There’s no question that living with the pain of temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD) is a real challenge. This disorder of your temporomandibular joint, or TMJ, causes significant disruption to your daily life. You may have difficulty eating food, chewing gum, or even talking.
Fortunately, BotoxⓇ and platelet-rich plasma treatments both work very well in managing your TMD. The only question is deciding which you want to try first. Dr. Joseph Z. Yousefian of Yousefian Orthodontics for Children, Teens and Adults in Bellevue, Washington, explains more about these treatment options and the benefits of each.
TMD is a disorder of the temporomandibular joint. The joint is attached to your facial muscles and acts as a hinge to open and close your jaw. If you have TMJ disorder, you may experience the following symptoms:
TMJ disorders also may cause a clicking sound that others can hear while you’re chewing or when you open your mouth. TMJ disorders don’t always cause pain, but if they do, you should definitely have an evaluation.
One of the first things you should do if you suffer from TMJ disorder is to get and regularly wear a mouthguard to sleep. Grinding your teeth, especially while you sleep, is common in TMJ disorders. Failing to wear a mouthguard can result in breaking or chipping your teeth.
You may also want to begin a meditation practice to help you manage your stress. Although it’s not a direct correlation, many people with TMD find that stress makes their symptoms much worse.
We also offer two treatments at Dr. Yousefian’s office: Botox® and platelet-rich plasma, or PRP.
Both Botox and PRP work very well to treat TMD, but they work in different ways.
Botox is an injection of a purified form of onabotulinumtoxinA. This is the same Botox that is sometimes used in cosmetic applications, such as to reduce signs of wrinkles. But it also has powerful effects in paralyzing the facial muscles that cause the symptoms of TMD.
Like Botox, platelet-rich plasma, or PRP, is injected into your facial muscles. But it works by stimulating your body’s ability to heal itself. PRP injections are developed by doing a regular blood draw from you, then putting the blood into a machine called a centrifuge. This concentrates the platelets. When these concentrated platelets are injected into painful areas of your body — in this case, your jaw — they can promote healing of your TMJ.
When you come in for a consultation with Dr. Yousefian, he will go over several factors with you. Items he will take into consideration include whether you have tried Botox, if you have any health conditions that may rule out Botox, or whether you’re seeking short-term or long-term relief.
Botox is very effective in reducing TMD symptoms, but it has to be repeated every few months. PRP is more effective over the long term, but it may cost more. Each case is individual, depending on how severe your TMD symptoms are.
If you have TMJ pain, you deserve to get treatment. You could begin feeling less pain in as little as a single visit. Call Yousefian Orthodontics for Children, Teens and Adults or request an appointment online.