"Wrinkles Should Merely Indicate Where Smiles Have Been"
Botox is a drug made from a toxin produced by a bacterium called Clostridium Botulinum. It is very commonly used now as an antiwrinkle treatment. Some people are using it more frequently than going to the hairdresser. In 2009 1.5 milllion injections of Botox or similar drugs were used on Australians. There is a perception that this is safe but is it?
Botulinum toxin is one of the most powerful neurotoxins and is more powerful than cyanide. It is the same toxin that can cause a life threatening food poisoning known as Botulism.
Neurotoxins are substances that effect our nervous system. The toxins are absorbed by nerve endings and travel inside the neuron to the cell body. In doing this they disrupt vital functions of a nerve cell, such as transport of nutrients, mitochondrial respiration and proper DNA (gene) expression. This induces DNA damage which than sets off a response in the DNA to try and repair this damage. Cells that fail to repair die. In brief Botox does not bring out the best in our gene potential. The body constantly tries to eliminate any neurotoxins like Botox via the liver, kidney, skin and lungs.
Botox blocks the neurotranmittors (a chemical messenger) known as acetylcholine from nerve cells. This is an important neurotransmittor for transmitting nerve impulses to muscle cells, causing them to contract. This can cause weakening or paralysis of muscles. Common side effects can be fatigue, depression, insomnia, memory loss and blunting of senses.
The reason it is effective for wrinkles is that this injection weakens and paralyses some of the facial muscles that pull on your skin and cause wrinkles and in doing so flattens the skin out. So within 2-7 days after an injection the lines or wrinkles in the area injected disappear. The effect can last 2-4months.
Doctors use botox injections medicinally for severe underarm sweating, severe neck and shoulder contractions, uncontrollable blinking, fissures, chronic isolated pain and misaligned eyes.
In a new study rats were injected with Botox into the tibulus muscle of the leg. Four days later not only was the injected muscle paralysed but the opposite leg also showed signs of decreased twitch response by electrical stimulus. Sixteen days later their was still an effect in the opposite muscle which shows that botox does affect muscles distant to the original injection.
Another thought worth considering when choosing Botox is how it will effect your expression. If your face is paralysed then natural expressions of surprise , enjoyment, sadness, caring, concern to name a few are no longer possible. For some this can effect your career but it is also worth considering how having no expression is perceieved by your loved ones and in fact any relationship - be that professionally or personally.
When it comes to making decisions concerning your health let it be an educated decision and this includes the decision to use Botox. It is your body and your future.
Please feel free to discuss any health decisions openly with us in your consultation.