Botox – What is it and How Does it Work

Statistics indicate that back in the year 2000, there were some eight hundred thousand American folks, who visited one of the many cosmetic surgery clinics across the country, eager to receive a Botox injection. This miraculous treatment promised to smooth their wrinkles and help them look as young as they felt. By 2007, that number had mushroomed to just under three million folks as these wrinkle treatments gained more popularity and more celebrity endorsements.

The jury is still out as to whether it is solely down to vanity or not but one thing is for sure, and that is these treatments are undoubtedly helping those who feel crippled by the effects of aging.

Botulinum Toxin Type A, otherwise known as Botox, was approved by the FDA in 1990 for use in treating eye muscle spasms, severe underarm sweating, migraine headaches, the severe neck and shoulder muscle contractions of Cervical Dystonia, uncontrollable blinking known as Blepharospasm, or misaligned eyes (Strabismus).

How Long Does Botox Last

This drug, made from the toxin produced by the Clostridium Botulinum bacteria, is comprised of small, non-lethal doses and works by temporarily paralyzing certain muscles and blocking certain nerves. The effects generally last for three to four months, when another injection is required to sustain treatment. One surprising yet welcome side effect of these various outpatient procedures was the fact that lines and wrinkles seem to magically disappear.

For those folks that have little time or just cannot be bothered to submit themselves for cosmetic surgery procedures and the resulting recovery time involved, Botox treatments can be carried out within half an hour, which makes them an attractive proposition.

Botox Risks and  Side Effects

Botox face treatment prices range in price up to one thousand dollars per treatment, although an average cost is under four hundred dollars. While this sounds too good to be true, there are some botox side effects that you should be aware of.

For instance, some patients report pain at the injection site, flu-like symptoms, headaches and nauseous stomachs. A poor Botox job or adverse reaction can cause temporary drooping of the eyelids, dry mouth, slurred speech, muscle weakness and difficulty swallowing.

While rare, there have been sixteen reported deaths and nearly ninety hospitalizations from complications of this treatment, according to Ralph Nader’s watchdog group Public Citizen.

Botox Alternative

Mesotherapy is the newest of the Botox alternatives but it is gaining a lot of attention.

“For problems like spot fat reduction, treating pigmentation problems, collagenation of skin or skin rejuvenation, Mesotherapy is an ideal treatment,” says cosmetologist Dr. Anup Dhir.

He adds that he has used Mesotherapy to remove chin fat, reduce eye bags or puffy faces, slim down arms and get rid of love handles.

Mesotherapy differs from Botox in that it is a blend of homeopathic medications, plant extracts, vitamins and other ingredients that target fat cells, rather than a derivative of the Botulin toxin.

Critics argue that there is no data, no science and no information that proves this works. In addition, they suggest that no one says exactly what they put into the syringe.

Regardless of which procedure is chosen, our quest for eternal youth has turned into big business, for better or for worse.

Updated: 08/05/2016 — 02:00
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