It’s certainly not uncommon for people to think that cosmetic surgery is only used by people looking to turn the clock back a bit, certainly where Botox is concerned. But if you’re on dermal fillers foundation courses and similar, make sure you let your patients know that there are other benefits to having certain procedures that they may not have considered before.
Researchers in the US are now looking into whether Botox can actually be used to treat depression successfully, with Dr Eric Finzi from the Chevy Chase Cosmetic telling CBS News that the belief now is that facial expressions form a part of the brain network that’s related to mood.
He explained that the point between the eyebrows where frown lines often appear (known as the ‘elevens’) is where emotions like sadness, anger and fear all express themselves. Botox works by inhibiting the activity of this particular muscle, making it harder to feel such negative emotions.
Vivian Cooke, an army veteran, also spoke to the newspaper, saying that she has long been struggling with depression and has turned to all sorts of different medication and therapies to help her manage her symptoms… but none were effective and also came with side-effects like stomach and headaches.
A few years ago, she decided to give Botox a go, saying: “I found overall my mood was better on a day-to-day basis. I had less problems with depression.”
Chevy Chase researchers certainly aren’t alone in their pursuit of knowledge where Botox and depression are concerned. Pharmaceutical company Allergan is currently engaged in late-stage clinical trials, looking into how Botox could be used as a therapy for major depressive disorder in women.
Although phase 2 trial data showed that Botox did fail to provide a statistically significant medical benefit where this disorder is concerned, the researchers are confident that a larger trial will ultimately prove that botulinum toxin will have a significant impact on depression.
And back in December last year, the University of Texas-Austin looked into a correlation between Botox and depression, with co-author of the study Dr Jason Reichenberg saying that one of the theories is that while the toxin doesn’t make people smile, it does stop them from frowning. According to a Yahoo report, it was found that depression scores fell 42 per cent in patients who were given Botox, compared to 15 per cent of those who were given a placebo.
Dr Reichenberg commented on the results, saying that it is “very exciting” to have another potential tool to help fight depression, although he did go on to add that he doesn’t believe the treatment option will replace antidepressants.
That said, it would certainly be good for many people out there to be given the option of a treatment that doesn’t have any particular side-effects.
If you’d like to find out more about Botox courses and others that we run, get in touch with us today.