Everything You’ve Always Wanted to Know About Botox
If you’ve searched the internet looking for treatments that help alleviate the signs of aging, such as wrinkles and crow’s feet, there’s a very good chance you’d have come across Botox. It is one of the most popular treatments for wrinkles, fine lines, and crow’s feet.
So, what is Botox? Well, that’s what we are here to find out.
An Introduction to Botox
Botox is short for “Botulinum Toxin.” As the name indicates, this is a toxin that is extracted from a bacterium known as Clostridium botulinum. Clostridium botulinum is found in a variety of environments, such as forests, lakes, soil, and other natural settings.
The bacterium is also found in the intestinal tracts of fish and mammals and in the organs and gills of shellfish and crabs. Now, the naturally occurring instances of the bacterium are generally harmless. However, when the spores start to turn into vegetative cells, the cell population begins to grow. At this point in time, they start producing the botulinum toxin, which is a deadly neurotoxin that causes a disease called botulism.
Neurotoxins work by targeting the nervous system and blocking signals that allow neurons to communicate. So, essentially, Botox is one of the deadliest substances known to man. But don’t worry! As stated earlier, the toxin causes botulism, which is a disease that results from high concentrations of botulinum toxin in the system.
The toxin enters the body mainly through contaminated food, especially canned or tinned food. If left untreated, it can lead to respiratory failure and eventual death.
Now, you’re probably wondering how such a toxic substance can be useful to humans. Well, it all boils down the very way in which it works.
How Botox Eliminates The Signs of Aging
Now, we know that frowning and laughing are some of the facial expressions that cause creases and lines to form. So, in order to prevent this, we use Botox. As stated earlier, Botox is a neurotoxin. It prevents the communication between neurons by blocking the signals.
So, when this happens, the communication between our brains and bodies stop. This leads to extensive paralysis. However, when injected in small quantities, the paralysis is minimal and contained. Only certain facial muscles are targeted and since the muscles don’t move as much, the development of creases and lines is prevented. This keeps the skin looking smooth and firm.
You see, muscle contraction is dependent on a chemical known as acetylcholine, which is a neurotransmitter. The chemical is released at the junction where muscle cells meet nerve endings. The acetylcholine then attaches itself to the receptors present on the muscle cells, causing them to shorten or contract.
But, when Botox is injected, it prevents the release of acetylcholine. So, the entire process is disrupted, preventing the contraction of muscles.
Contact Our Office
Botox has proven to be a very effective treatment for the elimination crow’s feet, wrinkles, and frown or laugh lines. If you’re interested in learning more about this treatment, contact our office in Temecula to schedule your consultation with Dr. Balikian. He is a highly skilled plastic surgeon who will help guide you through the process from beginning to end.