Dr Harry Singh explains how botulinum toxin injections, using Azzalure™ can be used to treat bruxism, teeth clenching and reduce the appearance of a square jaw.
Our jaw is a pretty clever thing, we move it up and down regularly throughout the day as we talk, chew, bite and yawn. It also plays an important role in creating a pleasing and attractive shape to the human face. A wide jaw, which can create a square-shaped-look to the lower face, is quite a common occurrence, and although desirable in men as a sign of strength and masculine beauty, it is not considered as attractive in a female.
The appearance of a square-like jaw, is caused by prominent masseter or chewing muscles. If you place your hands at the end of your jaw bone, just below your ears and then clench your teeth together you will feel the masseter muscles as they harden under your fingertips.
In the case of a square jaw, the masseter tend to be excessively active muscles, which means that they have become somewhat ‘pumped up’ through additional exercise, usually as a result of teeth grinding or clenching. The medical name for teeth grinding is bruxism, and it is an incredibly common condition whereby you move your jaw, usually whilst sleeping, and grind the surfaces of your teeth together. This has an effect on both wearing down the surface of your teeth, usually corrected through the wearing of a dental shield at night, but also it exercises your masseter muscles making them more bulky and strong, leading to the square jaw appearance. Thankfully though we now have a solution to both – botulinum toxin injections.
I have been using Azzalure™ botulinum toxin, which is a prescription only medicine brand just like Botox®, at my clinic in Stevenage, Hertfordshire for well over fifteen years. Although these products are most commonly used as anti-wrinkle injections for reducing crow’s feet and frown lines, botulinum toxin also has many medical and practical applications where over-active muscles or muscle spasms are causing a problem. In this case, we would use it to treat the masseter muscle to reduce its activity to more manageable levels.
As a dentist, I am very familiar with the anatomy of the jaw and have encountered many hundreds of patients over the years who regularly grind their teeth in their sleep, so I can advise you during a face-to-face consultation if prescribing botulinum toxin to treat your masseter muscles will both reduce the dental implications of your bruxism, as well as improve the square-like appearance of your jawline, if this is of concern.
Treating the masseter muscles with Azzalure is an advanced technique, so it is important that you see someone with experience, training and understanding of the appropriate dosing required and the effect on the anatomical structures. Seeing an advanced practitioner, like myself, means that you will reduce your risk from over treatment which could weaken the muscles too much and impact on the movement of your jaw and your ability to bite or chew properly, or even open and close your mouth.
Treatment for a square jaw and bruxism with botulinum toxin is not a permanent solution but will last for approximately 4 to 6 months. You will require regular, repeat treatments to maintain the correction but you should notice a reduction in the dosing required to maintain the muscle activity at a level which helps you to stop grinding your teeth and brings your face back into a more attractive shape.
Why not arrange a consultation appointment with me, Dr Harry Singh at Aesthetics in Stevenage, Hertfordshire and we can discuss if you have over-active masseter muscles which could benefit from Azzalure injections; please call us on 01438 300111.