Botox (or botulinum toxin type A) is an extremely important medication for many reasons. Most people who hear the word Botox think of using it for vanity purposes, such as getting rid of wrinkles, it is actually a drug widely distributed for many other reasons.
Botox has multiple FDA approvals, including treatment of glabel (frown) lines, migraine headaches, cervical dystonia (muscle pain and involuntary muscle contraction in the neck), hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating), spasticity of the upper extremities (muscle contraction and pain in the upper extremities), Blepharospasm (involuntary contractions of the eyes) and Strabismus (crossed eyes). Botox has also been studied for pain relief and depression.
Botox before and after pictures are a great way to see the effects of Botox on wrinkles and fine lines of the face.
One of the most important FDA approvals for Botox is the treatment of expression lines. Botox has been approved to address the expression lines since 2002. Now it has three competitors in this market, Dysport, Xeomin and Jeuveau. There are more medications planned in the near future to compete with Botox. Although most consumers think that Botox is a “vain” medication, using it for the forehead can help reduce headaches and help the patient with depression. Many of our patients tell us that their friends and family think they are angry because their expression lines are always present when they think or even speak. But when Botox is injected, these muscles relax and do not look angry. For this reason, Botox can help with self-esteem, relationships and even depression.
Many consumers believe that Botox paralyzes the muscles in which it is injected. While Botox interrupts the ability of the muscle to contract, the muscles are not paralyzed in the traditional sense of the word. This is because Botox generally lasts between 3 and 6 months. The drug covers the receptors that are responsible for muscle contraction so that they cannot speak. The body eventually develops new receptors and the muscle wakes up. This usually takes between 3 and 6 months, depending on the type of procedure and the dose used.
A related and important use for Botox is the treatment of migraines. Botox is approved by the FDA for the treatment of migraine headaches and has been since 2010. In the same way that Botox relaxes the muscles in the area between the eyes (the 11 lines or lines of the frown), also relax the muscles of the forehead, the ears above and even at the back of the head to decrease the effects of migraines. In fact, many of our patients who use cosmetic Botox (wrinkles) also get relief from their migraine headaches. It is a two-for-one situation: get rid of wrinkles and get rid of headaches. For patients struggling with migraine headaches, Botox is an extremely important medication and is covered by insurance.
Cervical dystonia is a problematic condition that affects the neck muscles. It often causes the head to turn to the side. The good news is the pain of the condition and also the problem that the head turns to the side can be solved with botulinum toxin type A (Botox). For those who have this painful condition, medication is extremely important to relieve their pain.