We can use various treatment methods depending on the severity of teeth clenching and grinding cases. Although night bite plates or bite splints that we have used since classical years are among the treatments we still cannot give up, we are now using the botox application quite routinely. In very advanced cases, in cases where the temporomandibular joint disc is displaced or deformed, the use of plate is an indispensable treatment option. But besides that, we absolutely apply botox to dissolve the spasm resulting from overactivity of the muscle groups during teeth clenching and grinding, and to prevent unconscious teeth clenching.
In brief, if the case is suitable for botox application, we definitely add it to our treatment plan. Because only the use of night bite plate is a treatment option which is substantially under the control of patient, and it is not possible to know whether the patient uses it as prescribed during the day. With botox application, the patient will be able to perform normal functions, that is swallowing, eating, drinking and speaking in daily life, and will not be able to perform teeth clenching and grinding movements, called paranormal function. Thus, by adding the use of night bite plate to the treatment plan, if necessary, we allow the temporomandibular joint disc and bones to return to their normal functions over time.
As is generally known, botox application will lose its effect within 6 months. Our expectation here is to dissolve the spasm by reducing the muscular activity to the normal level, to remove paranormal functions and to allow the temporomandibular joint to regain its normal health during this period. If these expectations are fulfilled, the patient's pain will completely disappear over time.
The importance of botox application is great in the treatment of teeth clenching and grinding. But as in every case, early diagnosis is of great importance in such cases. As we can treat a case of muscle spasm and pain developed as a result of teeth clenching and grinding with a one-time botox application, if irreversible injuries have occurred in the temporomandibular joint, further treatment options should be considered.