How Does BOTOX® Cosmetic Actually Work?

When it comes to med spa procedures, BOTOX Cosmetic is by far one of the most popular nonsurgical options at my Las Vegas practice. It’s used to treat everything from crow’s feet at the outer corners of the eyes to thick bands in the neck; from overactive sweat glands to migraine headaches. It’s been called “the poison that heals” by the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine. It’s also well-tolerated by most people and has few side-effects.

In this blog post, I’ll provide answers to a few of the questions I most commonly receive about the treatment and its results.

What is BOTOX and how does it work?

BOTOX is the brand name for botulinum toxin-A, approved by the United States FDA for cosmetic purposes in 2002. Botulinum toxin works by blocking the chemical signal acetylcholine, which is the main chemical responsible for muscle contraction. Because this chemical signal is blocked, the muscle is temporarily paralyzed and the overlying skin gradually smooths out. This is how BOTOX treats wrinkles. The effects of BOTOX injections generally last 4 to 6 months.

What should I consider before getting BOTOX?

Research your doctor’s credentials. BOTOX therapy can be dangerous if it’s administered incorrectly. You can see my credentials here. Make sure that you pick a doctor who is experienced and knowledgeable about BOTOX injections.

Be upfront with your doctor about any medications and health issues. During your consultation, we will review your medical history, any prior plastic surgery, and daily skin care regimen. Pregnant women are not candidates for BOTOX.

While many men and women choose this treatment for anti-aging purposes, there is no “right” age to start injections. I see patients as young as their late 20s using BOTOX to prevent future wrinkles and negate the need for more intensive rejuvenation procedures in the future.

How soon can I expect to see results?

You can expect to see wrinkle reduction within several days of your BOTOX treatment, and the full effect will be visible within 7 to 10 days. You will have a follow-up appointment 2 weeks after the injections to make sure you’re satisfied with your results.

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