Masseter hypertrophy (or enlargement) is a big deal.
It has both implications for well-being and for aesthetic beauty. The masseter muscle brings the jaw together for chewing and relative to its size is the strongest muscle in the body. Like any muscle that isused excessively it then expands in size (think about working out at the gym). Patients who frequently chew gum, clinch or grind their teeth are at risk for masseter enlargement. That could also lead to temporomandibular joint (TMJ) pain and/or dislocation. Even at rest, this large muscle can cause a face to be shaped either round or square along the jaw line. It is interesting that the amount of Botox required to relax this muscle and decrease its size is minimal. Unlike other thin muscles in the face which require treatment every 3 to 4 months for continued relaxation, this muscle tends to respond long-term after only two or three treatments 4 to 6 months apart. It is possible that as we weaken this muscle we train patients not to clinch or grind their teeth, and thereby reverse the self induced condition. This can result in an aesthetic improvement or relief of pain. Patients tolerate the procedure well, which is performed by our skilled injectors. Typically we will see patients back after 2 weeks and they already see improvement in that area of concern.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is it painful?
No. If there is any discomfort, it is minimal.
How soon will I see results?
Patients typically start seeing improvements within 2 weeks.
How often will I need to be treated?
This muscle tends to respond long-term after only two or three treatments 4 to 6 months apart.