For the beauty enthusiast, Botox might be the first thing that comes to mind when wrinkles start to appear. It is a longstanding staple of the cosmetic community, from its discovery in the late 1980s to its widespread cosmetic and clinical uses today. Since Botox has become a household name, it has also garnered a reputation for itself; it often calls to mind a stereotypical “frozen” face of a Botox client who struggles to make normal expressions. But there is much more to Botox than this image suggests. At The Maas ClinicTM, we want you to know the truth about your treatments — here are our favorite fun facts about Botox to help keep you fully informed when it comes to this revolutionary injectable.

1. It’s one of the most popular cosmetic treatments in the world.

According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, over 7.2 million unique injections of Botox and similar brands Dysport and Xeomin were administered in 2017, making it the most popular non-surgical cosmetic treatment in the nation by far. In comparison, it outranked the runner-up (dermal fillers) by nearly 4.5 million treatments. On the world stage, the International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons also ranks Botox-type injections as the number one non-surgical procedure on the market today, with these treatments comprising nearly half of all injectables recorded in 2016.

2. It has very few risks and side effects.

As a non-invasive treatment, your risks of developing an infection or other complication from a Botox injection are slim to none. The active ingredient in Botox, botulinum toxin A, can sound scary — but it’s simply a naturally-occurring protein that is known for its muscle-relaxing properties, and the trace amounts present in each Botox injection are carefully controlled and extremely well-researched. You can lower your risks even further by fully informing your plastic surgeon of any possible conflicting medications or health concerns, or by asking that they use the lowest possible dose until you feel more comfortable with your treatments.

3. It adheres to the highest standards of clinical quality.

As an FDA-approved substance, Botox is under strict regulation and monitoring to ensure every vial is produced in a sterile environment with exact amounts of each ingredient. From purified air in the production area to full-coverage suits for the safety and sterility of the trained technicians, the environment in which Botox is produced guarantees quality control. Plus, Allergan, Botox’s parent company, has a dedicated quality assurance department and consistently exceeds FDA guidelines for drug manufacturing safety and cleanliness.

4. It won’t leave you looking stiff.

When Botox is administered by a properly trained professional, your results will be absolutely natural and won’t interfere with your facial expressions. The key to creating beautiful results from Botox is knowing where to place each injection and what dosage to use in each location. Since Botox is such a popular procedure, nearly any certified provider of aesthetic services will be able to give you the look you want without the dreaded facial freeze. When you choose Botox, make sure you schedule your treatment with a reputable and licensed provider like a board-certified facial plastic surgeon or dermatologist.

5. It treats your muscles, not your skin.

Botox is most effective at treating wrinkles caused by overused muscles becoming stuck in a certain expression. Make a worried face or raise your eyebrows — if you see vertical lines appear between your eyebrows or horizontal lines across your forehead, these can eventually form into wrinkles if you make this kind of expression frequently. The active ingredient in Botox, botulinum toxin type A, is a muscle relaxant — when Botox is injected into your facial muscles, any built-up tension that results in wrinkles is released, allowing your skin to settle into a smoother texture.

6. It has several different FDA-approved uses.

Botox is currently approved to treat much more than just wrinkles. It can treat muscle spasms in the limbs, neck or face; eye twitches or uneven eye positioning; underarm sweat; migraines and bladder dysfunction, to name a few other uses. While it remains most popular as a cosmetic treatment, doctors and scientists are always investigating the properties of botulinum toxin and finding ways to use it to treat a variety of other health conditions.

7. It fits into busy schedules.

Since Botox is administered with just a short series of injections, your Botox appointment will typically last no longer than 30 minutes. Botox also does not cause lingering visual side effects like redness or swelling, so you will be able to return to your daily activities immediately after your session. You can make a Botox appointment on your lunch break, after Saturday brunch or even on your way to get the kids from school. The only time that plastic surgeons recommend avoiding Botox is immediately before or after exercising — heightened blood pressure can interfere with your results.

8. It’s still being researched and improved.

After nearly two decades of use, Botox research and clinical trials have been published in top medical and science journals hundreds of times over. Expert plastic surgeons everywhere are always searching for better or different ways to use Botox treatments. It is being studied as a treatment for depression, muscle pain and postoperative atrial fibrillation, among others. In fact, researchers led by Corey S. Maas MDTM at The Maas ClinicTM have recently been investigating the botulinum toxin treatment Xeomin to determine dosage limits for longer-lasting results. The future of Botox and botulinum toxin injections is sure to bring many more improvements to light.

To learn more about Botox and what it might be able to do for you, contact The Maas ClinicTM to schedule a consultation at our locations in San Francisco or Tahoe. Corey S. Maas MDTM is an internationally recognized expert in facial cosmetics, so you can feel confident that you will achieve your best possible results in our hands. Call us today at 415-567-7000 to make your first appointment.

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