Botox / Xeomin for Teeth Grinding & Clenching

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Grinding or clenching one’s teeth (technically known as bruxism) is a very common problem that is estimated to affect as much as a third of the general U.S. population to varying degrees. This could happen during sleep but also when awake.

Depending on how often this is done or how severely, the dental damage can be extensive. Bruxism can wear away the enamel surface of the teeth (despite it being the hardest bone in the body!); it could also wear into the next layer, the softer layer that is dentin, and in extreme cases can even expose the nerve.

The result can be pits or wear facets in teeth resulting in decay, infected root, loosening of teeth, or even tooth fracture, not to mention damage to existing dental work such as fillings and dental crowns. This could cause sensitivity or even pain in the teeth, sore muscles of the jaw, face, and neck, headaches felt in the temples, and difficulty opening and closing the jaw (known as Temporomandibular disorder or TMD).

What Causes Teeth Grinding or Clenching?

The causes of teeth grinding and/or clenching could be anything from large tonsils, snoring, large tongue, physical or psychological stresses, and can be aggravated by smoking and excessive consumption of caffeine. Relaxation techniques, such as hypnosis, biofeedback and meditation can help. Further damage can be prevented by having your dentist create a personalized mouthguard to wear while you sleep. This would help mostly if the bruxism is being done during night time.

What Makes Botox an Effective Solution?

Botox, the famous wrinkle-relaxing injectable, has also been found to alleviate jaw tension for three to six months, resulting in both less grinding and/or clenching of the teeth and alleviating the TMD symptoms. Xeomin is an alternative which works similar to Botox and is made of a similar ingredient.

Dentists have a lot of experience in giving injections, such as local anesthetics, than most medical professionals. And as such are a great source when it comes to addressing tight masticatory muscles that are involved in clenching/grinding; and we do that in our San Francisco office for those who are good candidates and are interested.

Call for an appointment today at either our San Francisco or Sunnyvale office and see what your best options are for treatment of bruxims.

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