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Botox® in Dentistry

botox in dentistryBotox® in Dentistry

Picture this: you’re at your local dental office, having some routine work done. While you’re in the waiting room, you see a small display in outlining how your dentist can treat those stubborn fine lines and wrinkles in your forehead while he works on your teeth – helping you leave their office with a whiter smile and a fresher complexion – all without ever even having to make a second trip to your local medical spa.

Sound unusual? It’s becoming more common and is a growing trend in dentistry.

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Adding Botox® is an Easy & Natural Addition for Dentists

Since dentists already have a working knowledge of facial anatomy, structure, nerves and muscles, it makes sense that they would have the knowledge and credentials to administer Botox®. Currently, only a small fraction of practicing dentists utilize Botox®, but it’s not for the wrinkle-smoothing abilities that we are familiar.

Botox®, a derivative of the botulinum toxin with the ability to temporarily paralyze muscles after being injected into the neuro-muscular junction, can assist dentists in many ways.

For example, Botox® is an effective treatment for temporomandibular joint pain, an ailment that causes the jaw and facial muscles to clench and be overactive, causing substantial jaw pain and discomfort.

Botox® can help these tense and overactive muscles relax, thus reducing the pain associated with TMJ. Even orthodontists are looking to Botox® to help teeth from re-crowding after braces have been used, and to reduce the look of a low gum line.

Botox® can also be used for denture patients by modifying tight muscles and thus helping new dentures fit and feel comfortable in the patient’s mouth.

But is it possible that Botox® can be used as a wrinkle-reducing supplementary treatment for those patients that are visiting the dentist for a teeth cleaning? The answer appears to be yes, and many dentists are hopping on board to this new and profitable trend.

Botox®: A lucrative add-on treatment to modern dentistry

Botox® treatments have certainly increased in popularity over the last decade. In fact, Botox is now making more money in the aesthetics field than most other plastic surgery procedures combined.

However, when you think about injectables, you picture a medical spa or a plastic surgeon. So how can this trend fit into dentistry?

Well, as mentioned before, while in the dentist’s chair, you’re already being treated by an expert on the facial structures, nerves and muscles – so why not offer it as an add-on procedure to the practice?

People are very busy today, and patients will gladly “kill two birds with one stone”, so to speak, and receive a beauty treatment while getting their regular dentistry work done.

Providing Botox® in a dental office eliminates the need for a separate practice

Credibility is always high in a dentist’s office. Your dentist has taken years of schooling to learn their craft. Who better than to administer treatments than this type of trained medical professional?

Help your patient find that convenience factor, avoiding a separate trip to a medical aesthetic office to have their Botox® treatment.

There is a lot of money, permits and business decisions involved in opening up a separate medical spa. Why bother, when you as a dentist already have your office in place, your business rolling and your patients secured?

Many dentists today are taking adjunctive training for Botox® administration so they can offer another service within their dental practice.

Aesthetics and Dentistry – a common interest to improve people’s appearances

botox in dentistry
When you think about it, dentistry and aesthetics are quite similar, especially when we’re examining cosmetic dentistry. People will visit a cosmetic dentistry office to have many treatments that will enhance their look, just as people visit an aesthetic spa to do the same.

For example, cosmetic dentists are training to administer treatments as simple as teeth whitening, to the more complicated porcelain veneers, dental implants or repairing broken or unsightly teeth.

It’s no secret that a beautiful, straight and gleaming smile can do wonders for one’s self-esteem and overall well-being. So why not add Botox® to that mix? How wonderful to visit your dental office and leave with a smooth complexion and beautiful white teeth!

Dermal Fillers – an additional add-on

Why stop at Botox® when you can offer dermal fillers as well? Dermal fillers, which, like Botox® are also categorized as injectables, include treatments such as Juvederm®, Boletero® and Restylane®.

These treatments fill the facial lines with a substance rather than acting on the wrinkle-causing muscle. Usually, the fillers include hyaluronic acid, a sugar molecule that holds many times its volume in water.

It works by expanding in your skin much in the way a sponge increases size when containing water. The result is a smooth, plumped out and supple complexion, with results lasting anywhere from four months to a year.

These are procedures that also can easily be administered by a properly trained dentist, all while you are getting your teeth cleaned!

Getting the Appropriate Training

Although dentists have a full understanding of the anatomy of the face, it is important that they are trained in proper Botox® and injectables administration. Because of the growing popularity of these treatments, the demand for aesthetic courses has followed.

The IAPAM’s Aesthetic Medicine Symposium program trains medical professionals, including dentists, to safely and effectively administer injectables, as well as emphasizing the importance of dosing parameters of Botox®, any possible adverse reactions and how to avoid them, and more.

How to get into the business of Botox

Dental patients are often repeat patients, so there is a strong doctor-patient relationship there. Dentists can capitalize on this rapport by introducing Botox® and other injectable procedures via a simple conversation while you are getting a cleaning, or a brochure to read while waiting in the lobby.

Patients will surely see the benefit in improving their appearance while getting a filling or cleaning – after all, they are already potentially frozen! After all, where is the difference between a needle in the jaw vs. a needle in the forehead!

Further, introducing the positive implications behind such appearance enhancers as Botox® or Juvederm® into an industry like dentistry can add significant positive associations. It’s no secret that dentistry can have negative associations that run deep, with many people feeling anxiety and fear regarding visiting the dentist.

Before adding Botox® to your practice, it is important to check with your State dental board to make sure it is within your scope of practice. Most States will allow dentists to perform the cosmetic injections, however some States, like Nevada, also allows qualified hygienists to provide Botox® and dermal filler injections.

Give patients another reason to be loyal to your dentistry practice

Perhaps if a patient knows that they will leave their dentist not only with clean teeth, but with a fresh and wrinkle free complexion, it could increase profits not only for the dental work, but also for the adjunctive treatments as well.

With the overwhelming success that medical spas and aesthetic clinics have seen over the last few decades, it only makes sense for dentists to join this booming industry.

They are already armed with the office, the experience and the credibility that is needed to perform such aesthetic treatments: all that is left is to be properly trained on administering the injectable treatments and to advertise their new services!


Botox is a trademark of Allergan Inc.

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