top of page


Botox injections are shots that use a toxin to prevent a muscle from moving for a limited time. These shots are often used to smooth wrinkles on the face. They're also used to treat neck spasms, sweating, overactive bladder, lazy eye and other conditions. Botox shots also may help prevent migraine.

The medicine in Botox injections is made from the same toxin that causes a type of food poisoning called botulism. But the forms of purified botulinum toxin used by licensed health care providers meet medical control standards. 


Why it's done

Botox shots block certain chemical signals from nerves that cause muscles to contract. The most common use of these injections is to relax the facial muscles that cause frown lines and other facial wrinkles.

Botox injections also are used to ease symptoms of some health conditions. It's not a cure. Examples of medical conditions that might be treated with Botox injections include:

  • Neck spasms. In this painful condition, the neck muscles contract in an uncontrolled way. This causes the head to twist or turn into an uncomfortable position. The condition also is called cervical dystonia.

  • Other muscle spasms. Cerebral palsy and other conditions of the nervous system can cause the limbs to pull in toward the center of the body. Muscle spasms also can cause eye twitching.

  • Lazy eye. The most common cause of lazy eye is an imbalance in the muscles used for moving the eye. Lazy eye also is called crossed eyes or misaligned eyes.

  • Sweating. Botox might be used for a condition in which people sweat a lot even when they're not hot or working up a sweat. It's called excessive sweating or hyperhidrosis.

  • Migraine. Botox injections may help reduce how often you get a migraine. This treatment is used mainly for people who have headaches 15 or more days a month. When you get serious headaches that often, the condition is called chronic migraine. Treatment is needed about every three months to retain the benefit.

  • Bladder problems. Botox shots can also help reduce urinary incontinence caused by an overactive bladder.


Botox injections are usually safe when you're under the care of a licensed and skilled health care provider. The procedure can result in unwanted results or even cause harm if it's given incorrectly. Possible side effects and unwanted results include:

  • Pain, swelling or bruising at the injection site.

  • Headache or flu-like symptoms.

  • Droopy eyelids or crooked eyebrows.

  • A crooked smile or drooling.

  • Watery or dry eyes.

  • Infection at the injection site.

Rarely, the medicine may spread to parts of the body where it isn't supposed to go. It can cause symptoms there. Call your health care provider right away if you have any of these symptoms hours or weeks after your procedure:

  • Muscle weakness.

  • Vision problems.

  • Trouble talking or swallowing.

  • Breathing problems.

  • Allergic reaction.

  • Loss of bladder control.


As a rule, health care providers don't recommend Botox if you're pregnant or breastfeeding.Botox is a prescription medicine and must be used only under the care of a licensed and skilled health care provider.


Facial fillers are substances injected into the skin to smooth wrinkles and make them less noticeable. Injection of a facial filler is generally an outpatient procedure that's done with numbing medication. The procedure takes up to an hour.

You might have mild discomfort, bruising and swelling for up to a week. After the swelling goes down, you might need a touch-up injection for best results. How long the effect lasts depends on the type of wrinkle and filler, among other factors.

Facial fillers, or soft tissue fillers, generally aren't used for people who have suppressed immune systems or who take blood-thinning medications (anticoagulants)


Types of Facial Fillers

Facial fillers include:

  • Hyaluronic acid (Restylane, Juvederm, others). This natural component of the skin's connective tissue is the most common filler used for wrinkles. The results typically last 6 to 12 months.

  • Calcium hydroxylapatite (Radiesse). This filler is used to contour the jaw line, restore volume in the cheeks, and treat deeper wrinkles and skin folds. The results last up to a year when used for contouring and 3 years when used to fill wrinkles.

  • Fat grafting. With this method, fat is removed from the lower abdomen or other area through liposuction. It is then injected through small incisions into the cheek, temple, lips or forehead. The effects might be permanent. But achieving the desired results usually requires more than one session as well as overfilling the site because the body reabsorbs some of the fat.

  • Permanent soft tissue filler (Bellafill). This filler is used to smooth deep wrinkles around the mouth. The body can't absorb this type of filler, so it doesn't require reinjection. Permanent soft tissue filler generally isn't recommended as a first-time facial filler treatment.

  • Poly-L-lactic acid (Sculptra). This product is used to restore facial volume lost due to aging or illness. Two or three sessions are usually required. The effects last up to two years.


As with any procedure, injecting facial filler for wrinkles has risks, including:

  • Allergic reaction at the injection site or throughout the body

  • Swelling and inflammation

  • Changes in skin color (postinflammatory hyperpigmentation) on brown or Black skin

  • Mild pain

  • Bleeding or bruising at the injection site

  • Infection

  • Scarring

  • Irregularities in the surface, contours and firmness of the skin

  • Rarely, blood vessel damage

bottom of page