A common question that we get from patients is “Is Botox safe?

Botox has been used safely since the year 1980 for both medical and cosmetic reasons. It was very first approved in 1980 for the treatment of blepharospasm, or twitching of the eye. And since then it’s been approved for uses such as twitching of the neck, cervical dystonias, cerebral palsy, gastrointestinal as well as neurological disorders, as well as for cosmetic reasons in things like hyperhidrosis, or excessive sweating in the underarm.

It’s very, very safely used. It’s a very well studied medication. The number one side effect is that it can cause muscle weakness in the area, which is its intended use, especially for cosmetic reasons. It’s supposed to sort of calm down muscle movement to prevent you from making any furrowing lines in the face. As well as headache, headache is another common side effect and is always very short term. If you do get a headache after your Botox treatment, you can treat it with any over-the-counter remedy.

Just like any medication, Botox is dose dependent, so the higher doses that are used, the muscle will move less, and it will last a little bit longer. The average duration of Botox is about three to four months, and it is used cosmetically in the frown and the furrow, the frontalis, which is the muscles that lifts the brow, the crow’s feet, as well as the lower face to kind of pull in the jaw line and to calm down excessive biting or clenching as well as slim the jawline.