatment.  When used in conjunction with certain medications and substances, Botox® may not produce the desired results.  It is exceptionally important therefore, to be honest about prior medical history.  Botox® is not recommended for pregnant or lactating women.

The Botox® injections take 10-20 minutes to administer, depending on the amount required.  The Botox® procedure will be performed at the dental office, since it is non-surgical.  Driving ability will not be impaired by the treatment, so there is no need for a designated driver.  The injections are no more painful than a bug bite or pinprick, but nitrous oxide (laughing gas) can be used to reduce anxiety if necessary.

Normal activity can be resumed immediately after the Botox® treatment, but strenuous activity should be avoided for 24 hours after treatment.  It may take several days to feel the full benefits of the treatment, but Botox® will continue to work for up to 3 months.

If you have any questions or concerns about TMJ or the Botox® treatment, please contact our office.

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Testimonials

Dear Dr. Muduli ,

I want to take this opportunity to thank you for the excellent care and attention given to me during my office visit. I really appreciate your kind consideration and review of my medical condition. The time taken to explain to me the various options and your expert opinion is greatly appreciated. You have demonstrated to me your wisdom and knowledge of the profession. Once again, thanks for helping me and giving me high quality care and attention.

Peter

Dear Dr. Muduli,
I will write to you with warm and sincere thanks for extracting my wisdom teeth. I must say that you exemplify a superior level of professionalism, proficiency and confidence when you work. I was initially very apprehensive at the start of the procedure. However you and your staff were able to relax and provide me reassurance. You performed outstandingly and for that I am very grateful.
Please know that I will proudly recommend you to anyone that I should encounter who may require your services. You exhibit truly iconic poise and are a model to be replicated. Despite this, I do sincerely hope I never have to see you again. Once more, my deepest thanks and best regards.

Christopher

Top qualities: Great Results, Expert, High Integrity

“The quintessential professional in his field; Dr. Muduli's attention to detail, his superior skill, and unparalleled bedside manner make him a rare find in a competitive and sometimes confusing arena of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery. My first experience with his professionalism and skill was when Dr. Muduli's comforting and professional approach put my son at ease while treating him for a difficult procedure to remove significantly impacted wisdom teeth. At the time his practice was local to me. The results were excellent. I was so pleased with how he cared for my son that when I needed extensive maxillofacial treatment I made the trip to his new office 23 miles from my home. A worthwhile trip I would readily do again. Bobby is a health professional I trust with my children and will gladly go out of my way in terms of travel for his services. I highly recommend him.” November 8, 2011

Francis

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