If you have any familiarity with facial cosmetics, you likely have some degree of familiarity with Botox®, the incredibly popular injectable developed by Allergan. However, this familiarity probably starts and stops with Botox being used to smooth the skin and clear up wrinkles. You probably had no idea that when it was first introduced in the late 80’s, it was exclusively used by ophthalmologists to treat optic muscle disorders. And that’s just the tip of Botox iceberg. Here are some of the more surprising uses of Botox:
(Keep in mind that Botox is not FDA-approved for all of the following)
- TMJ Treatment: Temporomandibular joint disorder is a condition that affects the jaw muscles, causing severe pain and discomfort. There are various ways to treat TMJ, but one of more offbeat, surprising treatments is with Botox. Injections of Botox have been shown to help improve jaw functionality and reduce pain among TMJ sufferers. As with most Botox treatments, the results are not permanent.
- Depression: Believe it or not, Botox treatment has been linked with alleviating the symptoms of depression. You might think this has something to do with improved appearance or self-image, but the studies have linked the improved mental state with Botox injections long after the esthetic effects of the injections have faded.
- Urinary Incontinence: That’s right; Botox just might stop you from peeing your pants. Don’t believe us? Well, it’s actually got FDA-approval for use with people suffering from neurological disorders or spinal cord injuries affecting bladder control. Off-label, it also has proven effective as a treatment for overactive bladder.
- Sweating: Another surprising FDA-approved Botox treatment is for people suffering from excessive armpit perspiration. The Botox treatments are not permanent, but can provide relief for as long as six or seven months.
- Migraines: If you’ve ever suffered a migraine headache, then you’d likely be willing to take just about any remedy. But a Botox solution might surprise you. FDA-approved for treating sufferers of chronic migraines, Botox injections could drastically curb the number of migraines you experience in a month.
These are just a few of the surprising uses of Botox. Although primarily used for esthetic purposes, Botox has proven to be a highly adaptive tool across a variety of medical fields.