Botox: Vanity, Insanity or so much more?
I love the few wrinkles that I have. They are symbolic of my life so far, the laughter, the hardship, maybe even the tears. But not all people think this way, in fact, some people will go to any length to get rid of those little creases on different parts of their face. From creams and lotions, to knives and injections, people will try anything to look 10 years younger! If that is you, or you have always wondered what the ‘obsession’ with Botox is all about, then this article is for you!
Botox is made from a toxin. You read that right, a toxin, neurotoxin to be exact. The bacterium Clostridium botulinum results in a toxin known as botulinum toxin. Botulinum toxin is considered one of the most poisonous substances known to man, with the estimation that as little as a single gram could kill as many as one million people. The toxin itself, in high concentrations can result in an illness called botulism.
Despite the danger of Botox it has become the most received cosmetic treatment worldwide, with over 4.2 million Americans undergoing treatments annually. This is the result of the effect it has on wrinkles. By causing temporary paralyses of the muscles it prevents contraction of the muscles which causes wrinkles; this is as a result of the neurotransmitter which causes muscle contraction to be ‘blocked’. It has been shown to be a successful cosmetic treatment when dosage and frequency of treatment are accurate, focusing more on the formation of new wrinkles.
Botox’s reputation isn’t all ‘self-centered’ though. As many as 20 different medical conditions are treated with Botox. Treatments that are approved for therapeutic applications include spasms of the eyelid, chronic migraine, hemi facial spasm, post-stroke upper limb spasticity and several other medical conditions. It is also used off label and is in the process of being approved for treatments such as cerebral palsy, allergenic rhinitis, oromandibular dystonia and many more applications.
Botox is administered by diluting the powder in saline and injecting it directly into neuromuscular tissue. It takes 24 to 72 hours for botulinum toxin to take effect, although in some cases may take as long as 5 days.
It is important that Botox is always administered by a qualified, registered medical professional such as a doctor, nurse or other health care provider. Botox should never be used in pregnant or lactating women, or by people who have had a previous allergic reaction to the drug or any of its ingredients. There may also be several side effects associated with Botox, so it is important to only use Botox in the correct environment.
So whether you are hoping to shed a few years, treat an underlying condition or are just curious, maybe take a deeper look into all Botox has to offer!