Botox injections have revolutionized the way physicians treat lines and wrinkles on the face. And now, Botox may also provide a promising side effect to improve depression.
Typical Uses of Botox
Botox is a safe treatment that when injected relaxes the muscle resulting in smoother skin between the eyebrows, effectively reducing frown lines. The treatment offers dramatic improvements to reverse the signs of aging and can last up to 3 months.
Treatments do not require anesthetic, with users feeling a minimal “pin prick’ sensation. Users should also be able to resume normal activities almost immediately, and within a few days will be able to enjoy the full effects of their Botox treatment – smoother and younger looking skin!
Botox Injectables Effect on Depression
According to a recent study by Michelle Magid, MD, a clinical associate professor of psychiatry at the University of Texas Southwestern in Austin, Botox injections have shown an antidepressive effect when injected between the eyebrows – and lasts even after the wrinkles reappear.
While there have been several anecdotal reports of mood improvement after Botox treatments, there has not been a clear indication of whether the treatment has a direct effect on mood, or is merely a secondary effect of treatment.
The study showed that participants who received the Botox injection first followed by a placebo saw the cosmetic effects of Botox wear off between 12-16 weeks, however the improvement in depression was maintained for a full 24 weeks.
There are two reasons for the improvement in depression: 1- If people smile more and frown less, they are more likely to have improved social experiences which can lift moods; and 2 –When people are unable to make angry expressions due to Botox treatments in the glabellar region, there is less activity in the amygdala. The amygdala is linked to the glabellar region and is the control center for anxiety, trauma, and fear.
While the study does not provide a clear answer as to whether or not Botox treatments should be used to treat depression, it does show that more research is needed to understand the connection between our emotions and expressions.
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