If you are thinking about getting Botox, but still haven’t done so because you merely don’t know how Botox works, then this information is for you. When you are done, you will know how Botox works, what Botox does and what Botox can’t do.
Botox is really a protein. Actually, it is an extremely tiny amount of an extremely purified protein. There is absolutely no bacteria in a vial of Botox, NONE. The confusion has regarding how Botox is made. The disease, Botulism is the result of a bacteria that creates huge quantities of 7 different proteins all a the same time. These 7 proteins are labeled A, B, C, D, E, F and G. Only the A and B proteins have any medical use. When Botox is done, the “A” protein is extracted, purified and precisely measured. A vial of has about 5 billionths of a gram of the highly purified protein. When a doctor gets the vial of Botox, it actually looks empty. Water is included with the vial so your protein could be drawn in to a syringe and injected.
So what happens once the Botox is injected? The Botox spreads about 1 cm. Any spread beyond 1 cm is indeed small so it has hardly any chance to do anything at all. The protein is then absorbed into the nerves that are within 1 cm of the injection site. Over another 15 minutes, the Botox protein, now within the nerve, finds another protein called a SNAP-25, attaches to it, and dissolves it. Along the way to do so, the Botox itself dissolves. Put simply, after 15 minutes, the Botox is GONE.
At this time, the nerve is still alive and well, but it has lost nearly all of it’s SNAP-25 proteins. Without SNAP-25 proteins, the nerve doesn’t learn how to talk to the muscle. The muscle is perfectly fine, but it is not getting any messages from the nerve. So, they both just sit there and do nothing. It takes about 3 months for the nerve to make new SNAP-25 proteins. That is why the Botox generally seems to last for about 3 months. Remember, the botoks disappears in about 15 minutes. The duration of the consequence is dependant on how long it takes for those nerves to make new SNAP-25 proteins.
Observe that I didn’t even mention skin or wrinkles when talking about how Botox works. That is because Botox does NOTHING to skin. Botox only works on the muscles underneath your skin, not your skin itself. That is why Botox won’t eliminate deep wrinkles in your skin. It relaxes the muscles so your skin layer isn’t being moved around as much. The wrinkles that appear whenever you move parts of your muscles will disappear quickly. If you keep getting retreated with the Botox without letting it wear off between treatments, even the deep wrinkles will begin to improve because your skin isn’t being folded over and over again.
To sum up, Botox is really a protein that dissolves another protein called SNAP-25 which exists within the nerves. Having less SNAP-25 proteins prevents the nerve from speaking with the muscles which in turn causes the muscles to relax. The wrinkle reduction is as a result of muscles not moving as much as normal. The Botox itself does nothing to the skin.