Scientific research varies on whether Botox® is safe for use during pregnancy without harming the pregnant mother or the fetus. One study exploring the effects of pregnancy found that the treatment had no negative effects on the mother or child. Nearly all pregnancies in this study were carried to term and resulted in healthy babies.
Still, some medical professionals recommend avoiding using Botox® while expecting. Each pregnancy is different, though, and can carry its own risks, so the best way to decide what is right for you is to speak to your health care provider. A health care provider in your area can explain your best, most effective treatment options throughout your pregnancy.
. If you are adding to your family and are pregnant or are considering becoming pregnant, you might be concerned about whether Botox® is safe during pregnancy.
What Is Botox®?
According to Cleveland Clinic research, Botox® is a widely known brand of botulinum toxin injections on the market. Botox® treatments are strategically placed injections of botulinum toxins. Botox® has been used for years by women who want to reduce the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines on their faces. While primarily known for its use in cosmetic treatments, it also has various medical purposes.
Botox® Cosmetic Uses
From a cosmetic standpoint, it can be injected into facial and other muscles to smooth out wrinkles and fine lines. To enhance patient appearance and offer rejuvenation, Botox® can be used to treat:
Botox® Medical Uses
From a medical standpoint, it can also be used to effectively treat and relieve migraine headaches and the following medical conditions:
- Crossed eyes
- Eyelid twitching
- Excessive sweating
- Overactive bladder
- Chronic muscle contractions
- Pediatric and adult spasticity
- Uncontrollable eye movements
Many rejuvenating therapies, including Dysport® or Botox®, can help you look and feel better. It can also be used as part of a pain management plan. Your health care provider will clarify the results you can expect from one or multiple injection sessions.
What Side Effects Have Been Reported With Botox® Use?
FDA guidelines indicate Botox® is generally safe for use in most patients. When you seek medical or aesthetic treatment with Botox®, inform your doctor of your pregnancy. In some patients, the following side effects have been reported:
- Dry mouth
- Vision trouble
- Allergic reactions
- Headache and neck pain
- Discomfort at the injection site
Some individuals should avoid the use of Botox®, including people allergic to the protein in cow’s milk, who have been diagnosed with a neuromuscular disease, have droopy eyelids, or weakened facial muscles. Whether pregnant or not, you should report any unusual or troubling side effects of your treatment to your doctor right away.
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How Does Botox® Work?
As the Mayo Clinic explains, Botox® works by blocking chemical signals from reaching certain nerves. It typically causes the injected muscles to contract and relax. Botox® injections stop your body from releasing the chemical acetylcholine, which will weaken or paralyze the treated muscle by preventing contractions.
A medical professional should administer Botox® as it is created by bacteria and can be poisonous in high doses. Botox® is generally considered a safe and effective option, although some doctors suggest refraining from use during pregnancy. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) guidelines also recommend suspending use while breastfeeding.
When administered effectively, its effects can usually be seen right away and can last for many months. Your health care provider will review your treatment plan — which is customized to meet your specific needs — and recommend a treatment schedule.
Before Treatment With Botox®
Botox® injections are generally pain-free. They can be administered as an outpatient treatment in your doctor’s office, and you might be offered anesthetic cream or ice to numb the treatment area. Treatment requires multiple injections based on several factors. Your doctor will explain each step of the treatment and the number of injections you will need. They also will ensure you are comfortable before beginning the series of injections.
During Treatment With Botox®
As your procedure progresses, your doctor will check your comfort level to ensure you are doing well. They will administer the number of injections prescribed for you, which will depend on your medical history, the size of your treatment area, and the timing between visits.
After Treatment With Botox®
Once your treatment is complete, you will be advised not to rub or massage the treatment site for a minimum of 24 hours. In most cases, there is no downtime, but you may have periodic follow-up visits to monitor your progress, particularly after a first-time treatment.
Learn More About Our Rejuvenating Therapies
Are you expecting or anticipating starting a family and wondering if Botox® is safe during pregnancy? If you are concerned about how pregnancy can work with Botox® injections, we can help. We offer more than regenerative therapies — we are also committed to whole-patient care.
Contact one of our Anti-Aging & Regenerative Associates team members to learn more about the services we provide and the best treatments for you.