Although most people associate BOTOX® with improving signs of aging in the face, this botulinum toxin formula has several surprising uses. In addition to being FDA approved for treating migraine headaches, excessive sweating, and overactive bladders, BOTOX® has also been found to have a positive effect on mood and may help treat depression.
Our facial musculature is important for not only expressing our feelings but also for regulating our moods. When we make a facial expression, it sends a response to the brain to reinforce the emotions for that expression. So when we smile or frown because we’re happy or sad, respectively, our brains strengthen that particular emotion. This information, when combined with the ability of BOTOX® to weaken the facial muscles, has shown that there may be an alternative to the traditional treatments for depression.
Several studies have suggested that BOTOX® can interfere with this process between facial expression and emotion and prevent the feelings of depression from reaching the brain. When the muscles involved in expressing a depressed emotion, such as a frown, were treated with BOTOX®, patients diagnosed with depression exhibited improved mood and reduced symptoms of depression.
At the Asklepios Clinic North Ochsenzoll in Hamburg, Germany, a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study recently confirmed these findings once again. The study showed that just six weeks after a single treatment, patients who received BOTOX® in the facial muscles that contribute to the wrinkles known as glabellar frown lines showed a 47.1 percent reduction in the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HAMD17) compared to a 9.2 percent reduction in HAMD17 in the placebo group. At the end of the 16-week study, the improvement was even greater. This study confirms that BOTOX® may be a new, effective, and therapeutic tool for the treatment of depression.
If you are interested in BOTOX®, please call (303) 683-3235 or fill out our online contact form for more information.