BOTOX. The word itself tends to conjure a specific feeling depending on the woman (or man) who hears it. For some, savior! For others, ouch! For still others, I don’t get it. Me? I’m on Team Savior. As a dentist I’ve found many benefits of BOTOX for my patients. BOTOX is an extremely useful tool to help treat patients with a variety of both medical and cosmetic needs, but most of all to add confidence, provide pain relief and put a genuinely happy smile on their face. After all, that’s what every dentist wants!
In this blog, I’ll introduce BOTOX treatments, three benefits of BOTOX including: BOTOX for migraines, BOTOX for TMJ and BOTOX® Cosmetic. I’ll wrap up the conversation by including general information about BOTOX costs.
What is BOTOX?
Patients often ask me about the science of BOTOX, or how it works. This FDA approved drug is what is known as a neuromodulator. According to the Oxford Scholarship Online, a “neuromodulator is a messenger released from a neuron in the central nervous system, or in the periphery, that affects groups of neurons, or effector cells that have the appropriate receptors.” In other words, I inject the BOTOX directly into the underlying muscle, which then relaxes and smooths out the appearance of the skin that covers it. The one injection typically lasts about three months.
Let’s explore 3 benefits of BOTOX:
Benefit of BOTOX #1: Helps Relieve Migraines
The first benefit of BOTOX is that it helps relieve migraines. Chronic migraines can be debilitating. I remember a good friend in college who regularly had to close all of the blinds and curtains in her apartment for hours at a time when a migraine struck. It didn’t matter what she had scheduled for the day, she was down for the count. While that was certainly inconvenient for a college student, the impact is much greater for adults with jobs, families and other responsibilities.
The International Headache Society defines a chronic migraine as a “headache occurring on 15 or more days/month for more than 3 months, which, on at least 8 days/month, has the features of migraine headache.” In addition, the headaches last for an extended duration and the pain can be more severe. Ouch. No wonder the people who suffer from this condition – and their families – want to get rid of the pain to improve their quality of everyday life.
Today some preventative medications can stave off the headache when taken before the pain reaches a certain point, and BOTOX is considered a preventative medication. Not only can BOTOX prevent on average 8 to 9 headache days and migraine/probable migraine days a month, versus six to seven for placebo, but it’s also the #1 prescribed branded chronic migraine treatment. More than 500,000 people with chronic migraine have received over 2 million BOTOX treatments since FDA approval in 2010, so one can assume that’s a lot more productivity returned to society, especially since one treatment generally takes about 15 minutes every three months. Plus, there’s no downtime. Once you leave the dentist’s office, you can continue your regularly busy life.
Generally, patients start with two treatments, with 12 weeks between each treatment. Some patients feel a difference four weeks after the first treatment. Each injection simply feels like a tiny pin prick because the needle is so fine, and I inject the BOTOX into shallow muscles of the head and neck just below the epidermis, or skin. Even my most pain intolerant patients generally go through the appointment with ease.
Benefits of BOTOX #2: Alleviation of TMJ
The second benefit of BOTOX is that it can alleviate pain caused by TMJ disorder. Anyone who has been diagnosed with TMD (temporomandibular joint dysfunction) or TMJ (temporomandibular joint) understands the lifetime of discomfort and sometimes downright pain that it can elicit. Historically, people with TMJ utilize their nightguard regularly – I know some who can’t sleep or even nap without it – but did you know that BOTOX is now commonly used to help relieve the symptoms?
People with TMJ generally experience grinding of the teeth which causes headaches, uncomfortable jaw tension and sometimes lockjaw. Others find themselves unable to sleep due to the discomfort, so not only are they groggy during the day, but they also have chronic facial pain. It’s no way to live.
But BOTOX can help. Again, it’s a non-surgical procedure that occurs in the dentist’s office during a 15 minute session, generally, but the appointment can last up to 30 minutes. I inject BOTOX in the jaw muscles, as well as the forehead and temple. From time to time, depending on the patient and his or her symptoms, it may be necessary to make an injection elsewhere. Most patients experience what feels like a pin prick which can be alleviated with numbing cream or a cold compress. After the session, the patient can simply walk out of the office and continue the day. Relief doesn’t necessarily happen immediately, but usually within a few days patients can tell a difference. Generally more than one treatment is necessary over the course of a few months, but we can discuss all of the possible scenarios during your visit.
My patients have been overjoyed that their pain or discomfort from years of suffering TMJ has been alleviated, so if you, a friend or family member experiences the symptoms of TMJ, BOTOX is worth considering.
Benefits of BOTOX #3: BOTOX Cosmetic Takes the Years Off
The final benefit of BOTOX is that it can take years off your appearance and make you feel sexy again. I can’t tell you how many patients of all ages come into my office and say “When did I turn into my mother?” While we all love mommy dearest, that doesn’t mean that we want to look like the family matriarch quite yet. Enter BOTOX Cosmetic to save the day, since a minor injection or two can take years off of a complexion.
Most people use BOTOX Cosmetic to target moderate to severe smile lines, frown lines, crow’s feet and forehead lines. We all love to laugh, but those years of sly smirks and full-blown belly laughs take their toll on our faces. Simply by smoothing certain lines on the face we can minimize the effect of all of those happy moments. In addition, those pesky lines can be caused by a loss of elasticity or collagen, genetics, dehydrated skin, smoking and a cause quite common in sunny Miami: sun damage. The years worshipping the sun on our beautiful beaches have life-long side effects. While smile lines around the eyes or laugh lines around the mouth are more noticeable as the years go by, they’re easily treated with BOTOX Cosmetic.
A common question I hear is about BOTOX prices, especially the cost of BOTOX Cosmetic injections. And the simple answer is that it depends. Like many cosmetic treatments – whether surgical or non-surgical – the cost of BOTOX Cosmetic injections and BOTOX treatment for medical purposes is determined by the extent of work patients would like done. Are you only interested in targeting the wrinkles on your forehead, and maybe BOTOX for eyes? Or do you feel that if you’re going in for BOTOX Cosmetic treatments that you may as well reduce the crows feet next to your eyes and the annoying bands in your neck that remind you of your mother? We can discuss your goals during a free consultation, so feel free to schedule one today.
Get BOTOX in Coral Gables, FL
I’ve helped countless women and men look and feel better with BOTOX and BOTOX Cosmetic, and many others ask who does the best BOTOX near me. When people ask me about the best BOTOX in Miami or Coral Gables, I let them know that they should go to a provider who has a solid history of helping patients, one with an office staff who are friendly and professional and someone who they feel comfortable with.
Not sure you want to commit? That’s okay! You’re welcome to visit me at South Gables Dental for a free BOTOX Cosmetic consultation, BOTOX for TMJ or BOTOX for migraines vs cosmetic discussion. I’m happy to discuss the various options, the benefits of BOTOX, and answer any questions that you may have. Click here to schedule your appointment to take the next step towards improving your life as you know it.
I’m Dr. Maria del Rocio Montoya, a Coral Gables dentist who specializes in preventative dentistry, general dentistry services, and cosmetic dentistry services (like teeth whitening). I provide personalized dental services, BOTOX treatments for TMJ and migraines, BOTOX Cosmetic, fillers and much more. Contact us to experience the South Gables Dental difference today!