Botox® Cosmetic has an unusual and well-traveled history before reaching its place as the most popular aesthetic procedure requested today. Originally developed to stop the unwanted movement of spasming eye muscles, scientists noticed that expression lines smoothed out, eliminating wrinkles. And with that, a phenomenon was born.
At Bayview General Medicine, we offer Botox and other neuromodulator treatments based on the botulinum A toxin. While every treatment is temporary, effects last as long as six months for some patients, after which time the previous injection is completely gone, and you’re ready for further treatment.
Are Botox treatments safe?
It’s a reasonable question. After all, the active ingredient in Botox derives from one of the most toxic bacterial substances known in nature, the bacteria that causes botulism food poisoning. Botulinum type A affects the chemistry of muscles, blocking the mechanism that makes muscles contract.
The synthetic version used for Botox is highly purified and, more importantly, highly diluted. This dilution is the key to Botox as a therapeutic treatment. Each Botox injection has such a tiny amount of active type A that it can only block muscle contractions in a small area around the injection site. Botox injections have been subject to much research, it meets medical control studies, and the United States Food and Drug Administration approves its use as a cosmetic treatment.
How a single Botox treatment works
Injections involve a fine needle, so they’re usually well tolerated. We can use a numbing cream or other product as extra pain protection if you need it.
You’ll notice activity in the first few days after the Botox injection. Full effects take about a week to emerge. While a single Botox injection can last as long as six months, generally, the average is three or four months. Many patients choose regular injections on a three-month cycle to maintain results without fading between sessions.
Repeated Botox treatments
Studies on the long-term use of Botox for cosmetic purposes are limited. Most studies on multiple injections involve therapeutic, not cosmetic, uses. Regardless of the research’s purpose, most revealed that the adverse effects of any Botox injection are minor. Common issues include:
- Blurry vision
- Difficulty speaking, chewing, or swallowing
- Drooping eyelid
- Edema (fluid retention)
- General weakness
- Heart palpitations
- Weakness in the neck
Most of these effects are temporary and will correct themselves once Botox clears your system.
There’s no strong evidence that repeated use of Botox has a cumulative effect, but it’s important to note that this is not a well-studied topic yet, even though it is one of its most tested products.
Learn more in consultation with the Botox specialists at Bayview General Medicine. We’re up to date on the latest Botox research, so we can advise you based on the latest news. Book your visit by phone or online today.