Planning on Getting Botox? Here’s What to Know

Planning on Getting Botox? Here’s What to Know

Staff Writer |Jan 15, 2024

Before the Needle

Although many people have heard about Botox, few people know what it actually is. So, what are Botox injections? Many people would be surprised to learn that it actually is a drug derived from a neurotoxin created by a specific bacterium, the Clostridium botulinum. This is the same toxin that causes botulism, a life-threatening form of food poisoning.

When ingested in its natural form, Botox can cause paralysis that spreads through the body until it eventually works its way to the breathing muscles, causing respiratory failure. This is why it is important to educate yourself before considering Botox injections.

Why Do People Get Botox?

Although this is a toxin, it is safe to use in small doses for medical use. Doctors often use the substance cosmetically.

It is probably best known as an anti-wrinkle agent used to treat fine lines and signs of aging. Most commonly, it is used to treat wrinkles in the neck or face. Some people also get Botox injections to minimize their forehead lines.

In addition to smoothing skin to give it a more youthful appearance, it serves other medical purposes. Some patients use it to treat severe underarm sweating, migraines, uncontrollable blinking, overactive bladder and strabismus (misaligned eyes).

How Does Botox Work?

Botox causes paralysis. While this can be fatal in large, targeted doses, it is the property that helps with treatment. It acts locally, upon the injection site where it will weaken or paralyze targeted muscles.

This is done as the neurotoxin attaches to nerve ending and blocks impulses from coming through. Instead of contracting as normal, the injected tissues will remain relatively frozen. Reducing the pulling of the skin is what makes the skin look more youthful. This signal-blocking property is also assisted with the other medical applications of Botox.

It is important to realize that these are not the same as a filler.

How Long Does Botox Last?

The effects of Botox do not last forever. After a while, the signals will begin to pass through again. Procedures are expected to have a visual effect that lasts three to six months. Botox will not lose its effect overnight. Rather, you will experience a gradual decline in results as the muscles slowly regain their movement.

The effects of your first session will wear off faster than the later sessions. Your first session is expected to last around three months where the later sessions will gradually last up to six months.

Is Botox Safe?

Under controlled medical environments, Botox injection procedures are considered low-risk. Most procedures are carried out safely and effectively with little side effects.

The side effects one does experience are normally what is expected from any sort of injection procedure. This would be some temporary redness, bleeding or bruising at the injection site. In rare cases, one may experience a headache in the first two days after the procedure or temporary drooping.

With this being said, there are certain situations where you should avoid getting Botox injections. You should not undergo treatments if you:

  • Are 65 years of age or older, or under 18 years old.
  • Have breathing problems.
  • Have bleeding problems.
  • Are allergic to or have sensitivities to Botox products.

Be sure to talk to your doctor about any medications or supplements you are currently taking as there may be some interactions that could be dangerous. If you immediately experience signs of an allergic reaction upon the treatment, seek medical help immediately.

To reduce any of the potential complications, it is important that you thoroughly research the performing physician. You need to make sure you are going to someone who knows what they are doing and has an adequate environment to perform hygienically and legally. It is not worth the risk to seek other methods.

Does Botox Hurt?

Botox procedures use very tiny needles. While injections are associated with some pain, the size of the needles keeps this pain at a minimum. Botox injections are generally preceded by some sort of anesthetic treatment to numb the pain. This is often done with a topical anesthetic cream or a cold pack. Most people report minimal to no pain at all.

The Cost of Botox

The cost of Botox will vary greatly depending on the specifications of your procedure. Some facilities will charge you by the area covered, but more often they charge you per unit of Botox used.

On average, you will pay about $20 per unit. As the average treatment is about 20 to 60 units on average, you will likely pay between $500 and $800. The number of units used in a session will vary greatly depending on the space that you want to be covered. The bigger the area, the more units you will need to pay to achieve results.

When it comes to cosmetic procedures, insurance will likely not pay for any of the costs. You can talk with your insurance provider to find out if they offer financial compensation for non-cosmetic procedures.

