6 Surprising Uses for BOTOX®

Brunette woman smiling at camera

BOTOX Cosmetic injections are the most popular anti-wrinkle treatments in the world and virtually everyone has heard of the product. BOTOX is certainly popular in The Woodlands, TX, among our patients, who love the way it minimizes facial wrinkles in a way that looks natural. But there are many ways BOTOX can be used that would surprise most people.

In fact, BOTOX didn’t even start out as a cosmetic treatment. Ophthalmologists starting using botulinum toxin more than 40 years ago to treat patients with strabismus, sometimes called crossed eyes, to align the eyes’ position. About 30 years ago, a physician noticed that BOTOX reduced wrinkles in the area around the eyes. Soon after, the FDA approved BOTOX as a cosmetic treatment.

What Else Does BOTOX Treat?

The range of cosmetic and medical conditions treated by BOTOX includes gummy smiles to migraine headaches. BOTOX is a neurotoxin that works to reduce wrinkles and lines by interfering with signals sent by the nervous system to tiny muscles in the face that contract when we squint, frown, look surprised, or make other expressions. Over time, those changing facial expressions create wrinkles. BOTOX and Dysport® are very similar anti-wrinkle treatments.

The same way that BOTOX­ temporarily paralyzes the muscles that cause wrinkles helps treat many other conditions. These include:

Gummy smile: Some people feel self-conscious about smiling because their upper gums are more prominent than their teeth. This happens because the muscle that pulls up on the upper lip lifts it too high. How can BOTOX help? Precise injections target that muscle, so it relaxes and releases the tension that causes a gummy smile. You can still smile but in a way that looks more pleasing.

Jawline slimming: A well-defined, contoured jawline is a feature that’s especially popular right now. Maybe it’s all the Zooming that people are doing. Whatever the reason, BOTOX slims overdeveloped jawlines by relaxing the masseter muscle. This is the “chewing muscle” in the upper jaw that can create the appearance of a square jaw—something that men might like but that women typically want to avoid.

“Orange peel chin”: It’s easy to think of the chin as simply a bony structure covered by skin. But there is a muscle that covers the chin—the mentalis muscle—that can create a dimpled look similar to an orange peel when it contracts. Again, BOTOX injections temporarily relax that muscle so the skin looks smooth. Experienced injectors understand the precision needed for this treatment to avoid weakening muscles used to move your mouth.

Excessive underarm sweating: Hyperhidrosis—excessive underarm sweating—is more than a nuisance. For some people, it limits their professional and social interactions because they’re self-conscious about the sweat soaking through their clothes. It can also be costly for women and men who have to replace their wardrobes constantly. BOTOX injections offer temporary relief.

Chronic migraines: The FDA has approved BOTOX for the treatment of chronic migraines, which is defined as having 15 or more headaches a month for 3 months. Even though researchers haven’t conclusively learned what causes migraines, studies have shown that tiny muscles near the temples that squeeze the nerves may be the reason for the excruciating condition. BOTOX relaxes those muscles and relieves the pain.

Lip flip: The era of selfies and Instagram posts is making people a little obsessed with their lips. We see a lot of patients who want to augment their lips with fillers, but more recently people are asking about the BOTOX lip flip. This procedure involves injecting BOTOX conservatively into muscles at the side of the upper lip. The result is the lip flips outward in a way that is aesthetically appealing.

It’s important to emphasize that you should make sure your injector is experienced and understands the difference between BOTOX’s various uses. Both Dr. Paul Gill and Dr. Anita Gill perform BOTOX injections at The Gill Center, as well as our licensed injectors. You can see the types of results we produce for cosmetic patients in our gallery of before-and-after photos.

If you’re interested in BOTOX injections for any reason, including minimizing crow’s feet, worry lines, and forehead wrinkles, contact us using the online form to request a consultation. Or call us at (281) 853-5308 to get in touch. We look forward to hearing from you.

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* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.

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