With over 6 million treatments administered each every single year, Botox comes out as the most popular non-surgical cosmetic treatment. But what is really this Botox treatment and how is it administered?
What is Botox?
The word Botox comes from ‘botulous’, a word that means sausage. Botox is the trade name for a substance that is injected into the skin to inhibit or restrain muscle movement resulting in prevention of development or worsening of wrinkles. In simple terms, it is an injectable wrinkle muscles relaxer.
What is Botox injection used for?
Botox injections act by blocking a number of chemical signals from the nerves. These are mostly signals that cause body muscles to contract. The injections temporarily relax the facial muscles which naturally tend to underlie leading to wrinkles. These include frown lines, crow’s-feet, and forehead furrows. By preventing facial muscles from contracting, the injections also help in slowing the formation of new lines.
Apart from preventing wrinkles, Botox injections are also used to treat various other conditions affecting how the body functions. These conditions include:
- Cervical dystonia – A painful condition whereby the neck muscles contract involuntarily, leading to the whole head turning or twisting into a very uncomfortable position.
- Lazy eye – This is a condition caused by the imbalance in the facial muscles that are responsible for positioning the eye.
- Muscle contractures – This is a condition that causes the limbs to pull in towards the center of the body.
- Hyperhidrosis – This is a condition that causes excessive sweating even when the environment is not hot and you are not exerting yourself.
- Chronic migraine – This is migraines that last for more than 15 days.
- Bladder dysfunction – This is incontinence that is generally caused by an overactive bladder.
- Eye twitching – This is twitching or contracture of the muscles surrounding the eyes.
How is it done?
Since Botox treatment is nonsurgical, it requires very minimal preparation. The process, being minimally invasive, doesn’t involve any incisions or anesthesia. What you only need to do is let your treatment provider know everything concerning your medical history. You may also be required to remove all makeup on your face and cleanse the whole treatment area before the injection. During the procedure, your treatment provider uses a thin needle to administer from 3 to 5 injections of botulinum toxin type A. The whole procedure takes at most 10 minutes.
How long does Botox treatment last?
After the injection, the effects usually start manifesting within just a few hours, lasting for about 4 to 6 months. This means that you will require doing about two to three top-ups in a year to maintain your wrinkle-free look. In case you stop the top-ups, the muscles around the treated area regain their normal functioning, leading to the wrinkles coming back.
How much does the treatment cost?
The average cost of a botulinum toxin injection such as Botox injection is $376. However, the costs may vary depending on factors like the number of injections administered, size of the treatment area, and location of your treatment area.
Are the injections safe?
Botox injections are relatively safe as long as it is done by a qualified medical professional. However, at times some redness or light bruising may develop around the injection area and disappear after a short time.