4 Surprising Medical Uses For Botox
Botox or Botulinum toxin injections are widely recognized for their ability to reduce signs of aging, such as wrinkles and fine lines. Botulinum toxin was the top nonsurgical cosmetic procedure worldwide in 2020, with over 6.2 million procedures performed.
Many people use Botox as a preventative method, while others opt for the treatment to target existing signs of aging. The effectiveness of the treatment contributes vastly to its global popularity. But did you know that there are a variety of medical uses for Botox?
Reduce Chronic Migraine Frequency
Chronic migraine is a condition that occurs when an individual has recurrent attacks of headache at least 15 days a month that can last for between four to 73 hours. The pain may worsen with physical activity, resulting in sensitivity to light, nausea, and dizziness.
Botox became a mainstream treatment for chronic migraine after the approval of onabotulinumtoxinA (OBTA) to prevent chronic migraine in 2010 in the USA and 2011 in Canada. Botox blocks chemicals called neurotransmitters that carry pain signals from your brain. So, the injection stops the chemicals before they get to the nerve endings around your head or neck, where the headaches begin to form.
Control Overactive Bladder
Another surprising benefit of Botox injections is that it reduces urinary incontinence caused by an overactive bladder. An individual with bladder dysfunction may face challenges holding urine, leading to uncontrollable release. It is more common among women but also affects men.
When Botox is used to treat urge incontinence or overactive bladder, the injections help the muscles relax, allowing you more time to visit the bathroom when you need to urinate. However, Botox is not a permanent solution for an overactive bladder, and you may need to repeat the treatment six to eight months later.
Relax Muscle Contractures
Muscle contracture occurs when your muscles, tendons, joints, or other tissues tighten or shorten, causing a deformity. Some symptoms include pain or loss of movement in the affected area. The most common causes of contracture are inactivity and scarring from an injury or burn, but they can also occur due to neurological conditions, such as cerebral palsy.
These contracted muscles can be relaxed with Botox as the injections block certain chemical signals from nerves that cause the muscles to contract. The treatment relieves spasticity symptoms, such as pain and muscle stiffness.
Reduce Excessive Sweating
Excessive sweating occurs when an individual has hyperhidrosis, which can affect your whole body or specific areas. Although this condition has no significant health risk, hyperhidrosis can cause substantial impairment in quality of life, including limitations in work and social relationships, physical and leisure activities, and impairments in emotional and mental health.
Botox injections block the nerve signals responsible for sweating, stopping the sweat glands from producing too much sweat. The dryness typically lasts four to six months, and you will need retreatment as the nerves regenerate. As you repeat the treatment, you may be able to go longer between treatments in the long run.
Although Botox is primarily noted for its ability to address signs of aging, the injections can treat many medical conditions. If you’re interested in getting Botox for a cosmetic or medical condition, speak to a licensed provider for more information.