When talking about working against the effects of aging, almost everyone has heard the name Botox come up. While it is most notably used for beauty treatments, Botox can also be used for certain medical treatments.
Although its use is relatively widespread, not everyone understands exactly what Botox is or what it does. The aim of this article is to take a close look at Botox and examine what it is, how and why it is used, and its potential drawbacks:
What Is Botox?
Botox is a drug made using the toxin onobotulinumtoxinA, which is produced by a kind of bacteria called Clostridium botulinum. The same toxin is responsible for causing botulism, a kind of food poisoning, and is generally considered very dangerous. However, small amounts of this toxin are used for a number of purposes.
Companies, such as SDBotox, use Botox to help treat wrinkles and generally improve appearance. Cosmetic use for Botox is widely known, although its inner workings are not necessarily understood. Botox helps to temporarily smooth facial wrinkles by weakening or paralyzing muscles and blocking certain nerves. This is why those who have undergone treatment of Botox are often unable to move certain facial muscles.
Botox is also used to assist in the treatment of certain medical conditions, including:
- Cervical dystonia. A terrible condition that causes your neck muscles to contract involuntarily and painfully. These contractions will cause your head to twist into uncomfortable positions.
- Muscle contractions. Similarly to cervical dystonia, other conditions cause your muscles to painfully contract and pull your limbs in towards the center of your body. In certain cases, these symptoms can be eased by administration of Botox.
- Hyperhidrosis. This condition causes patients to sweat excessively, even when there is no normal reason for them to be sweating, such as high temperature or physical exertion.
- Chronic migraines. In cases where a patient experiences migraines particularly often, 15 times or more a month, Botox injections can be used to reduce the frequency of these headaches.
The above is not a complete list of conditions that Botox can be used to treat, but it does serve to give an idea of the versatility of Botox treatments. These kinds of medical procedures are so incredibly versatile because Botox can be used to block certain nerve signals, which allows incredibly specific treatment for chronic issues.
Botox injections, when applied by an experienced professional, are not very dangerous. However, there are a few potential side effects, even when the Botox is properly administered. These symptoms include: Pain, swelling or bruising around the point of injection, flu-like effects, and muscle freezing effects like a crooked smile or cockeyed eyebrows.
Additionally, although it is very unlikely, it is possible for the injection to leak and spread throughout your body. If you notice any muscle weakness, vision problems or issues breathing anywhere between a few hours and a few weeks after receiving a Botox injection you should immediately contact your doctor.