The Medical Benefits Of Botox Treatments For Seniors

Most people associate Botox injections with just vanity and beauty treatments alone. But did you know that it also has a variety of medical benefits as well? It might be quite surprising, but over the years, Botox treatments have actually proven to be effective against many ailments common in seniors.

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Botox skin injections contain tiny amounts of a neurotoxin called onabotulinumtoxinA produced by a bacterium called Clostridium botulinum. This neurotoxin, in tiny amounts, temporarily relaxes the muscles in the forehead and around the eyes by inhibiting chemical signals from nerves that cause muscles to contract or spasm. Botox treatments are minimally invasive and usually don’t cause much pain. Plus, the effects last for up to 6 months, and your doctor can treat more than one area in a single session. If you request it, your doctor will be happy to apply a numbing topical anesthetic or ice compress and gently massage the injection site to reduce discomfort.

Important Info Regarding Botox Treatments

Botox injections should only be provided by a skilled and certified professional. It’s critical that the injections be carried out in a precise manner in order to minimize any possible risks and side effects. Botox therapy can be dangerous, especially for seniors, if administered incorrectly.

Ask for a recommendation/referral from your primary care doctor, or look for a doctor who specializes in your condition and has significant experience in administering Botox treatments. He/she will provide valuable info about the procedure, and help determine if it best suits your particular needs and health.
Continue reading to learn about some of the surprising medical benefits of Botox treatments for seniors.

Reduces Chronic Migraines

Back in 1992, a Beverly Hills plastic surgeon, Dr. William Binder, made a very interesting discovery. He observed that when he gave his patients Botox to tackle their wrinkles, they also reported fewer migraines and a reduction in their severity.

Soon after, Allergan and other medical researchers tested Botox on people with chronic migraines and indeed found it to be effective. Botox was then approved by the FDA for this debilitating and painful disorder in 2010. However, some doctors are still unsure whether the drug is truly effective for migraines, or whether the placebo effect deserves the credit.

Reduces Excessive Sweating

Seniors with hyperhidrosis often experience excessive sweating, even during days that aren’t that hot. This condition can cause such profuse sweating, that it gets in their eyes and soaks their clothes. Clearly, the usual antiperspirant products that you find at a pharmacy don’t do these folks any good. This is where Botox injections can save the day. If prescription antiperspirants don’t work, Botox may be the next best choice. The FDA has approved it for excessive underarm sweating.

Off-label use of Botox may also help reduce perspiration in the hands, feet, or face. (“Off-label” means using any medication other than what the FDA has approved it for.)

Treats Overactive Bladder

Does it seem that nature calls a little too often? If so, you’re not alone — in the U.S alone, overactive bladder affects up to 33 million people, seniors included. Three in 10 men suffer from it, along with 4 in 10 women.

Luckily, studies have found that small doses of Botox can help keep OAB in check. It’s for this reason that the FDA approved Botox for this condition back in 2013. Botox helps by relaxing the bladder while also raising its storage capacity. This then results in fewer episodes of urinary incontinence, improving daily quality of life.

Lessens Neck And Shoulder Pain

Botox injections also help reduce the severity of neck and shoulder pain. These include chronic posterior neck pain and shoulder myofascial pain syndrome.
One study found that the use of Botox led to a significant reduction in patient pain scores. These improvements then resulted in improved quality of sleep. The participants also claimed that they were able to enjoy their daily activities a lot more. All these benefits of Botox then helped boost their quality of life.

Reduces Severely Cold Hands

It may not be approved by the FDA, but at the Cold Hand Clinic at the University of Chicago, doctors use Botox off-label to treat people with very cold hands. The Botox is injected into a person’s hand in order to relax muscles that surround constricted blood vessels, the cause of poor circulation. When the vessels relax and enlarge, blood flows through the hand and into the fingertips much easier, providing symptom relief. Doctors claim that the treatment can last up to three months.

Final Thoughts

Although it is considered to be relatively safe if used in tiny amounts, you should be aware that it does have some possible side effects, such as difficulty swallowing, swelling at the injection side, vision impairment, etc. However, these side effects usually go away after a few days or so. If the side effects are serious or do not go away, make an appointment with your doctor.

Also, tell your doctor if you’ve had any type of Botox injections within the past four months, or if you take muscle relaxants, sleeping aids or allergy medications. If you take blood thinners, you may need to stop taking them several days before your treatment to reduce your risk of bleeding or bruising.
Lastly, please note that Botox should not be given to individuals who are allergic to the protein in cow’s milk, have neuromuscular disease, drooping eyelids or weak facial muscles.

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