What is Botox?
Botox is a purified protein that, in cosmetic uses, is injected into specific facial muscles to smooth out the appearance of wrinkles. It is one of the most extensively studied cosmetic treatments and is approved for cosmetic use in 78 countries.
How does Botox work?
After being injected into the facial muscles, the protein attaches itself to the nerve endings of the motor muscles and prevents the release of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine from axon endings at the neuromuscular junction, causing the muscles to go to sleep. This prevents the muscles from contracting. Since contracting muscles cause wrinkles to develop, Botox allows the skin over the muscle to relax and become smoothed out.
Common cosmetic applications
Botox is most commonly used to smooth out the appearance of facial wrinkles. Typical areas it addresses are:
- Bridge of nose
- Outer corners of eyes
- Upper lip
- Lower lip
What to expect
Botox is a quick procedure. The injection process generally takes about 10 minutes. Often referred to as a “lunchtime procedure,” you’ll be able to go about your normal routine immediately after leaving the office. It usually takes three to seven days for the effects to be noticeable, and the results typically last between three and four months before the procedure needs to be repeated.