What Is BOTOX®?
You may encounter the term “Botox” several times in magazines and online blogs, but do you actually know what it is? According to Wikipedia, This beauty treatment is derived from a protein of the neurotoxic nature from the Clostridium botulinum bacterium. The botulinum toxin type A interferes with the nerve activity in your muscles, prompting a significant, albeit temporary, decrease in muscle activity.
Aside from its aesthetic uses, Botox is also a common treatment for cervical dystonia. It can also be used to treat muscle spasms or stiffness in both the upper and lower limbs. Hyperhidrosis or severe underarm sweating can also be treated.
It can also work wonders for certain conditions concerning the eye muscles. Uncontrolled blinking and cases in which the eyes seem to point to different directions are due to nerve disorders, something that can also be treated.
Nerve problems can also lead to an overactive bladder and urine leakage, usually called incontinence. Multiple sclerosis and other spinal cord injuries are two common causes of the aforementioned diseases. Botox can effectively treat these conditions as well. Migraine headaches can also turn to its treatments to put an end to their suffering. However, patients are reminded to not use it for common tension headaches.
And of course, Botox is commonly used to temporarily diminish the appearance of signs of aging including fine lines and wrinkles.
How Botox Works
WebMD states Botox blocks the signals sent by the brain to the nerves of the muscles. The muscles which have been injected couldn’t contract. Because of this, the wrinkles soften and the skin appears smoother.
It is most commonly used to get rid of crow’s feet, forehead lines, and frown lines. It is important to note that wrinkles due to excessive sun exposure and gravity wouldn’t respond well to this treatment.
What To Expect During A Botox Procedure?
It only takes a few minutes to get Los Angeles Botox injections and no anesthesia is required. Using a fine needle, it is injected into certain muscles, causing only a slight discomfort.
In general, it can take one to two weeks to see the full effect of the injections. It is also recommended to avoid alcohol consumption at least 7 days prior to undergoing the procedure. A couple of weeks before the treatment, you must also stop taking anti-inflammatory medications as well as aspiring to minimize bruising.
How Long Do The Effects Last?
In most cases, the effects can last anywhere from 3 to 6 months. After some time, muscle activity returns, which means the lines and wrinkles start appearing once more, calling for another Botox treatment. The good news is that the signs of aging reduce in appearance over time due to muscle shrinkage.
Are There Any Side Effects To Botox Injections?
Bruising is usually the only side effect, but it’s only temporary. In rare instances, the patient might also suffer from headaches which can last from 24 to 48 hours. There are also cases in which patients might develop eyelid drooping. Fortunately, this typically ends after three weeks. Eyelid drooping often occurs when the Botox gets to the area around the eyes, so patients are advised not to rub the affected area at least 12 hours after getting the injection and not to lie down for four hours after the procedure.
Who Are Not Suited To Get Botox?
Not everyone can receive Botox treatment. Those who are pregnant, breastfeeding and suffering from a neurological disease should steer clear of the treatment. As always, it’s best to consult your doctor to ensure that you’re fit to receive it. Also, ask whether it would work on the type of wrinkles you have.
Is Botox Covered By Health Insurance?
Your insurance provider won’t cover the costs of Botox injections when you use it for cosmetic purposes. Be sure to check with your insurance company and discuss the details of your coverage.
Before receiving Botox:
- Be sure that you are not allergic to botulinum toxin and that the area that will be treated doesn’t suffer from any kind of infection.
- If you are dealing with incontinence or other issues with your bladder.
To ensure that you are fit to receive Botox, talk to your doctor if you deal with any of the following:
- Lou Gehrig’s Disease, also known as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
- Problems with swallowing
- Asthma, emphysema or other breathing disorders
- Change in the appearance of your face
- Myasthenia Gravis
- Weakness in your facial muscles (unable to raise eyebrows, drooping eyelids, weak forehead)
- Heart disease
- Lambert-Eaton Syndrome
- Bleeding problems
- If you’ve had surgery or will undergo one in the future, particularly on your face
- If you’ve used a blood thinner recently or received an injectable antibiotic to treat a certain health condition
- If you’ve received Myobloc, Dysport or any botulinum toxin injections in the last 4 months
- If you’ve suffered from any side effects after getting botulinum toxin injections in the past
It hasn’t been confirmed whether Botox causes any harm to an unborn child. Talk to your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to get pregnant while using this treatment.
It has the potential of passing into breast milk, causing harm to a nursing baby. Be sure to talk to your doctor if you are breastfeeding.