A women relishing in her new smooth skinThe dental field is slowly evolving to accept BOTOX® (Botulinum toxin) as a mainstream treatment option. While BOTOX® certainly can be used effectively for cosmetic wrinkle reduction, its most exciting uses in dentistry aren’t cosmetic at all.

Our office in Leawood, Kansas offers the use of botulinum neurotoxin (BOTOX® / Xeomin) and dermal fillers for dental esthetic and therapeutic uses in the oral and maxillofacial areas. These uses include treating dental and facial esthetics for volumizing nasolabial folds, marionette lines, lifting up the corners of the mouth using anatomical landmarks to decrease recurrence of angular cheilitis (red, swollen and cracked corners of the mouth), improve a severe “gummy smile” and for the treatment of TMJ syndrome, headaches, migraines, and bruxism. BOTOX® use as a wholly cosmetic procedure will likely not exist at dentist’s offices because the first priority of a dentist is oral healthcare. Due to our extensive training in facial and oral anatomy, health, and function, dentists may be the best qualified to administer BOTOX®.

What is Botox®?

BOTOX® is used to block nerve signals that control muscle movement. This decreases the ability of the muscle to contract and softens the skin surrounding the injection site. Results are typically seen after a few hours to a few days and a BOTOX® treatment can last up to three months!

BOTOX® is used as an alternative treatment for TMJ (temporo-mandibular joint) disorders or TMD and associated jaw tension and pain. BOTOX® provides long-term relief of TMD by reducing the intensity, frequency, and duration of recurrent migraines. Adverse effects from BOTOX® treatment are uncommon, mild and transient making it an attractive option for adjunctive therapy for muscular TMD in patients who have failed initial conservative therapy and systemic pharmacotherapy.

Patients with various types of TMJ (temporo-mandibular joint) disorders can often benefit from BOTOX® treatments. Much of the pain associated with of TMJ (temporo-mandibular joint) disorders is due to muscular pain from hyperactivity of the muscles of mastication. These TMJ disorders can cause significant discomfort for patients and treatment options have been limited in the past. By using BOTOX® to relax these muscles, dentists can provide pain relief that has eluded some patients with these conditions. Here at IronHorse Family and Cosmetic Dentistry in Leawood, Kansas we understand that anyone that has ever suffered from a migraine knows how excruciating and debilitating they can be. The smallest amount of sound or the faintest amount of light can send you crawling into a dark closet for escape. Many people are not aware that therapeutic BOTOX® treatment can offer significant relief to patients who suffer from frequent migraines.

Bruxism (grinding of teeth) and clenching can also be minimized with BOTOX® treatment by reducing the force of the muscular contractions involved. It can make a useful adjunct therapy to night guard appliances.

BOTOX® treatment at IronHorse Family and Cosmetic Dentistry in Leawood, Kansas is also helpful in reducing a high lip line or “gummy smile” without gingival surgery and crown lengthening. By relaxing the lip muscles, a lower more aesthetic smile line can be achieved in a less invasive manner. While the BOTOX® treatments are temporary, it at least gives patients a more immediate and less aggressive treatment option other than surgery.

Edentulous patients (patients without any teeth) can also benefit from BOTOX® treatment in cases where the lip muscles have become repositioned due to decreased vertical dimension, and it is difficult to accommodate new dentures. Botox can be used to relax and retrain the muscles around a new denture making the transition easier and more successful. BOTOX® treatment is also used around marionette lines (lines at the corners of the mouth) to decrease angular cheilitis episodes (red swollen and cracked corners of the mouth).

Approximately 3-4 weeks after the initial treatment, patients will return for reevaluation and documentation any adverse effects and/or suboptimal responses. Some patients may require a booster treatment at that time. Additional BOTOX® treatments are determined by patients’ history and clinical examination, and pain diaries are also a useful guide to help in patient directed therapy. It may take several weeks before patients experience the maximum pain relief from BOTOX® treatments. Although the typical duration of efficacy is 12 weeks, we have noted tremendous variability among patients with respect to optimal dosing frequency.

Our Doctor here at IronHorse Family and Cosmetic Dentistry in Leawood, Kansas is educated in the specialty of administering BOTOX® treatments due to having additional experience with the anatomy and function of facial muscles, this is a valuable asset in the administration of BOTOX®.

Here at IronHorse Family and Cosmetic Dentistry in Leawood, Kansas, we help our patients enjoy the beautiful, healthy, and fully functional smiles that they deserve. With BOTOX®, we can achieve a number of things for your smile, from improving the esthetics of the facial structures surrounding your smile to alleviating the chronic pain and discomfort associated with of TMJ (temporo-mandibular joint) disorders.

Below are a few common questions that people may have about Botox®. If you have another question that is not on this page, give us a call at (913) 553-5222. We will be happy to go over any and all questions that you have before helping you draw out your best self.

How does Botox® treatment work?

Botox® treatment involves an injection of botulinum toxin that helps to prevent muscle contraction by attaching to the nerve endings of muscles. Before completing the procedure, we will need to have our team examine your health and determine if Botox® is the best choice of procedure.

Once we gather important health information, we will determine if Botox® will be an effective treatment option for you. If it is, we will then go over the process itself and schedule an appointment for the procedure. After the procedure, the patient will begin to see improvement in approximately 3 to 10 days.

How long does a procedure take?

The amount of time the procedure will take depends entirely on the type of Botox® and amount of Botox® necessary. At IronHorse Family & Cosmetic Dentistry, our team can go over the variety of uses that Botox® can offer you. We recommend that you ask all questions about the procedure with Dr. Bowdoin at a consultation meeting.

We will address all concerns and questions prior to completing the procedure. In many cases, the procedure may only take around an hour altogether. We will go over the exact length of the procedure with you during the consultation.

What is the cost?

The cost of a Botox® procedure and treatment will depend on several factors, which include:

  • How large the treatment area is
  • Your current state of health
  • Any allergies
  • If you received a Botox® treatment in the last four to six months prior to this appointment
  • The type of Botox® you want and the area of the body you want it in

We will help determine the cost of the procedure after we go over the type of procedure and all of the necessary steps at your consultation.

Is the treatment painful?

Contrary to popular belief, a Botox® procedure is not painful and you will be able to remain calm during the procedure. While the idea of needles near one’s face is not the best mental image, we can ensure that it is not as bad as some might believe. We will use a thin needle and inject small amounts of botulinum toxin into the system.

We can complete this procedure fairly quickly and with little to no pain. The patient will also be able to return to work or other tasks of daily life right after the procedure.

What can I expect for recovery time after the treatment?

You will be able to return to your daily activities directly following the procedure. It is important to avoid rubbing or massaging the areas we treat with Botox® since it will cause the toxin to move toward another area of the body. You can also call us if there are any other odd health issues you begin to notice following the procedure.

When will I begin to notice the results?

The results can take around 3 to 10 days to fully take effect. However, people will not be able to notice that you went through a Botox® treatment but will notice your new appearance.