Typically when someone thinks of Botox they think of it as a treatment that is used to prevent fine lines and wrinkles. However, did you know that you can use Botox for mental health issues such as depression and anxiety? New studies have shown that Botox can improve symptoms of depression and anxiety faster than traditional pills.
Depression is a common mental health issue that most people will struggle with at one point in their lives or another. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, 16.2 million or 6.7% of adults in the United States had at least one major depressive episode in 2016.
- The median age of depression onset is 32.5 years old.
- The prevalence of adults with a major depressive episode is highest among individuals between 18 and 25.
- 8.7% of women have depression
- 5.3% of men have depression
What causes depression? According to WebMD, these are some of the factors that may increase your chance of experiencing depression:
- Abuse. Past physical, sexual, or emotional abuse can increase the vulnerability to clinical depression later in life.
- Certain medications. Some drugs, such as isotretinoin (used to treat acne), the antiviral drug interferon-alpha, and corticosteroids, can increase your risk of depression.
- Conflict. Depression in someone who has the biological vulnerability to develop depression may result from personal conflicts or disputes with family members or friends.
- Death or a loss. Sadness or grief from the death or loss of a loved one, though natural, may increase the risk of depression.
- Genetics. A family history of depression may increase the risk. It’s thought that depression is a complex trait, meaning that there are probably many different genes that each exert small effects, rather than a single gene that contributes to disease risk. The genetics of depression, like most psychiatric disorders, are not as simple or straightforward as in purely genetic diseases such as Huntington’s chorea or cystic fibrosis.
- Major events. Even good events such as starting a new job, graduating, or getting married can lead to depression. So can moving, losing a job or income, getting divorced, or retiring. However, the syndrome of clinical depression is never just a “normal” response to stressful life events.
- Other personal problems. Problems such as social isolation due to other mental illnesses or being cast out of a family or social group can contribute to the risk of developing clinical depression.
- Serious illnesses. Sometimes depression co-exists with a major illness or may be triggered by another medical condition.
- Substance abuse. Nearly 30% of people with substance abuse problems also have major or clinical depression. Even if drugs or alcohol temporarily make you feel better, they ultimately will aggravate depression.
Symptoms of depression:
- Mood: anxiety, apathy, general discontent, guilt, hopelessness, loss of interest or pleasure in activities, mood swings, or sadness
- Behavioral: agitation, excessive crying, irritability, restlessness, or social isolation
- Sleep: early awakening, excess sleepiness, insomnia, or restless sleep
- Whole-body: excessive hunger, fatigue, or loss of appetite
- Cognitive: lack of concentration, slowness in activity, or thoughts of suicide
- Weight: weight gain or weight loss
- Also common: poor appetite or repeatedly going over thoughts
Symptoms of anxiety:
- Behavioral: hypervigilance, irritability, or restlessness
- Cognitive: lack of concentration, racing thoughts, or unwanted thoughts
- Whole-body: fatigue or sweating
- Also common: anxiety, excessive worry, fear, feeling of impending doom, insomnia, nausea, palpitations, or trembling
How can Botox help?
What is Botox?
Botox is a drug that weakens the muscles in the face. How does it help to reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles? Botox blocks signals from the nerves to the muscles. The muscle that has been injected with Botox is then unable to contract. This leads to wrinkles and lines that are relaxed and softened. It is essentially temporarily paralyzing the facial muscles that are the cause of wrinkles. The treatment lasts on average of between two and four months. Overtime if you get Botox consistently you can spread your treatments out further because you won’t need to get injections as frequently.
Areas to get Botox:
DAO (corners of the mouth)
Neck (Platysmal bands)
So how does getting Botox for mental health actually work? Botox causes muscle movement expressions such as frowning or furrowing your brows to not be possible. These muscle movements are a reflection of your mood. When you feel sad, angry, annoyed, or upset about a situation you tend to wear the emotional expressions of that feeling on your face. Your muscles form into an expression to show that emotion. Facial expressions are therefore a part of the circuit of the brain related to a particular mood. When those same emotions are no longer able to be expressed on the face due to Botox, the emotion isn’t registered by the brain in the same way. When the muscles can’t be used to express that emotion it becomes a lot harder to feel and express those emotions. Therefore, people who are struggling with anxiety and/or depression end up feeling happier because they are no longer constantly able to express the emotions of anxiety or depression on their faces. The way that our emotions are expressed on our faces greatly affects our mood. If you smile for a decent amount of time you will begin to feel happier because the brain registers a smile with the emotion of joy or happiness. So if a depressed or anxious person is always frowning or furrowing their brows then the brain is registering sadness, fear, anger, or annoyance and that emotion is going to continuously be felt by that person.
Botox for mental health: The study
In a study that consisted of twenty-three men and nineteen women with chronic and treatment-resistant depression, there was a 27% reduction in depression scores three weeks post Botox treatment. In just three weeks their depression was reduced by 27% by getting Botox injections.
If you are interested in offering your clients Botox, consider taking one of our courses!
We offer everything from a nine-day cosmetic laser and injectables training to a two-day injectable training. You’ll walk away feeling confident and ready to do Botox injections on clients. Not only can you help people feel more confident in their skin and reduce the signs of aging, but you can also use Botox for mental health and help people reduce the side effects of depression and anxiety.
Who can perform Botox?
Botox can be performed by Doctors, Nurses, Physician Assistants, and other qualified health professionals.
Here’s an overview of our 2-day course:
By the end of our 2-Day Botox and Filler course, you will be able to:
- Identify who is a candidate for Botox and facial fillers
- Understand the aesthetic consultation process
- Explain why lines and folds occur and how to treat them using various cosmetic injections
- Explain the indications and contraindications of dermal fillers and Botox injections
- Demonstrate proper cosmetic injection technique for various anti-aging services
- Explain the anatomy and musculature of the face
- Understand the different types of cosmetic fillers (Juvederm, Restylane, etc.)
- Identify the risks and benefits of various anti-aging services
- Explain the risks, benefits, and pre- and post-care protocols
If you are interested in becoming a Botox injector and getting started in this exciting industry, then check out our courses and give us a call at 1-800-982-6817 for more information!