Square Face – Masseteric Hypertrophy
Historically, the shape for beauty and balance has been the triangle. This also holds true for the shape of the face, where a diamond or heart-shaped face has been found more attractive than a square looking face.
What is Square Face?
Masseteric hypertrophy is sometimes called “square face.” It is the enlargement of the masseter muscles at the angle of the jaws that gives you a more square-looking face or jaw. The masseter is one of the strongest muscles in the human body. It is used every single day for speaking and chewing food. When it becomes enlarged, hypertrophic, from excessive use, it can create an appearance that is sometimes considered unattractive, especially among women who perceive it makes them look too masculine.
An enlarged mandible, which is congenital, can also give an appearance labeled as “square face” but is different from masseteric hypertrophy and does not respond to the same treatments. In the past, the solution for a square face involved surgical reduction of the jaw bones or jaw sculpting. This is traumatic and carries a significant risk of injury to the salivary glands or facial nerves. Recovery time is prolonged, with swelling and discomfort that makes the procedure unattractive. This procedure is available under special circumstances and requires a consultation with Dr. Kun Z. Kim.
What Causes Square Face?
Masseteric hypertrophy can develop from:
- Habitual chewing such as gums or nuts
- Nocturnal teeth grinding
Treatment for Square Face
The most effective, non-invasive and non-surgical approach has been discovered to treat Masseteric Hypertrophy by using an injectable such as BOTOX® Cosmetic or Xeomin®.
BOTOX® and/or Xeomin® causes the injected masseteric muscles to go to rest, temporarily reducing the size of the muscles and narrowing the jaw line. Over time, the muscles will atrophy and treatments may become less frequent and in some cases unnecessary. Patients will lose the hard contour on the sides and notice more prominent cheekbones without the need for surgery. The results last up to 4 months or longer depending upon the number of treatments.
If you have more questions regarding masseteric hypertrophy and want reduce the appearance of your square face, Georgia cosmetic surgeon Dr. Kim at Kim Facial Plastic Surgery would be delighted to discuss treatment options. Please contact us to schedule a personal consultation at (770) 458-4255.