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Everything You Need to Know About Colic

Staff Writer | January 15, 2024

What is Colic? Colic is a rather common condition found in many infants. The temporary ailment often appears after a couple of months of being born. Although the disease is not lethal or dangerous for a baby, it is not pleasant either. Although researchers do not believe the condition has any permanent effects on an infant’s health, this does not mean that parents will not want to seek a diagnosis. Who is at Risk for Colic? This disease can affect any baby, however, some maternal behaviors during pregnancy can contribute to a heightened chance of diagnosis. These behaviors include: Substance abuse: including illegal drug use and alcohol. Smoking: anything with tobacco. Insufficient weight gain: more common in teen pregnancy. Medical complications: such as blood pressure problems, diabetes or heart conditions. Please keep in mind that no baby is immune to colic. The disease often develops in the absence of any risk factors. Colic Signs and Symptoms Unfortunately, a baby cannot tell you when they are feeling upset. Instead, you must learn how to identify your infant’s signs of distress. [youmaylike] There are several things that are easily recognizable as something being wrong. Consider going to a doctor if your baby exhibits some of the following symptoms. Crying Fits Crying is a baby’s key method of communication. It is their way to let you know something is up. As any parent would tell you, crying is an activity infants do a lot of. Whether they saw something that startled them or needed a diaper change. Although it may not seem like it sometimes, babies cry for a reason. Unfortunately, sometimes their reasons for crying are not obvious. When there seems to be no visible cause for their distress, there is sometimes something deeper going on. If these seemingly random episodes of crying happen regularly around the same time every evening or night, colic might be to blame. Other times colic-induced crying will likely take place are during feedings or sleeping. Tense Posture Signs of distress do not always have to be loud. You can tell a lot about a baby through their body language. Abnormally tense posture is sometimes a sign that something is wrong. A tightened tummy, “fetal position,” or tightened fists can also be an indication of colic. Excessive Flatulence Farting is a perfectly healthy occurrence in any infant. What is not normal is when your baby cries while it passes gas. If your baby is farting excessively or crying during it, talk to their pediatrician. Keep in mind that all infants experience colic a little differently. It may be possible that your baby only faces mild symptoms. It is also important to recognize that these symptoms are rather vague. Colic is most often diagnosed after the possibility of other maladies is eliminated. Babies demonstrating these behaviors may be experiencing a more serious medical condition than colic. Contact a trained medical physician immediately if you ever believe there is something wrong with your child. What Causes Colic? Sadly, there is no concrete cause of colic. This does not mean that experts have no idea what is behind this illness. Many researchers believe that flatulence or indigestion plays the role of colic in infants. These abnormalities could be due to early developmental factors of an infant’s digestive system. For instance, discomfort may occur because their gut is sensitive and immature. Many of the colic symptoms seem to mimic those of lactose intolerance, urging some doctors to question whether there is an intolerance to the ingredients of breast milk or formula. Unfortunately, studies have yet to confidently support these claims and there seems to be no difference in colic development between infants who are breastfed and those who are fed with formula. Colic Treatment Whether or not you treat colic depends on the severity of the symptoms. If you are dealing with some of the more severe symptoms, there are some solutions you can try. Eliminating Cow Milk Depending on how you choose to feed your infant, this can mean one of two things. If you bottle feed, you should look into some hypoallergenic formulas. If you breastfeed, begin a dairy-free diet. This is not guaranteed to help, so if you do not notice any improvements, feel free to go back to your normal lifestyle. Drops You should never give your baby anything that is not first approved by a pediatrician. If you believe that your infant needs to have some help in managing their colic symptoms, consider consulting your pediatrician about simethicone or lactose drops. Simethicone drops help reduce the amount of trapped wind while lactose drops help break down enzymes found in milk. As the condition is not shown to cause any short or long-term deficits, it is often recommended to just wait it out. Colic is only a temporary condition that will go away with a little patience and time.

