Botox – A Therapeutic Agent
Botox, also known as Botulinum Toxin (BT) — a deadly toxin when ingested, but a very resourceful therapeutic agent when injected intramuscularly — has broadened the horizon of Dentistry. BT has demonstrated a significant value in cases with Temporalis and Masseter hypertrophy associated with some parafunctional habits of bruxism, clenching and grinding. It offers a minimally invasive approach to manage and treat selected suitable cases with minimum complications.
Botox or Dysport are approved by the US FDA for a wide scope of myofascial pain and dysfunction syndrome. What makes it safe and widely valuable is the transient, reversible and relatively safe application. In my dental practice, I have found a significant benefit in patients who are clenching to the point of chronic headaches, constant facial muscular pain, and fractured teeth — in some cases actual splitting of the teeth in half due to excessive force. Botox therapy in conjunction with a nighttime occlusal splint significantly reduces the above risk.
There are certain contraindications that are usually discussed prior to the Botox therapy – for example pregnant and nursing women, patients on certain medications, hypersensitivity or allergy to BT, etc. We discuss your medical history thoroughly prior to referring you to a specialist for the Botox Therapy.