Advantages and risks of botulinum toxins
Botulinum Toxin (BOTOX) Risks and benefits

Introduction

For years, Botox has been a popular non-surgical solution to correct lines and wrinkles in the face. Though this is probably the most well known use for Botox, this injectable solution actually has a number of non-cosmetic medical uses. In fact, Botox was first approved by the FDA for use in treating eye conditions such as crossed eyes and uncontrollable blinking in the eye. The injection’s ability to smooth out wrinkles was only discovered by accident as an unintended outcome of other medical treatments. While there are many benefits to receiving Botox injections for a number of medical and cosmetic treatments, there are also some risks that you should be aware of prior to receiving any injections.

Types of Botox

The active ingredient in Botox is botulinum toxin type A, a neurotoxin derived from the bacteria Clostridium botulinum. There are 8 types of botulinum toxin, named type A through H. However, only types A and B are used for medical purposes and sold commercially.

  • Type A

    Type A is 1 of the 8 types of botulinum toxin that are available commercially, and, of the 2 available, it is the most commonly used. It is most well-known as the brand Botox, but there are other brands of botulinum toxin type A available. Other brands that market and distribute this type of the neurotoxin are Dysport and Xeomin. It is important to note that while all these brands contain the active ingredient botulinum toxin type A, the dosage for each solution is not interchangeable. Each brand uses a different unit of measurement.

  • Type B

    Type B is another of the 8 types of botulinum toxic that is available commercially. However, there is only currently 1 brand that distributes type B. Type B provides the same muscle relaxing effect as type A and is marketed and distributed as Myobloc.

Benefits of Cosmetic Injectables

Cosmetic injectables are a long-lasting and effective treatment for achieving aesthetic goals without having to undergo surgery. As treatment sessions are quick and usually require little recovery time, they are also much more convenient while also being less risky than going under the knife. The two most popular types of cosmetic injectables are Botox and dermal fillers, both of which treat different skin issues and have distinct benefits.

Benefits of Botox treatments

With Botox injections, you will be able to soften the appearance of lines and wrinkles that contribute to an aged look to the skin and face. They work on dynamic wrinkles, which are the lines that form in the face when the face is in motion—for instance, when we smile or frown or make any other facial expressions. Botox treatments are also long lasting, with noticeable effects for 3 to 6 months.

Great for around the eyes

Botox injections are particularly effective on the wrinkles in the upper half of the face. This includes glabellar lines (the wrinkles vertical lines that appear between the eyebrows when we frown), crow’s feet (the lines that appear outward from the eyes when we smile), and forehead lines (the horizontal lines that appear during expressions of surprise).

Benefits of Botox at a young age

Botox is becoming an increasingly popular treatment for younger patients, as it is very good at preventing wrinkles once they first start appearing. When the underlying muscles that cause wrinkles to appear are unable to contract, those wrinkles quite simply don’t appear. Many doctors see patients as young as 25 to start preventative Botox injections.

What makes it best

With quick, minimally invasive treatment sessions that last for months, Botox has many advantages over other anti-aging procedures. Not only do Botox injections lessen the appearance of lines and wrinkles, they also prevent wrinkles from getting worse or from forming.

Risks of Botox

While the formation that makes up Botox is incredibly purified and is therefore very safe, there are still some risks associated with Botox injections.

  1. Health hazards – Though very rare, it is possible for the solution to spread in the body and affect other areas other than those that were directly injected. If the patient experiences difficulty swallowing, speaking, or breathing, this could mean the muscle relaxing effects have spread to important organs, and immediate medical attention should be sought
  2. Injections risks – As with any injection, there is a risk of infection. There may also be some mild side effects such as pain at injection site and swelling. Additionally, injection into the blood vessels can be very dangerous. Finding a doctor experienced in administering Botox injections can reduce injection risks.
  3. Pregnancy risks – Botox has not been tested for safety in people who are pregnant or breastfeeding, and so patients in this conditions should not receive injections.
  4. Risks of Botox in forehead – Some patients who receive Botox in the forehead may experience headaches, though only temporarily. This is fairly rare, and the biggest risk in getting injections in the forehead would be forehead sagging, though this can be avoided by receiving injections from an expert.
  5. Risks of Botox for wrinkles – General risks for Botox injections may include pain or swelling at injection site, headache or flu-like symptoms, eye dryness, droopy eyelids, and drooling.
  6. Risks of Botox for migraines – When used for the treatment of migraines, Botox may cause general muscle weakness, problems with vision, or dizziness. This could occur within hours or weeks of injection.
  7. Are there any long-term risks? Some of the side effects may not appear until a week or two after the injection, and so patients must be aware of this. However, the only risk of long-term use of Botox is that it may become less effective after continued use.

These risks can be avoided by seeing a certified medical practitioner.

Are there any risks of FDA-approved Botox?

All of the aforementioned risks apply to FDA-approved Botox. Botox and other similar brands have been used and are trusted by doctors around the world.

 

Conclusion

Though there are some risks associated with Botox injections, this is a trusted medical procedure that has been performed for decades with very few reported serious adverse effects. If you’re looking to slow the signs of aging within the skin and minimize the appearance of lines and wrinkles, Botox injections could be right for you.

More Information

What is Botox

Botox for Hair: Benefits and Risks


Disclaimer: These articles, and any views and opinions expressed, are not endorsed by Raskel Medical. The articles are strictly for informational purposes and should not be considered medical advice. Raskel Medical does not check or edit the content of these articles for medical accuracy. Contact your medical practitioner for any medical advice needed.