Experiencing Frequent Urination or Leaking? You Might Have OAB

Staff Writer | January 15, 2024

How You Can Stop the Leakage Overactive bladder (OAB) refers to symptoms rather than a disease. It is used to describe the phenomenon of people experiencing urinary issues. Some products that help include Comfort Medical and PureWick. Treatments for an Overactive Bladder Treatments will vary depending on what exactly is wrong. Most cases of OAB do not require invasive intervention. Some of the most common treatments recommended are: Lifestyle changes: Introducing some exercise routines in your life can help strengthen muscles. Plus, it can fight obesity, which can help reduce the chances of suffering from OAB. Some experts recommend that you try to put your bladder on a schedule. By training your bladder to know what you can and cannot do, you can shape your behavior. Some also recommend “bladder training,” where you try to delay urination when you feel the urge to grow in increasing durations to strengthen your ability to “hold it”. Using protective, absorbent padding can be a last resort if you cannot adjust your behavior. This will allow you to avoid embarrassing accidents. Medication: Some prescription medications can be sued to help strengthen areas of the body or “relax” your bladder. Some common medications include: tolterodine, darifenacin, fesoterodine and mirabegron. Botox: Botox does not just flatten our wrinkles. Small injections of Botox into bladder tissue can offer temporary relief from bladder problems. It sometimes has the side effects of increased UITs and urinary retention. Nerve stimulation: Percutaneous tibial nerve stimulation has also been shown to help with OAB. It works by sending electrical signals from a nerve in your leg to nerves connected with bladder control. Surgery: For those suffering from severe symptoms, surgery is the last option. It can involve increasing the size of the bladder or replacing the bladder with a surgically constructed replacement. Comfort Medical vs. PureWick Comfort Medical provides catheters inserted into the urethra to manage urinary incontinence internally, whereas PureWick offers an external catheter solution using an absorbent wick for non-invasive urine collection. Getting a Diagnosis Anyone can suffer from OAB. Unfortunately, many adults are too embarrassed to ask for help or do not realize their conditions are treatable. Roughly 30% of men and 40% of women in the U.S. suffer from overactive bladder symptoms. While no one is immune to these problems, there are some conditions that increase your chances of suffering from OAB. These can include: Brain damage Hormonal changes Pelvic muscle weakness Urinary tract infections (UTI) Taking certain medications Stoke, multiple sclerosis (MS) or other conditions impacting the central nervous system (CNS) Signs and Symptoms of OAB Some people fail to realize that their bathroom habits are not normal. Familiarizing yourself with the symptoms can allow you to better recognize the signs of OAB which will get you one step closer to treatment. Those suffering from an overactive bladder may experience the following: Urgency: OAB’s main symptom is that sufferers experience strong, sudden urges of needing to go to the bathroom. Typically, the need to go to the bathroom will build up over time. While it is easy to ignore these feelings until you have to go, when all you feel is a sudden urge to go immediately or risk having an accident, there may be something wrong. Leaking: Suffering from something called “urge incontinence” is rather common when you suffer from an overactive bladder. It means that sometimes during these sudden urges, you will leak a little urine. You must distinguish it from people suffering from stress urinary incontinence (SUI). Rather than leak during an episode of sudden urges, those suffering from SUI leak during physical activities which would strain the region including sneezing, laughing or stretching. Frequent urination: Frequently needing to use the bathroom is not always a sign that you drank too much. If you constantly need to go to the bathroom a lot throughout the day (especially to the point where it begins to interfere with your daily life), you may be suffering from OAB. Waking up to pee: The same can be said for those who have to wake up to go to the bathroom. A fully functioning bladder is normally able to hold urine while someone is sleeping. If you frequently have to get up during the night because you need to use the bathroom, you should talk to your doctor about OAB. [youmaylike] Causes of an Overactive Bladder Because OAB is not one disease, but rather an umbrella term to characterize specific urinary symptoms, physicians will need to investigate the underlying cause of your problems. The origin of problems usually arises from areas in the urinary tract itself. Areas of the body likely responsible for an overactive bladder include the following: Kidneys. Bladder. Ureters. Urethra. Sphincter muscle. In Conclusion Talk to a trained physician if you believe you or a loved one may be suffering from an overactive bladder. They will be able to offer expert advice on how to handle your case. This is not the same as someone who suffers from an inability to control their bladder from emptying on its own.

