What is the masseter muscle?

The masseter is the primary facial muscle used for chewing food. This is attached to the lower jawbone and cheekbone. You can find the masseters muscles by clenching your teeth, this is the raised bump you feel from the side of your face.

 

What is TMD and bruxism?

Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) dysfunction or TMD, affects the muscles that move the jaw, resulting in pain and limitation in movement of the jaw joint.

Symptoms can include:

  • Jaw pain
  • Muscle spasms
  • Headaches
  • Ear aches
  • Difficulty opening the mouth

 

Bruxism refers to excessive and involuntary teeth grinding or jaw clenching, which usually occurs while sleeping but can happen throughout the day. It happens as a result of an overly active masseter muscle, and is often triggered by stress.

Bruxism can lead to the following:

  • Headaches
  • Jaw pain
  • Chipped teeth
  • Teeth fracture
  • Neck and shoulder aches
  • Worn down teeth
  • Tooth sensitivity
  • Reduction of tooth enamel
  • Difficulty chewing
  • Changed appearance of face (square/wider jaw)

How do muscle relaxants/anti-wrinkle injections work?

Anti-wrinkle injections are made from a purified protein that causes muscles to relax when injected into the area, by preventing the transmission of chemical signals between the brain and the muscles which tell them to contract. They are commonly used to reduce wrinkles and prevent further lines from forming, as they cause less facial movement.

 

Treating teeth grinding with muscle relaxant injections

Injecting Anti wrinkle injections on the masseters muscles leads to a reduction of movement and therefore less grinding and clenching pressure is exerted onto the jaw and teeth.

It reduces the strength and activity of the muscle, which also reduces or completely stops the grinding and clenching of the teeth and jaw. This will prevent any further damage to your teeth and helps assist with the jaw pain, aches, tension and headaches, as well as the constant teeth grinding when you are asleep.

By weakening the muscle, it will also shrink over time, giving the appearance of a slimmer, more V-shaped face and reducing the square-shaped jaw.

 

How long does the treatment last?

The effect of muscle relaxant injections lasts for approximately 4-6 months, and when treatment is repeated the muscle will continue to reduce in size over time, meaning treatments can become spaced further apart.

 

How long does the treatment take?

Your appointment will take approximately 15 minutes, and is a very quick and easy process.

After your appointment, it’s important to not apply makeup and avoid any strenuous activity or exercise for 24 hours, and to avoid rubbing/pressing on your face or lying down for 4 hours.