Botox (botulinum toxin) is a drug used as an anti-wrinkle cosmetic injectable. It reduces the activity of muscles, and is injected into certain areas of the face in order to reduce facial muscle activity to reduce the appearance of wrinkles and lines.
As a neurotoxin that temporarily paralyses muscles, in addition to it’s cosmetic purposes, it’s also used as a muscle relaxant in the treatment of certain muscle conditions, such as jaw clenching.
It’s considered as a relatively safe procedure with minimal complications, and has been approved by the FDA for over 18 years (1). The results of Botox injections can usually been seen 1 to 3 days after the procedure, with the maximum effect being visible at around 10-14 days (2).
What are the side effects of Botox injections?
Getting Botox injections is considered as a relatively safe procedure and the chances of any adverse side effects is quite rare.
Below is a list of potential side effects after getting Botox injections, but these should normally subside after a few days without any serious complications. These include:
- Bruising, redness and swelling where the injections took place (most common)
- Rash and itchiness around injection site
- Headache or nausea
- Allergic reactions
- Droopy or swollen eyelids
- Facial Swelling
Botox aftercare tips
- In order to avoid any risks of infection, avoid touching or covering the sites of injections. This includes not applying any makeup or covering the area with garments such as a headband, for at least 4 hours after the procedure.
- Don’t rub or massage the area of injections as this can affect the Botox.
- Ice (wrapped up or cold compress) can be applied gently to the area, but be careful not to apply any pressure.
- Try to stay upright and do not sleep for at least 4 hours after the procedure.
- It’s advised to avoid any strenuous physical activity and excessive alcohol consumption for at least 1 day after the procedure.
How long does Botox last?
How long the effects of Botox can last usually depends on several factors such as the anatomy and metabolism of the person, the area which the Botox targeted, and how expressive or how much a person uses their facial muscles (3).
While the effects vary from person to person, the effects of Botox usually last around 3-6 months, with an average of 4 months (4).