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“Mama, Why do you have your angry look on?” Botox, the anti-aging serum of the new millennium by Malena Amato MD FACS

Don’t you love it when your toddler tells you the brutal truth? The ‘mom furrow’ our family likes to call it, smack in the middle of my eyebrows carries the weight of worries and to-do lists for all to see. Or, are you at the age when you look in the mirror, and with great horror, you see your first wrinkle? No longer invincible to time, are you? Botox is a wonderful treatment that can serve as both a preventative to deepening of wrinkles or a reduction in wrinkles with no downtime. It has become the anti-aging serum of the new millennium.

Botox (Botulinum Toxin type A) has been approved since 1989 to treat a variety of medical conditions involving muscular spasm or twitches. It was originally used on humans in the 1970’s by ophthalmologists for the treatment of crossed eyes. Ophthalmologists to treat a disabling eyelid condition called blepharospasm as well as other eyelid and eye conditions have also used botulinum toxin. Since then, Botox has been used by physicians to treat patients with crippling muscle spasms, sweating under the armpits, and is being considered for FDA approval against migraines and back spasms. In addition to Botox, now many types of effective neuromodulators are now on the market worldwide, including Botox, Xeomin, Dysport and Myobloc with slight variations in efficacy.

Botulinum toxin is a byproduct of a bacteria called Clostridium botulinum, and acts by blocking acetylcholine, a chemical that transmits nerve signals to muscles to move. For therapeutic use, the toxin is purified and largely diluted. Though some people are hesitant to receive a “poison” toxin, lethal doses are hundreds of thousands of units greater than a typical cosmetic injection, which contains 20 units. For the past 2 decades, doctors have safely used Botox for the treatment of facial wrinkles.

Botox treatment for wrinkles is a relatively painless procedure as small amounts are injected with a small needle under the skin into the muscles controlling facial expression. Movement of these facial muscles are responsible for “dynamic” wrinkles, causing frown lines between the eyebrows, horizontal wrinkles across the forehead and crow’s feet at the corners of the eye. Treatment of these “dynamic” wrinkles with Botox has also had a benefit to reduce or soften static lines (lines present at rest) as well. The effects of Botox usually last 3-4 months occasionally up to 6 months.

The majority of people using Botox are women, but use in men is a growing market. Though infrequent, there are few side effects of Botox, including drooping of the eyelids or eyebrows, slight headache, hoarseness, or drooping of the side of the lip. It is questioned whether frequent use of Botox builds up antibodies and thus becomes less effective. However, other types of botulinum toxin are now available. Botox is a wonderful treatment to transform your “angry mom” appearance to a more relaxed, refreshed look, even when you are not feeling that way!

Call now for your Botox treatment today with Dr. Amato! 512-501-1010.