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What is Botox?

Botox injections may be used as part of a treatment plan which may also include lifestyle modifications, braces/splints/walking aides, medications, physical therapy, exercise, diet, and nutritional supplementation.

Therapeutic Botox

Botox injections block certain chemical signals from nerves, mostly signals that cause muscles to contract. The most common use of these injections is to temporarily relax the facial muscles that cause wrinkles in the forehead and around the eyes. Botox injections are also used to treat conditions that affect how the body functions. Examples include:

  • Cervical dystonia. In this painful condition, your neck muscles contract involuntarily, causing your head to twist or turn into an uncomfortable position.

  • Muscle contractures. Some neurological conditions, such as cerebral palsy, can cause your limbs to pull in toward your center. In some cases, these contracted muscles can be relaxed with Botox injections.

  • Hyperhidrosis. In this condition, excessive sweating occurs even when the temperature isn't hot, and you're not exerting yourself.

  • Chronic migraine. If you experience migraines more than 15 days a month, Botox injections may help reduce headache frequency.

What are the
side effects?

Common side effects of treatment with Neurotoxins include discomfort at the injection site, mild swelling, redness, and bruising.

Is there preparation for the treatment?

Individuals should review medical, surgical, medication, and allergy history with a provider prior to treatment. Prepare for your treatment by reading about neurotoxins, schedule your treatment 2 weeks before any special events, wash your skin and remove any makeup, excess oil, and lotions, and relax. Read the pre and post treatment instructions to prepare yourself.

What can I expect during the treatment?

Your provider will first mark the targeted areas on the face or other discussed areas and apply a mild cleansing agent to disinfect the skin. Local anesthesia is not required, but the provider may apply a topical numbing cream for comfort. Neurotoxins are diluted to a very controlled solution and then injected into the muscles or treatment areas with a very thin needle. The injections are almost painless. Patients may feel a slight burning sensation while the solution is being injected but nothing unbearable.


a woman getting injected near collar bones

How long does the treatment take?

The entire process usually takes just 15 to 30 minutes, depending on the treatment area.

What is the recovery time?

Because small amounts of liquid are injected, you may notice some bruising or swelling, which goes away in 24 hours. Otherwise, there is no downtime, and you may return to normal activity after treatment.

a woman getting injected in the underarms

Will the treatment hurt?

There is minimal pain and a mild burning sensation at the injection site; no anesthesia is required.

How long before results are seen?

Most will observe relaxation of the muscle tone by the 3rd day after the injection. The maximal effects will appear around the 2nd week.

How long do the results last?

The results may last up to 3 months or longer depending on the individual and degree of wrinkles. With repeated treatments, the results may tend to last longer.

Are additional treatments needed?

The "effect" lasts from 3 to 5 months and maybe longer in some people. To maintain the effects, the injections must be repeated.

Can this treatment be combined with other procedures?

Patients often combine Neurotoxins with splinting, casting, bracing, physical therapy, and occasionally surgery. Talk to your provider about your goals to set realistic expectations and design a complete treatment plan that may include more than one type of treatment, as well as recommendations on the timing and scheduling of various treatments.

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