What You Need To Know About Botox Injections

    What You Need To Know About Botox Injections

    The first thing that comes to mind when we hear Botox is usually the injection that eliminates wrinkles. But, Botox — and other botulinum injections — is not just a cosmetic procedure. People who have certain medical conditions can also benefit from it. Here’s what you need to know about botulinum injections.

    How Do Botulinum Injections Work?

    Have you ever heard about botulism? It’s a rare and life-threatening condition that causes muscle weakness, paralysis, or even death. It’s caused by a toxin produced by the bacteria, Clostridium botulinum.

    Botox, a brand of botulinum injections, is made from the same toxin that causes botulism, onobotulinumtoxinA. But don’t worry, when administered correctly in small amounts by a healthcare professional, Botox injections are generally safe.

    Who Needs Botox Injections?

    Botox injections are completely optional for people who want it for cosmetic reasons.

    However, a doctor may recommend the injections for those with

    They might also suggest Botox to patients with problems associated with muscle movements, such as lazy eye, cervical dystonia, and urinary incontinence caused by an overactive bladder.

    As a general rule, doctors do not recommend Botox injections to pregnant and breastfeeding women. But those with an allergy to cow’s milk protein also shouldn’t receive botulinum injections.

    Other contraindications to this procedure include:

    • Skin infections
    • Neuromuscular conditions, such as myasthenia gravis
    • Taking certain medications (e.g. muscle relaxants)
    • Being unwell in any way

    How Are Botulinum Injections Performed?

    At a glance, Botox looks like a very simple procedure that only takes about 15 minutes. However, it is critical that an expert performs it because it requires precision.

    You see, there are 43 facial muscles. The doctor must also know exactly where to inject the small amount of toxin so that the procedure gives the optimum result.

    The number of injections you need depends on the extent of your wrinkles and your facial features. The lines at the outer side of the eyes (crow’s feet) usually need 2 to 3 injections. Meanwhile, the deeper furrows above the eyebrows might need about 5.

    What Happens After the Procedure?

    Botox injections have no recovery time. After the injections, you may proceed with your usual activities.

    However, please refrain from rubbing or massaging the injection site. Doing so might spread the toxin and cause temporary drooping, or facial paralysis.

    Note that you won’t be able to see the effects right away. The toxin needs a couple of days to take effect, and significant improvement may only be noticeable after a couple of weeks.

    Are There Any Risks?

    While botulinum injections are generally safe when administered by a trained healthcare professional, the possibility of side effects and complications is still there.

    Botox may result in:

    • Pain, bruising, or swelling of the injection site
    • Flu-like symptoms
    • Headache
    • Eye dryness
    • Excessive tearing
    • Droopy eyes
    • Crooked smile
    • Drooling

    Rarely, the toxin may also spread to the body. Contact your doctor if you develop the following symptoms:

    • Vision problems
    • Muscle weakness
    • Breathing problems
    • Loss of bladder control
    • Trouble speaking or swallowing

    What Should You Consider If You Want To Have Botox Injections?

    After ascertaining that you don’t have any contraindications to the procedure, it would help to consider the following:

    • The effects of Botox injections are temporary. They last from a few months to a year. Expect to have maintenance injections or touch-ups every 3 to 6 months.
    • The price depends on the brand of botulinum injections. Some clinics offer Botox treatment for P20,000.
    • Senior citizens may have discounts, but Botox and other cosmetic procedures are typically not covered by insurance.

    If you have any doubts or concerns, consult your doctor.

    Key Takeaways

    Botox, a brand of botulinum injection, is a common cosmetic procedure that improves the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. However, it’s not for everyone. If you wish to have botulinum injections, consult your doctor for guidance.

    Learn more about Skin Care and Cleansing here.

    Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

    Sources

    Botox injections, https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/cosmetic-procedures/botox-injections/, Accessed November 5, 2021

    Botox injections, https://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/botox/about/pac-20384658, Accessed November 5, 2021

    Botulinum Toxin Injection for Facial Wrinkles, https://www.aafp.org/afp/2014/0801/p168.html, Accessed November 5, 2021

    Botulinum Toxin Injections, https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/treatments/8312-botulinum-toxin-injections, Accessed November 5, 2021

    What should I expect during my recovery after botulinum toxin injections?
    , https://www.plasticsurgery.org/cosmetic-procedures/botulinum-toxin/recovery, Accessed November 5, 2021

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    Written by Lorraine Bunag, R.N. Updated Aug 16
    Medically reviewed by Martha Juco, MD