What You Need to Know About Hyperkalemia

Staff Writer | January 15, 2024

What is Hyperkalemia? Hyperkalemia is the medical term for when you experience high potassium levels in your blood. In terms of numbers, a healthy individual will have between 3.6mmol/L and 5.2mmol/L in their body. Anything higher than that is officially classified as hyperkalemia. Between 5.3mmol/L and 6.0mmol/L is mild hyperkalemia. Between 6.1mmol/L and 7.0 mmol/L is moderate hyperkalemia. Above 7mmol/L is severe hyperkalemia. Why is Too Much Potassium Harmful? Potassium is healthy for you in the right doses. Your body needs it to function properly. It is an incredibly important substance that plays a vital role in your nerves and muscle cells. This means that you need it for your heart to work. Like with anything else, too much of a good thing is not good. The more common form of hyperkalemia only rears mild to moderate symptoms. The most extreme severities of this condition can result in death. Symptoms of Hyperkalemia Generally, until your hyperkalemia is severe, you may not even experience or recognize any of the symptoms. As your levels soar to dangerous heights, you may experience one or more of the following symptoms: Muscle weakness or pain. Your muscles may feel tender or even painful. It may feel as though you just finished an intense workout. Fatigue. Despite getting adequate sleep, you may feel sluggish and tired the entire day or you may be too weak to function. Nausea. An upset stomach may or may not be accompanied by some vomiting. This is a common sign of hyperkalemia. Breathing problems. You may find it difficult to take deep breaths or find yourself forced to gasp for air. Irregular heartbeat. Your heart may beat funnily or feel weird in your chest. This is always a symptom to bring up to your doctor immediately. Chest pains. Chest pains ranging from mild to severe are a common result of hyperkalemia. In the most extreme cases, hyperkalemia left untreated can cause cardiac arrest and death. What Causes Hyperkalemia? There are several known causes of hyperkalemia, which range from medical disorders to lifestyle habits. Hyperkalemia is known to have many causes. These include: Kidney Disease The main function of a kidney is that it filters everything in your body. When there is something wrong with your kidneys, it can mess up all sorts of vitamin levels in your body. Potassium is just one of them. Heart Disease Heart disease results in a variety of factors that make it more likely to have problems with your potassium levels. Hormone Imbalances Having abnormally low amounts of aldosterone can result in potassium problems. This can happen due to a variety of conditions, including hypoaldosteronism and congenital adrenal hyperplasia. Diabetes A lack of insulin may be the culprit behind enhanced potassium levels. This is something that would be more likely to occur if diabetes is undermanaged (or undiagnosed). [youmaylike] Medications Side effects of certain medications could cause potassium levels to rise. You may be surprised to see that some common medications will do this. Non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory drugs, such as ibuprofen and naproxen, will do it. Some of the other medications that can do this are heparin, mannitol, beta-blockers, angiotensin inhibitors, calcium blockers, and cyclosporine. Diet Medications are not the only way to introduce potassium to the body. There are lots of foods that can lead to heightened potassium levels. Many of these foods are healthy, but to a person at risk for hyperkalemia, they can be dangerous if not eaten in responsible quantities. There is also the chance that you are a victim of pseudo hyperkalemia. As the name suggests, you do not have any potassium problems. Sometimes due to faulty equipment, you will get a wrong reading. Hyperkalemia Treatment To determine how to treat hyperkalemia, it is important that you first identify the cause of it in yourself. Getting advice from a licensed medical physician is the best way to determine your treatments. Diet Change Changing your diet can do wonders for your health. If you battle hyperkalemia, consider limiting your intake of foods rich in potassium like cucumbers, pumpkins, potatoes, bananas, grapefruit, oranges, eggplants and peas. Intravenous Calcium or Insulin and Glucose Medical injections are an efficient and fast technique to lower calcium levels. When diet alone is not enough, these can drop your potassium levels to a safer place in a pinch. Albuterol Doctors may also administer albuterol alone or in addition to other treatments. Unfortunately, this does not work for everyone. Changing Medications If a certain medication is causing dangerous, unwanted side effects, you may want to talk to your doctor about switching.