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What are the Different Uses of Eye Botox®?

By Alex Henderson
Updated May 17, 2024
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Botox® is a toxin derived from a deadly poison known as Botulinum toxin. It is secreted by the Colistridium Botulinum bacterium. This form of bacteria has had a reputation in human history as being deadly, with a fatality rate of 60 percent for botulism-based food poisoning. Scientists over the years have found ways to make the toxin work for human beings, though, with cosmetic treatments for the eyes among the toxin's many uses.

Eye Botox® injections are commonly used in the early 21st century for cosmetic purposes. They work in cosmetic surgery by paralyzing the nerves of the face for a period of four to six months. This mild facial paralysis smoothes wrinkles and frown lines in the face, especially crow’s feet at the corners of the eyes. It also works in bags around the eyes and makes the face look younger and smoother. The treatment is not permanent and must be repeated if the results are to be sustained.

Botox® got its start, though, as a purely medical treatment. Scientists started experimenting in the 1950s with using the toxin for medical treatments. It is perfect for inhibiting human nerve interactions, so it seemed plausible to utilize tiny amounts of the toxin to paralyze muscles undergoing excess stimulation. One of its early uses was to treat eye muscle diseases such as strabismus, or crossed eyes.

Eye Botox® also is used to ease ocular muscle spasms such as blepharospasm, a condition in which the eyelids close because of a muscle spasm. It can be frustrating and incapacitating, causing temporary blindness until the spasm ends and allows the eyelids to reopen. The problem can be so serious as to involve non-ocular muscles nearby, including those of the mouth, forehead and neck. Eye Botox® injections in small quantities can ease the spasm and prevent them from recurring for several months.

Most diseases treated by botulism toxin involve creating paralysis for relief from overactive nerves. These impulses typically are the result of a brain or nerve impulse defect. In theory, botulism toxin can be used to shut down many aspects of overactive nerves. Other promising uses of Botox® include the treatment of excess perspiration, migraines, assorted other muscle spasms not already mentioned, vocal cord dysfunction, bedwetting, diabetic neuropathy, wound healing and anal fissure. Side effects of eye Botox® can include drooping eyelids; redness, especially at the sight of the injection; pain; and flu-like symptoms.

WiseGEEK is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

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