Botox® for Masseter Reduction

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Your masseter is the strongest muscle in your body based on weight, with the ability to close your molars with a force as great as 200 pounds. So when things go wrong with this little muscle, it can be a big problem. An overactive masseter can cause everything from headaches and jaw pain to a bulky lower face (sometimes called "chipmunk cheeks").

Fortunately, neuromodulators like BOTOX® Cosmetic can quickly relax your masseter to provide relief from discomfort as well as a jaw-slimming effect. At Hillcrest Plastic Surgery & Dermatology, we regularly use this injectable to address our patients’ clinical and cosmetic concerns. To find out more about BOTOX for your jaw, read on or book a consultation at 407-999-2585.

What Is the Masseter?

The masseter is located at the back of your cheek and runs along the angle of your jaw. This bulky muscle allows you to close your mouth when chewing. When it is very developed, it creates a squared-off jawline. Many women prefer a V-shaped face or softer jawline, which makes a prominent masseter muscle undesirable.

The masseter muscle may be large due to normal anatomy. Genetics plays a role in the size of this muscle for many individuals. Others may have a large masseter muscle because of different influences.

If you’re someone who often clenches or grinds your teeth, also known as bruxism, your masseter may be larger than average. Like any muscle that’s constantly getting a workout, habitual clenching can cause it to overdevelop. As the masseter grows over time, it can change the shape of your face, resulting in a more severe or square jawline.

How Does BOTOX Treat Jaw Pain?

In addition to causing enlargement of the masseter muscle, bruxism can also cause trauma to the temporomandibular joint. This can result in tension and pain in the jaw, head, neck, and shoulders. Mouth guards, splints, and specified exercises may decrease the discomfort.

Another treatment option is injecting the muscle with BOTOX. Neuromodulator injections cause the muscle to loosen and remain relaxed for months. This also eases clenching and grinding without the necessity of oral appliances. 

Does Jaw BOTOX Affect Chewing?

Although some patients are concerned that BOTOX Cosmetic injections will cause the masseter to become paralyzed and make chewing food impossible, this is not the case. The muscle becomes relaxed, not frozen, and because other smaller muscles also contribute to mastication, the treatment does not interfere with chewing. Occasionally, a patient may have a different sensation when chewing tough foods immediately after treatment, but this typically resolves after a few days.

How Do BOTOX Cosmetic Injections Work for Non-Surgical Jaw Reduction?

Most people would agree that a strong jawline is an asset to a person’s appearance. Men with square jawlines are often considered fit, highly motivated, and appealing to the opposite sex. While many of these attributes also apply to women, others feel their strong jawline is unflattering, and a softer look may be more desirable. BOTOX Cosmetic injections for masseter reduction are a minimally invasive alternative to surgery that can soften the lines and make your face more feminine-looking.

When BOTOX Cosmetic is injected into the masseter, the muscle temporarily relaxes, which gives it a smaller appearance. The procedure also causes it to shrink a little over time. The injection itself takes about five minutes. It is a highly effective solution for softening the jawline without surgery. As a bonus, the treatment involves little to no discomfort and doesn’t require downtime.

Surgical reduction entails shaving down the jawbone and can be expensive as well as uncomfortable. BOTOX Cosmetic injections are the more desirable, cost-effective, recovery-free method for many people considering changing the look of a square jawline.

When Will I See Masseter BOTOX Results?

Masseter reduction with BOTOX Cosmetic injections does not produce immediate results. It usually takes a few weeks to notice the change. However, within six weeks, the full effect of your treatment should be noticeable. In addition, you might find that masseter BOTOX provides immediate relief from bruxism-related problems.

How Long Does Masseter BOTOX Last?

The results of this treatment last an average of six months, though you might permanently reduce the size of your masseter muscle if you’re able to break the cycle of clenching and grinding. Patients who choose this method of jaw reduction will often have consecutive treatments to keep the jawline looking softer.

Schedule Your Orlando Masseter BOTOX Consultation

Whether you want to round out the look of your jawline or need relief from TMJ dysfunction, masseter BOTOX could help. Contact Hillcrest Plastic Surgery & Dermatology’s Orlando, Florida practice at 407-999-2585 to schedule a consultation. One of our experienced board-certified plastic surgeons, Dr. Fernando Ovalle Jr. or Dr. Kenrick Spence, can answer any questions about nonsurgical and surgical jaw reduction techniques at your appointment.

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