What is botox jaw reduction?
Botox is injected into the jaw muscle (masseter) to weaken it and causing it to shrink in size. It is a common cosmetic procedure among Asians to create a slimmer jawline and a heart face shape. Therefore, it is also known as botox jaw reduction. There are also a group of patients who perform this procedure for medical reasons. They suffer from teeth grinding (bruxism). Botox relaxes the masseter which is responsible for the teeth grinding, especially at night. After the treatment, such patients reported feeling less tired and more refreshed when they wake up in the morning.
How does jaw reduction work?
Some patients are born with heavy jaw muscles due to genetics or from the habit of night grinding. You can feel the bulk of your masseter by clenching your teeth. If your masseters are strong, the muscle bulk is very easily felt under your palms. Similar to the treatment of wrinkles, Botox relaxes the muscle activity by blocking the neurotransmitters. This is a temporary effect and lasts 3 to 6 months for most patients. However, do note that botox injection will only work if you have heavy jaw muscles. It does not alter your bone structure or reduce a chubby face due to other reasons.
What happens during jaw reduction?
Botox jaw reduction is a very quick procedure. You can come in during lunch time and get the treatment done within 10 minutes. Our doctor will palpate your jaw muscles and locate the injection points (see diagram on left). There is minimal discomfort with the injection, even without numbing cream. After the procedure, you can resume your daily activities with no downtime. The effect of botox injection is apparent in 3 days to a week. If this is your first injection, you may be required to come back for a follow-up visit in about 2 weeks’ time to assess the effect. Otherwise, most patients return for a top up dose at 3-6 months’ interval.
To find out if you are a suitable candidate for this procedure, you can first have an assessment with our doctor. After that, we will recommend your treatment based on our findings and your indicated preferences.
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Frequently Asked Questions
How do I prepare myself for botox jaw reduction?
You do not need to have any special preparation for jaw reduction. We usually inform our patients to come for treatment at least one week before an event. This is to allow time for botox to show its effect and time for your injection marks to heal.
Who is a good candidate for botox jaw reduction?
The ideal candidate for jawline slimming is someone in their 20s to 40s. They need to have strong jaw muscles and their skin should be taut and not show signs of sagginess. This is because a slim jawline is dependent not only on the muscle, but also on the bone as well as the skin.
Can I combine botox jaw reduction with other treatments?
Yes you can. If your skin has started to show sagginess, you can combine with non invasive face lift treatments such as radiofrequency or HIFU Facelift. This will improve your results with botox jaw reduction. On the other hand, if you have a recessed chin due to genetics or ageing, you can combine with chin filler to accentuate your facial shape.
What are the side effects from botox jaw reduction?
Botox injection is a generally safe procedure and side effects are not common. The most common complaint is the sensation of feeling sore after the injection. Some patients may get a small bruise at the injection site. Few may experience difficulty chewing food in the first few days, but it gets better with time. A rare side effect is temporary drooling of saliva. This happens as the botox migrates into an adjacent muscle. Again, this resolves with time.
What should I look out after the procedure?
You should not exercise or drink alcohol for at least one day after injection. Such activities may cause the blood vessels to dilate and result in bruising which can be avoided. You should also avoid heat or massage to the injection sites for up to a week. This is to prevent the spread of botox to an unintended site before absorbed by the muscle.
If you are taking vitamins such as gingko, vitamin E or aspirin, please inform the doctor. These medications thin the blood and may increase bruising risks.
Do I need increasing dosage of botox for subsequent visits?
Yes and no. This depends on your metabolism of the botox. However, it is quite rare for patients to require increasing dosage of botox for jaw reduction over time. We observe that regular patients require lesser dosage as the jaw muscles get less active and shrink in size. On the contrary, if you are a consistent teeth grinder who doesn’t get treated, your jaw muscles may become bigger in size due to over-activity.