Botox is one of the newer forms of cosmetic surgery, which is practiced in today’s society. Cosmetic botox is relatively new compared to other facial cosmetic surgeries such as a facelift, eyelid surgery, chin surgery, nasal reconstruction and lip enhancement. Unlike these procedures, botox is minimally invasive and non surgical. Cosmetic botox is a relatively short procedure with no recovery time. More and more people are turning to botox because it has quick results, which last a decent amount of time. So what is botox and why has it become the most popular non-surgical cosmetic procedure preformed by plastic surgeons?
Botox is a protein produced by the bacteria OnabotulinumtoxinA. It is has several types and cosmetic botox is a diluted form of botulism known as type A. Originally botox was used for cervical dystonia, strabismus, blepharospasm, upper limb spasticity, controlling severe underarm sweating, and headache prevention. During the use of botox on other facial problems, it was noted that botox helped to smooth fine lines and wrinkles. In 1989, Dr. Richard Clark a plastic surgeon documented botoxes effects. By 2002, the FDA approved botox type A to temporarily improve the appearance of frown lines and wrinkles on the face. Since then cosmetic botox has become a growing market not only for the famous, but also for all.
Anti-aging is a huge market and botox has become one of the leading possibilities for men and women who are trying to look younger. Cosmetic botox treats wrinkles that are caused by age, stress, worry or environmental factors. The muscles of the face make uncontrollable movements such as tightening and contracting. These muscle movements create frown lines, crow’s feet, forehead creases and neckbands. Botox is a neuromuscular toxin, which blocks the nerve signals thereby paralyzing or weakening the muscles from creating wrinkles. Cosmetic botox is quick and effective at smoothing frown lines on the forehead, between the eyes, and at the base of the nose. Within a few days the wrinkles disappear for a more youthful, smoother looking skin.
Cosmetic botox has been proven safe due to the highly diluted form of the toxin used. Additionally, botox injections must be prescribed and administered by a doctor, most often a plastic surgeon or dermatologist. Results last anywhere from 3-8 months and refills can be injected once effects disappear. There are some minor and temporary side effects to botox such as bruising, redness, swelling, and allergic reaction. More intense side effects include paralysis of the wrong muscle group, inappropriate facial expressions such as drooping eyelids, double vision, uneven smile, and the loss of ability to close your eyes, headaches, dysphagia, flu-like syndromes, blurred vision, dry mouth, and fatigue. These side effects are temporary and will wear off in up to six weeks. Botox is safe for adults, however women who are pregnant, people with neurological disorders, people taking certain medications or antibiotics, and children under 18 years of age are should not receive botox injections.
Remember that botox is only a temporary fix to diminish fine lines and wrinkles on the face. Although it is quick, effective and non-surgical it cannot permanently reverse the signs of aging. Always, talk to your doctor about questions or concerns you may have in regards to botox procedures.