While Botox is commonly used for cosmetic purposes, doctors say the reasoning behind the treatment for depression may not be what you expect.
“We don’t believe it has anything to do with looks,” says researcher Dr. Eric Finzi of Chevy Chase Cosmetic Center.
Rather, he says it’s because facial expressions are part of the circuit of the brain related to mood.
Botox May Have a New Use: Treating Depression
A recent study looked at treating depression with Botox. Read More
One doctor is using Botox to treat depression
Botox is commonly used to hide the signs of aging, but Dr. Eric Finzi, a dermatological surgeon is using it to treat his patients with depression. Read More
Botox, Cough Syrup, And An Anesthetic Are All Being Tested As Antidepressants
Pharma companies are looking at old drugs — including a common cough suppressant, an opiate addiction treatment, and even Botox — for new ways to treat depression.
Despite the dozens of prescription drugs on the market for treating depression, up to half of depressed people can’t find relief.
That’s an enormous market opportunity: millions of people who need daily treatment for a chronic condition. But after years of expensive failures trying to develop new antidepressants from scratch, many companies have largely lost interest. Read More
Dr. Eric Finzi and Dr. Norman Rosenthal’s research study findings featured in The Science of Smiling by Andrew Merle for Huffington Post Healthy Living
When we are happy, our natural response is to smile. But if you flip that around, does the reverse hold true? When we smile, is our natural response then to be happy?
Science says yes.
In fact, even faking or forcing a smile reduces stress and makes you happier….
…Another study looked at the effect of facial expression on depression. The experimenters, Eric Finzi (cosmetic dermatologist) and Norman Rosenthal (professor of psychiatry at Georgetown Medical School) worked with 74 subjects who all had major depression, and either gave them a Botox injection between the eyebrows that prevented frowning, or a placebo saline injection that did not affect the facial muscles.
The findings showed that, six weeks after the injection, 52 percent of the non-frowning Botox group showed a reduction in their depression, compared to only a 15 percent improvement rate for the placebo group. The results indicate that putting on a happy face actually makes you happier.
It seems that the simple act of a physical smile, authentic or not, tricks your brain into thinking you’re actually happy. Smiling also triggers us to think back to joyful memories, further improving mood.
In addition to lifting mood and reducing stress, other research has shown that people who smile are thought to be more friendly and likeable, and smiling actually makes those around you cheerier as well.
All of this shows that the old sayings actually deliver great advice — it’s time to turn that frown upside down, grin and bear it, and say cheese!
For more insight in to the study findings READ Dr. Eric Finzi’s Book, Face of Emotion: How Botox Affects Our Mood and Relationships
Forbes.com’s Matthew Herper, a reporter on the Pharma and Healthcare beat, covered the recent annual meeting of the American Psychiatric Association in Toronto and wrote about the collective data findings on Botox to treat depression. Herper writes, “the analysis of the data published so far presented here at the American Psychiatric Association in Toronto seem to support the idea that Botox injections in the face can ease depressed mood.” Read more.
NBC News Today Show correspondent Tom Costello interviews Dr. Eric Finzi and two Botox to treat depression research study participants about the unbelievable treatment for depression.
Writer Taffy Brodesser-Akner tries Botox to treat her depression and shares her story with readers of Pacific Standard magazine in the July 2014 issue.