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How Long Does It Take for Botox injection to Work?

It is not uncommon to see botulinum toxin injections on social media these days. The treatment is popularly used to address aging and its symptoms. This article guides how long it takes for botulinum toxin injection to work. 

Botulinum toxin injection deals with medical conditions by weakening the muscles. When used for cosmetic purposes, it helps deal with signs of aging, leaving the skin smooth. It is common to hear about botulinum toxin injection work these days, and many people are considering the treatment. One of the most asked questions about the treatment is how long it takes for the anti-wrinkle injection to work. Like other fillers, the anti-wrinkle injection’s longevity is subject to age, metabolism, and the type of injection given.  

Botulinum Toxin Injection and Its Uses

Botulinum toxin is an anti-wrinkle injection. Botulinum toxin is derived from a bacterium called clostridium botulinum. The toxin has several medical and cosmetic uses. Nepal &Jeong (2020) explained that it treats several medical conditions, such as excessive sweating, headaches, and bladder symptoms. Nigam & Nigam (2010) demonstrated that it is used effectively to deal with aging symptoms by reducing facial lines and smoothing wrinkles. The toxin is injected into the muscles under the skin and works by freezing and relaxing the muscles. Common areas treated using botulinum toxin injections include; forehead creases, crow’s feet, laugh lines, and frown lines. It is also used to smooth out neck and cleavage wrinkles. Botulinum toxin is best used in dynamic areas and is associated with repetitive muscle movements and facial expressions. 

Botulinum Toxin Injection Procedure

The client has a consultation meeting with the cosmetic doctor before the procedure. The doctor will discuss the needs and desires of the client. The cosmetic doctor will then assess the client and determine the right treatment. It is also important to discuss any medical conditions and concerns one might have. The patient’s area of interest during the injection is cleaned and treated with a topical anesthetic. The cosmetic doctor then uses a thin needle to inject the botulinum toxic into the muscles of the space intended. One can be asked to move the muscles to help locate the best place to inject the toxin. The procedure takes about 30 minutes to complete. 

How Long Does It Take for Botulinum Toxin Injection to Work?

Results are seen after three days; it takes up to three days for the botulinum to start working and a week or more for the full effects to be seen. It is good to have realistic expectations and patience to give the treatment time to take effect. 

Why Does Botulinum Toxin Injection Take Time to Work?

According to Hallett (2015), botulinum toxin injection into the muscle stays in the extracellular space before the nerve terminals take it. It takes time to reach the cellular level of the muscle to block the neurotransmitters in the nerve, causing the freezing effect. This uptake depends on the amount of toxin used and the temperature in the muscle area. It is important to get the treatment done by a professional with extensive knowledge of muscles and how botulinum toxin injection works. 

How Long Does Botulinum Toxin Injection Last?

When getting the treatment, one must know that the effects are not permanent. The results show full within a week of the treatment. Satriyasa (2019) noted that these results last around three to six months. One then needs to go for treatment to get more botulinum toxin injection. Results last differently depending on the amount of botulinum toxin used and the frequency of the injections. A cosmetic doctor will advise the patient on the dosage needed and when they can get more treatment after the initial one. 

Frequently Asked Questions about Botulinum Toxin Injection

Who Can Get Botulinum toxin injection?

Botulinum toxin injection is suitable for any adult who wants to address issues with their dynamic muscles. Clients with an infection on the injection site should not seek the procedure. Witmanowski&Błochowiak (2020) mentioned that pregnant and nursing mothers are also advised against the procedure. Patients with medical conditions should consult a cosmetic doctor before seeking treatment. 

Where to Find a Medical Provider?

It is good for a client to search for a board-certified clinic. Depending on the location, one can get different areas. One can also ask for referrals from their health provider. It is advised to check the clinic online for reviews and go for a consultation to enquire about their treatments and costs. Looking for a certified cosmetic doctor with extensive knowledge and experience in botulinum toxin injection treatment is good. 

Is the Botulinum toxin injection Treatment Safe?

Botulinum toxin is safe when injected by a certified provider. Side effects, however, are not uncommon. Satriyasa (2019) mentioned that these include redness, swelling, and bruising at the injection site. These will go down within days and can be avoided using thinner needles. Also, headaches, flu-like symptoms, and nausea are side effects reported with botulinum toxin injection. These effects gradually resolve in a few days. Sometimes, it can lead to the drooping of the eyelids, known as ptosis. This can remain for several weeks, but cosmetic doctors can prescribe medications to deal with it. 

How Many Injections Will I Get?

Botulinum toxin injection treatment is customized to meet a patient’s goals and needs. When one meets with the cosmetic professional, they will discuss the desired outcome and determine an appropriate treatment that will cater to the patient’s needs. The cosmetic doctor will determine the number of injections needed and inform the patient, including the total cost. They will also discuss with the patient aftercare tips to ensure a smooth recovery and follow-up treatment. It is good to leave the clinic with all the information one needs.


Botox, medically known as botulinum toxin, is widely used to reduce wrinkles and fine lines on dynamic muscles. The treatment is quick and involves botulinum injected into the area’s muscles. Results take time; the toxin must reach the cellular part of the muscles and relax them. After the injections, it can take up to three days for one to start seeing initial effects and several weeks to see the final results. Botulinum toxin is not permanent and can last up to six months, after which one needs follow-up treatment. 


Hallett, M. (2015). Explanation of timing of botulinum neurotoxin effects, onset and duration, and clinical ways of influencing them. Toxicon, 107, 64-67.

Nepal, M. R., &Jeong, T. C. (2020). Alternative methods for testing botulinum toxin: Current status and future perspectives. Biomolecules & Therapeutics, 28(4), 302.

Nigam, P. K., & Nigam, A. (2010). Botulinum toxin. Indian journal of dermatology, 55(1), 8.

Satriyasa, B. K. (2019). Botulinum toxin (Botulinum toxin injection ) A for reducing the appearance of facial wrinkles: a literature review of clinical use and pharmacological aspect. Clinical, cosmetic and investigational dermatology, 12, 223.

Witmanowski, H., &Błochowiak, K. (2020). The whole truth about botulinum toxin–a review. Advances in Dermatology and Allergology/PostępyDermatologiiiAlergologii, 37(6), 853-861.

Monika Wasserman