No cosmetic procedure receives more attention or sees more doctor visits than Botox, but new concerns are being raised about the safety of injecting the botulinum toxin into one’s face in order to minimize the appearance of wrinkles. In the past ten years since its legalization, Botox has rapidly become the most popular cosmetics operation, with thousands of women in New Zealand alone getting injections each year — along with an increasing number of men. But is it safe for people to use this toxin, a known poison, in order to get the aesthetics of skin and muscle that they want?
What’s In A Name?
Botulinum toxin works by paralyzing the muscles of the face in order to prevent signals for nerves reaching skin. Once these signals reach the skin, they would reduce the production of lipids that cause skin to be firm and taught. With the injection of Botox, a face full of wrinkles will tighten up and appear years younger. This effect is only temporary, however, and anyone who wants to get the injection once for their facial wrinkles will need to get it again in only three or four months or else all the benefits will be undone.
The Tox In Botox
If one has ever had food poisoning, they may have had an experience with botulism. This poison is developed from the bacteria botulinum and can have serious health effects once it enters into the system. If one eats uncooked meats or foods, botulinum enters through the digestive system and the body begins to throw up whatever you’ve eaten in order to purge it out of your stomach. However, when injected into the face for cosmetics, only a small bit of the toxin enters into the system.
The Rare And The Common
It is quite unusual for a Botox injection to lead to any difficulties, let alone life-threatening complication. However, some side effects of the procedure are seen in patients. Numbness is common, as the toxin attacks muscle mass, while difficulty in vision and using your eyelids to focus also may occur. In extremely rare cases, viral diseases may leap from patient to patient on account of the fact that Botox contains an extract from human blood, meaning that any pathogens are capable of spreading through the injection site.
Doctors And Do It Yourselfers
Any concern about safety notes that a doctor’s routine of prescription and injection is far safer than the home Botox kits that can be purchased. These home kits available on the Internet are capable of leaving people with facial disfigurations; patients who inject it in the wrong muscles or in the wrong quantities can end up with serious health problems.