Botox injections have now been found to have not just applications in clinical medicine but also aesthetic medicine. As a dentist, you are constantly asked how to improve your patients smile. This often requires a combination of Botox® injections and dermal filler injections as a part of a dental practices services which will enhance the overall profitability of the practice, but meet your patients needs. As a dentist your time is limited, and you want to make sure your investment is with the best Botox® training program.
Is it Legal for Dentists to Inject Botox®?
In many states, it is now legal for dentists to offer Botox® and fillers to their patients, for both therapeutic purposes (TMJ treatment) and cosmetic enhancements. Consistent with this trend, we at the IAPAM are seeing more and more dentists who have an interest being expertly trained on how to safely and artfully add Botox® and dermal fillers to their dental practices.
The issues with dentists injecting Botox® are the same with any healthcare professional injecting it – it is all about whether they are trained to do so. Granted Botox® injections are hardly similar to complex as a root canal, but it is still necessary to fully understand the intricate details of the facial anatomy to produce the desired results. Side effects from botulinum toxin injections can occur and dentists need to be aware of them and capable of handling them.
In other words, even if you can legally inject Botox®, it is critical that dentists take additional hands-on training to fully understand patient selections, complications, and proper injection technique for cosmetic injections.
What are the issues and controversy with Dentists injecting Botox®?
Well, the issues with dentists injecting Botox® are the same with any health care professional injecting it – it is all about whether they are trained to do so. Granted Botox® injections are hardly similar to complex heart surgery, but it is still necessary to understand the intricate details of human anatomy to produce the desired results. Side effects can occur and the treating professional needs to be aware of them and capable of handling them.
In other words, dentists who are trained in prescribing and administering Botox® injections will likely be allowed to inject Botox®.
There is a lot of discussions ongoing as to whether dentists should, in fact, be allowed to inject Botox® injections for cosmetic purposes. Discussions on a number of medical forums have constantly stated that they should be performed by trained plastic surgeons that have a better understanding of facial anatomy than dentists do. This concurs with some of the state board’s guidance of dentists only using Botox® for dental-related procedures.
However, the dentists would argue otherwise, stating that their knowledge of facial and maxillofacial anatomy is good if not better than many physicians, thus making them the right people to administer Botox®. It would appear that this argument will continue on for years to come.
Dentists and Cosmetic Injections
Cosmetic injectable treatments complement procedures dentists perform daily. A patient might want to highlight new teeth veneers with fuller lips, a less noticeable nasal labial fold, which would require a dermal filler injection. Or the patients may want to have those smoker lines removed from around their mouths, which is a Botox injection. Dentists and orthodontists are experts at facial analysis and products like Botox® and fillers offer dentists an effective tool in their efforts to achieve dramatic smile re-designs. Also, the economics of dentists adding Botox® to their practice is very sound.
Dentists have a good knowledge of facial anatomy and this knowledge can make it easy for them to grasp the skills of aesthetic medicine especially Botox injections. That has been a fair amount of discussion over the years regarding whether or not dentists can administer Botox injections. Most dentists believe that by providing their patients with the service, it would improve the loyalty of the patients, enhance the clinical practice and also increase the monthly income.
The primary purpose the dentists might want to start using Botox® injections would be to treat jaw pain and facial pain. However, it could be possible for them to extend these services to the world of cosmetic medicine. In order to do so, they must be aware of what the current guidelines are and the indications for Botox® injections.
Botox® injections are now primarily used in the management of cosmetic problems. The treatment of fine lines and wrinkles on the face can now be easily done by injecting Botox® strategically in these areas. Sessions can take only a few minutes and that results can be seen fairly soon (sometimes immediately). Patients go into a cosmetic practice looking older and come out looking significantly younger. This is made Botox popular as an anti ageing treatment.
It is this very popularity that is now prompted dentists to take up this practice as well. In order to do so, Botox® courses for dentists are essential and these must cover not just the injection aspect of things but also the ethics, the type of botox injections available, the future management of the patient and method of dealing with complications. The primary purpose of such a detailed course would be to ensure that patients have complete faith in their doctors should anything go wrong. It is therefore of utmost importance that these courses are run by trained individuals who have years of experience in injecting Botox® for cosmetic purposes. By undergoing a course that will arm them with the right skills, dentists can significantly improve their clinical practice and monthly income in a short period.
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 patients are in the dentist’s chair, they are 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. Dentists have 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
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 for patients at your dental office leaving 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.
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.
Dentists 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® injection training for dentists is offered by both private companies and medical associations. The courses offered by established aesthetic associations are highly regarded by both patients and practitioners and are often sought after by dentists these days are looking to add cosmetic injectables to their dental practice.
It appears that there is a growing trend of approving dentists to now inject Botox® for cosmetic purposes. In many states and countries, dentists have typically been approved to inject both fillers and Botox® around the mouth. Some dentists want to also inject Botox® in other areas of the face, like the forehead. Here you want to check with the states Dental Board to ensure it is within your scope of practice to inject above the nose. But we are certainly seeing an increase in dentists taking the IAPAM’s Botox Training, so it certainly appears that those Dental Boards are approving expanded use of Botox® and dermal fillers by dentists.
Botox is a trademark of Allergan Inc.