How Botox Can Help Treat Depression
Millions of people across the United States suffer from depression. Of these, many find they are unable to benefit from traditional antidepressant medications – or that the side effects are just too debilitating to manage on a day-to-day basis.
Now, there’s a new hope: Botox.
In a recent study, Botox injections were found to reduce depressive symptoms by as much as 47%. Even some patients whose conditions were resistant to conventional depression medications reported great improvement after a course of treatment.
Botox Interrupts the Depression “Feedback Loop”
There are many explanations for depression, from genetic factors to brain chemistry and environment. Why would injections help when other interventions have failed? The key is a new understanding of the biofeedback between the face and brain.
When people experience emotions, one of the first things that happens is a change in expression. The expression is caused by the emotion, but also becomes a reaction to it, “amplifying” the feeling. This includes negative feelings like sadness and anxiety.
With Botox, it becomes possible to paralyze some facial muscles responsible for expressions.
This interferes with the “feedback loop” between the face and brain. Patients have reported that, following injections, negative emotions are weaker than before and pass more quickly.
A New Approach for Stubborn Depression Symptoms
It’s important to remember this treatment does not eliminate negative feelings entirely.
People with depression still may feel sadness, and might continue to feel it in similar situations. However, it often becomes much easier to cope with those feelings and to stay focused on life.
Over time, it is believed the brain interprets these new signals from the facial muscles as a lasting, positive change in mood. This may contribute to a long-term lessening of depression.
Although this is a new development, it’s not that surprising: Botox has been found to be helpful for hyperhydrosis and research is continuing into other applications.
When It Comes to Your Treatment, Only Trust the Experts
No matter why one is seeking Botox injections, it’s essential to trust only a trained professional. A medical expert must manage all aspects of the process and inform the patient about precautions: For example, activities to avoid after an injection.
Turtle Creek Medical Center can help people of any background seeking this treatment and many others. To learn more about the depression treatment Dallas residents are turning to, contact us.