A new Botox tool for dentists

    submitted by Dr. Michael Spadafora, D.D.S., Bucks County Dental Design,

    One of the biggest challenges for any small business is staying on top of trends and technology.  This is especially true in the field of dental health care.

    Technologies, as well as treatment modalities and techniques, are constantly shifting and improving, requiring a strong commitment of time and money to stay abreast of these changes. Dentists must be life-long students.

    Good dental health teams will continually learn and grow. One dental problem that has seen the advent of a new treatment option is TMJ (temporomandibular joint) disorder, as well as bruxism (teeth grinding). These conditions are often painful and can be contributing factors to other dental problems.

    For many years the primary treatment modality has been the use of a night guard, which, when worn consistently, can provide relief for these problems.  The night guard has limitations.

    Patients are rarely able to wear them during the day because they often interfere with speech.  Although the guard does “train” the jaw to stay in the correct position, the jaw can revert when the night guard is not used. That said, the night guard is a wonderful and cost-effective treatment for TMJ disorder and bruxism, and has been the standard of care for many years.

    A “newer” treatment option is the use of Botox injections to partially “turn off” the muscles in the jaw, which can provide relief from the grinding and teeth clenching. While Botox treatment is not indicated for every TMJ or bruxism patient, it is another “tool” for the dentist to use.

    To safely treat patients with Botox, dentists must complete additional training. Certification in Botox injections can be achieved through various agencies, such as the American Academy of Facial Esthetics, and requires course work and hands on training.

    Dentists are usually able to complete this training efficiently due to their vast training in the facial anatomy and nerve structure, as well as constant experience in giving facial injections. Call Bucks County Dental Design today at 215-364-2420.

    PHOTO CAP: Botox offers an alternative solution for some patients suffering from TMJ. 

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