In the fight to look younger, Botox injections are, arguably, the most well-known and popular cosmetic treatment. It works by stopping the muscles, beneath lines and wrinkles, from contracting; this has the effect, albeit temporarily, of smoothing the skin.
While its use as an anti-aging treatment is well known, many people are surprised to learn that it can also be used to treat a number of medical conditions.
Individuals who sweat excessively, and find deodorant ineffective, can find it beneficial. It is injected into the offending area and causes the muscles, which squeeze the sweat glands, to stop working.
It is estimated that there are over 600,000 chronic migraine sufferers in the UK. A chronic migraine is defined as having over 15 headache days a month. Tests have shown that Botox can reduce the frequency of these migraine headaches. In extreme cases, where a person has not responded to a course of drugs, injections are available on the NHS.
Crossed eyes were one of the first medical conditions to be treated with Botox. Research into its effectiveness, in this area, was originally carried out in the 1970s. It is injected into the eye muscle, which has the effect of weakening it, allowing the eyes to realign.
It can also be used to cure eye twitching, where the eyelid blinks repeatedly. One injection can give the sufferer several months’ relief.
People with this problem find they have to use the toilet more often and suffer from incontinence. If drugs fail to alleviate the condition, injections, into the bladder wall, are sometimes used as an alternative remedy.
Its use to counteract the ill-effects of muscle pain is, perhaps, less surprising than many of the other conditions described here. As already stated, it removes wrinkles by stopping the muscles contracting. Therefore, it is an obvious step to use it where this contraction causes pain. It is especially effective in the treatment of the neck and shoulder muscles, and to combat tennis elbow.
Stroke victims often suffer from pain and deformity, in their arms and legs, caused by muscle spasms. Injections, which target the “over-active” muscles, have been found to provide much-needed relief.
So, there are some of the medical benefits of this cosmetic treatment. Research is still being carried out, so don’t be surprised if even more uses are discovered in the near future.