Home Care for your Splint
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.
With your fingertips, pull up or down on the back outside edges of the splint, just under the plastic layer.
To Place in Your Mouth
Place the splint over your teeth in the correct alignment and push into place with your thumbs or forefingers.
Remove the splint when brushing your teeth and brush it with the brush provided. Be sure to support the splint evenly while brushing. For removal of odor and stains, soak the splint in any of the following solutions:
- Ã‚Â½ vinegar and Ã‚Â½ cool tap water for 20-30 minutes.
- 2 tablespoons of baking soda in Ã‚Â½ cup tap water for 20-30 minutes.
- Cool tap water and a denture cleaning solution like Polident or Efferdent for 15 minutes.
Note: Heat will cause your splint to warp. Therefore, do not use hot water when cleaning the splint. If the water is too hot for your fingers, it is too hot for your splint. Do not leave your splint in a car or next to a heater. However, as long as your splint is in position in your mouth, hot food or drink will not damage it.
1. You must wear your splint all the time and remove it only to brush your teeth (unless told otherwise). It is especially important to wear your splint when you are concentrating on something such as driving, exercising, paperwork, etc. These times are when you are most likely to subconsciously grind your teeth.
2. At all times try to condition yourself to keep your teeth slightly apart, even when wearing the splint. Your teeth should only touch when you swallow or eat. Separating the teeth will help your muscles to relax and reduce the stress on the jaw joints.
3. In the beginning, you may find that you have more saliva in your mouth. This is your mouth getting used to having something in it all the time. After awhile, this should return to normal.
4. You probably will have sore teeth, a sore tongue and some muscle pain after getting your splint. This is only the muscles and your teeth becoming accustomed to the splint. These symptoms should subside in a few days.
5. The best way to learn to speak with your splint is to start right away enunciating more dramatically and reading or singing aloud to practice. It may take a few days to become accustomed to speaking with it. Remember, you sound worse to yourself than you do to others.
6. You should brush after every meal. Since your teeth and gums are covered by the splint, your tongue is unable to remove any food particles and we do not want you to develop cavities or gum problems. When you brush your teeth, also take the time to clean your appliance.
7. Be careful with your splint. Keep your splint away from dogs!!! Dogs love to chew on splints. Try not to drop your splint as it may break. Never wrap your splint in a paper napkin or tissue and lay it on the table. Someone may throw it away. Don't put it in your pocket because you might break it. Avoid flipping the splint with your tongue as that can damage your splint.
If you have any additional questions, please feel free to call us. We want this to be as pleasant an experience for you as possible and are anxious to assist you in adjusting to this therapy.