Botox injections help stop facial spasms by blocking chemical signals that cause muscle contractions, according to Mayo Clinic. When injected, the botulinum toxin used in the Botox preparation temporarily paralyzes muscle activity in the face.
Patients typically tolerate Botox injections well, notes Mayo Clinic. However, some may request numbing of the injection sites with cream, cold spray or injections prior to the procedure.
During the procedure, a thin needle injects Botox into the muscles or skin of the patient, explains Mayo Clinic. The doctor normally performs the procedure in the office, and the number of injections vary depending on the extent of the problem and the size of the area requiring treatment.
Once the procedure is over, patients may continue daily activities but should avoid massaging or rubbing the injected areas, as it may cause the toxin to spread to other locations. Results of Botox injections typically begin to show within a few days of the procedure, advises Mayo Clinic. The results may last from three months to a year.
Common side effects of Botox injections include bruising and swelling at the injection site, flu-like symptoms and headaches, states MayoClinic. Improperly placed injections may cause cockeyed eyebrows and crooked smiles, eyelid droop, excessive tearing, or dry eyes. Potentially dangerous side effects that require medical attention include vision problems, muscle weakness and loss of bladder control. Difficulty swallowing, speaking and breathing are also dangerous side effects that require medical attention.