Botox Redefined: Botox is a variation of botulinum toxin, a popular non-surgical injection that temporarily reduces facial lines and wrinkles for up to four months. Botox works well for treating those muscles that are repeatedly over-contracted during facial expressions such as frowning or squinting. Treating frown lines, forehead creases, vertical lines between the eyebrows, or crow’s feet near the eyes, can give you a relaxed and rested appearance within a matter of days. The toxin blocks the nerve impulses, temporarily relaxing the muscles that cause wrinkles while giving the skin a smoother, more refreshed appearance. Studies have also suggested that botulinum toxin injections are effective in relieving migraine headaches, excessive sweating and muscle spasms in the neck and eyes.
Confident Impressions: We’re all familiar with the adage as it relates the importance of first impressions. It’s human nature to want to make a positive impression on those we interact with daily (whether it a first introduction or an existing/ongoing relationship). How we feel about ourselves plays a large role in the interaction and engagement with others. The confidence instilled within when one is happy about their physical representation helps exude an intangible confidence as a result. The empowerment of our patients when they see a reflection that makes them feel good is priceless. In truth, it’s about making our patients feel beautiful more than it is about making them look beautiful. From there, the rest of the “beauty process” takes care of itself. And that, quite simply, is the power of what we do as your personal, around-the-clock, bodyguards.
Combating Depression: A common complaint about wrinkle-masking Botox is that recipients have difficulty displaying emotions on their faces. That side effect might be a good thing, however, for people with treatment-resistant depression.
In the first randomized, controlled study on the effect of botulinum toxin—known commercially as Botox—on depression, researchers investigated whether it might aid patients with major depressive disorder who had not responded to antidepressant medications. Participants in the treatment group were given a single dose (consisting of five injections) of botulinum toxin in the area of the face between and just above the eyebrows, whereas the control group was given placebo injections. Depressive symptoms in the treatment group decreased 47 percent after six weeks, an improvement that remained through the 16-week study period. The placebo group had a 9 percent reduction in symptoms. The findings appeared in May in the Journal of Psychiatric Research.
Study author M. Axel Wollmer, a psychiatrist at the University of Basel in Switzerland, believes the treatment “interrupts feedback from the facial musculature to the brain, which may be involved in the development and maintenance of negative emotions.” Past studies have shown that Botox impairs people’s ability to identify others’ feelings, and the new finding adds more evidence: the muscles of the face are instrumental for identifying and experiencing emotions, not just communicating them.
Interested in learning more about what Botox can do for you? Schedule a consult at (502) 584-1109. Dr. O’Daniel and his nurse injector administer Botox injections in the office. Injections can be repeated every three to four months to maintain results. Recovery is immediate, and improvement is usually visible within 2-10 days.
*Sources: T. Gerald O’Daniel MD, FACS, Botox Cosmetic, and Scientific American.