The Side Effects of Botox
In a quest to prolong the appearance of youth and beauty as long as possible, many women are turning to Botox injections to minimize and even erase facial lines and wrinkles. It’s easier, quicker, cheaper and less invasive than a surgical facelift and it can even be done during lunch hour. The patient can be back at work in time for the regular afternoon session. If you are someone who is looking for a botox specialist near me, here are a few facts about botox treatments that you must know.
Botox is a protein derived from the botulism toxin, the same substance which causes cases of food poisoning, some of which are fatal. When small amounts of Botox are injected under the skin, it paralyzes and relaxes the targeted muscles. These injections can remove forehead lines, crow’s feet, frown lines, neck wrinkles, and vertical “lipstick” creases on the upper lip.
Normal Botox side effects are mild: slight pain, tenderness and bruising around the injection sites. They tend to disappear within a few days. However, treatments must be repeated every four to six months to maintain their effectiveness.
Before impulsively rushing to seek treatment, it must be remembered that Botox is a prescription drug. It must be administered by a skilled physician in an appropriate clinical setting. Like any drug, it can have serious, unexpected side effects.
It is possible to have an allergic reaction to Botox. Because it numbs the muscles, patients may experience drooping eyelids, double vision, or be left with a constant frown, or a continual expression of surprise. Injections in the cheek may cause facial droop. These reactions are uncommon and they will wear off in three to six months.
Those taking antibiotics are at risk of an adverse reaction to Botox. Pregnant or nursing mothers should postpone treatment until the baby is no longer dependent on them for nourishment.
The United States Federal Drug Administration approved Botox for the treatment of neck spasms (cervical dystonia) in 2000. When Botox is injected into the neck for this condition, the most common side effects are difficulty in swallowing, headache, neck pain, and upper respiratory infection.
Complications with Botox treatment usually occur when the doctor administers too much toxin, or when he injects it into the wrong muscle.
Despite potential risks, instances of long-term damage attributed to the use of the botulism toxin are extremely rare. It has been helpful in the management of muscle spasms in cerebral palsy patients, in controlling involuntary facial tics, stuttering, back spasms, excess sweating of the palms of the hands and the underarms and tension headaches.
Botox is made by the Allergan Company, based in Irvine, California. It reported revenues of $2. 4 billion from the sale of the product in 2007. In the same year, 2.4 million women were injected with the substance.
If you are considering a Botox treatment, be sure to follow these guidelines for safety sake:
- Find a qualified doctor who has been well-trained, and is experienced in cosmetic facial procedures.
- Inform yourself about the risks and benefits of the injections. Ask questions. Talk with others who have had them.
- Plan to remain upright for several hours after the procedure is completed.
- Avoid alcohol for several days before and after.
- Choose a medical setting to have the procedure. The surroundings must be clean, the implements sterile and necessary equipment readily available to deal with potential complications.
- Decide on a definite date when you plan to stop the treatments. There is a concern that some women become so addicted to Botox treatments they carry on with them well past a reasonable period of time. Wrinkle-free eighty-year-old risks appearing grotesque. Reflect on the musing of Victor Hugo:
“When grace is joined with wrinkles, it is adorable. There is an unspeakable dawn at a happy old age.”