Your Rights as a Patient
The same BOTOX that smooths facial wrinkles also prevents the muscle contractions that can trigger migraines.
BOTOX, highly diluted botulinium toxin, works to prevent migraine by blocking the release of a chemical in muscle cells that transmits the signal to contract to muscle fibers. Research into using BOTOX to treat migraines began after patients receiving it for other conditions reported improvement in their migraine symptoms. In 2010, after years of research and collecting clinical data, the FDA approved BOTOX for treating chronic migraines.
BOTOX is administered about every three months, relaxing the surrounding muscles so that they won’t compress the nerve and trigger a migraine. It is a potent drug, and we only recommend using it if other preventative treatment options haven’t helped you. It is generally only administered to patients who have at least 14 headaches a month, or don’t respond to other treatments.
You can now decrease teeth grinding (Bruxism) with BOTOX. Bite splints worn at night can protect the teeth and TM joints from the intensity of grinding at night. However, BOTOX injection into specific muscles has been shown to decrease the intensity itself, thus reducing pain.
TRIGGER POINT TREATMENT
Trigger points are focal, hyperirritable spots located in a taut band of skeletal muscle. These knots produce pain locally and in a referred pattern. Acute trauma or repetitive microtrauma may lead to the development of stress on muscle fibers and the formation of trigger points. Trigger points may lead to face, neck and shoulder pain, tension headache, tinnitus, and temporomandibular joint pain. Palpation of the trigger point will elicit pain directly over the affected area and/or cause radiation of pain toward a zone of reference and a local twitch response. Trigger point injections using a combination of Botox and local anesthetic have been shown to be one of the most effective treatment modalities to inactivate trigger points and provide prompt relief of symptoms.
- You have a right to see the dentist every time you receive dental treatment.
- You have a right to ask about treatment alternatives and be told, in language you can understand, the advantages and disadvantages of each.
- You have a right to know the education and training of your dentist and the dental team.
- You have a right to know in advance the type and expected cost of treatment.
- You have a right to expect dental team members to use appropriate infection and sterilization controls.
- You have a right to ask your dentist to explain all the treatment options regardless of coverage or cost.
- You have a right to be treated in a professional and ethical manner by your dentist and dental team.
- You should have a right to schedule an appointment with the dentist of your choice.
American Dental Association Leads Fight for Patient Rights
The American Dental Association has supported legislation that will set a few basic rules to promote high-quality care and protect patients in an increasingly bottom line-driven health care system.
ADA member dentists have been instrumental in moving the patients' rights issue into the national spotlight. The nation appears closer than ever to finally seeing a comprehensive patients' bill of rights passed into law.
While Congress debates various versions of patient rights legislation, the insurance and managed care industries have long supported legislation that would fail to protect all privately insured Americans against unfair delays and denials of coverage by their health plans, according to the ADA. Some ill-fated bills left out critical protections, such as guaranteeing people the option of choosing their own doctors or creating mechanisms to address patients' grievances against health plans. One proposal even omitted freestanding dental plans, which could have left more than 120 million dental patients without these vital protections.
The American Dental Association continues to lobby for the enactment of bipartisan legislation to help ensure that health plans treat patients fairly and do not discriminate against dentists. Here are some of the key issues identified by the ADA:
- Coverage for freestanding dental plans, which account for the vast majority of Americans who have dental coverage.
- Patient choice, by guaranteeing access to at least one plan with a point-of-service option that allows patients the opportunity to choose their own doctors.