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Can Botox Treat Depression?

Botox relaxes frown lines like a champion.


It’s a miracle drug for 11’s, crows feet, bunny nose lines and horizontal neck wrinkles.


Botox can also be used clinically for:

  • Migraines

  • Muscle spasms

  • Excessive sweating

  • Incontinence

  • And more


Woman being prepared for Botox treatment

Can Botox Treat Depression?


Almost a decade ago, clinicians started noticing that cosmetic Botox injections seemed to ease depression for their patients. They originally thought that by easing severe frown lines Botox disrupted a feedback loop that reinforces negative emotions and, therefore, lowered reports of depression in patients.


Since 2014, studies researching this effect have found that Botox can reduce symptoms of depression.

Anecdotal research also suggests that popular forehead patches like Frownies can be beneficial for treating depression, as well.


“ … recipients [of Frownies] reported fewer instances of feeling sadness due to the prevention of ‘psychomotor’ frowning. Both of these applications, however, are still not fully confirmed nor approved by the FDA ...”

New Research Shows


In 2020 a Scientific Reports research team drilled into some results from an FDA Adverse Event Reporting System from patients who received Botox.

They discovered that patients who received Botox injections — at six different sites, not just in the forehead — reported depression significantly less often than the patients receiving other types of treatments.


“These findings suggest that the antidepressant effect of BoNT is significant, and, surprisingly, is observed for a broad range of injection sites.”

Because this was discovered using secondary research, more research is needed to determine how Botox acts as an antidepressant.


Botox Syringe without Needle

Why Does Botox Work for Depression?


Researchers have hypothesized that:


  1. Botox could be transported to the regions of the central nervous systems involved in mood and emotions.

  2. Botox is used to treat chronic conditions that may contribute to depression. In relieving the underlying problem, Botox may relieve depression indirectly.


Either way, a new, safe, simple treatment for depression is at hand.


Women in Office with Migraine or Depression

Depression Treatments Today


“The World Health Organization estimates that more than 264 million worldwide experience depression.”

Depression is currently treated with:

  1. Psychotherapy

  2. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors

  3. Dopamine-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors and/or serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors.


Still, these approaches don’t work for nearly one-third of patients. Clinicians and researchers are actively exploring other therapeutic options, including Botox injections.


For more severe instances of chronic depression, consult your medical provider first.


To Schedule a consultation with one of our nurse injectors, click the Book Now button above.


Beauty at the Lake



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