When you think of Botox, you might think of the Real Housewives of… anywhere, or anyone else you know that has taken things A Bit Too Far. But did you know that Botox was originally called “sausage poison” and was first cultivated (and is still used for) a wide variety of legit, non-cosmetic medical purposes?
The name Botox is abbreviated from its clinical term “Botulinum Toxin”, and yes, it’s toxic! It was first discovered in Germany in the 1800s when people were falling ill after eating contaminated meat. Since then, scientists have found a way to harness the paralysing effect of the toxin, initially to treat eye spasms in the 70’s and subsequently a wide range of other medical conditions, including;
- Excessive underarm sweating
- Post stroke spasms and stiffness
- Overactive bladder
- Tennis elbow
- Essential tremors
Basically, it’s used for lots of conditions where there are some hyperactive nerves or muscles interfering with someone’s life that need to just chill the eff out. A botox injection treats these ailments by temporarily paralysing the nerve or muscle, so the effect isn’t permanent and usually only lasts 3-6 months.
Although it is a toxin, Botox is actually pretty safe when administered by a licensed professional, but standards vary between countries and states so it is essential to do your homework, as with any medical procedure. And of course, if you want to use it for cosmetic purposes, more power to ya.
Who would have thought that something touted primarily as a cosmetic procedure could have had a long history of so many other uses! What are your thoughts? Too taboo or worth a look?
(Feature image via The Art of Saving Life)