Botox is by far the most popular cosmetic procedure in the U.S. and is certainly one of the most popular treatments here at Dermatology Realm! Because of its long history and the extensive amount of research involved with it, Botox is actually one of the safest and most effective products available for helping your face look more refreshed and relaxed. There’s a reason why people keep coming back to Botox again and again! Let’s take a closer look at what this treatment is, how it works, and all the ways it can benefit your appearance—among other things! Keep reading below to learn everything you’ve ever wanted to know about Botox.
What is Botox?
Botox is a compound made with the botulism toxin. Injecting bacteria into your body can sound a little scary, but Botox is used in very controlled doses. As the only FDA approved treatment for moderate to severe crow’s feet and frown lines, Botox has been deemed one of the safest forms of cosmetic surgery, even when it is administered for an extended period of time.
There is very little risk associated with Botox and very few minor side effects possible. With that said, it’s highly important for patients to choose a surgeon, or other licensed medical professional, to administer the Botox injections based on their experience and qualifications. This will ensure that treatments are safely administered and reduces the risk of infections or allergic reactions occurring. Our team has the experience necessary to administer Botox skillfully and safely, resulting in a natural look that isn’t overdone.
How does Botox work?
Since Botox injections are non-invasive, the experience is virtually pain-free! We use very thin needles to inject the compound into a specific area. This can result in some minimal discomfort or a mild stinging sensation initially, but it shouldn’t cause any irritation or inflammation. If you’re worried about discomfort during the procedure, we can apply a topical numbing cream to the area before administering treatment.
Most frown lines and wrinkles are created by the repeated movements certain facial muscles make. Once it’s been injected, Botox binds itself to receptors in the muscle, blocking the transmission of nerve impulses to the specified muscles. This temporarily relaxes them, softening, or eliminating wrinkles in that area.
After treatment is administered, the Botox will kick in within 1-10 days. One session will usually last about 3-4 months, as your body will regenerate new receptors within the muscle during this time. Even though a single treatment won’t last forever, the procedure itself takes less than fifteen minutes! This is convenient for patients with busy schedules since regular daily routines can be resumed almost immediately after we’ve completed the treatment.
What areas can Botox treat? Who is a good candidate?
Botox is most commonly injected into various areas of the face to soften fine lines and wrinkles. It can be used to treat:
- frown lines
- crow’s feet
- forehead creases
- eyebrow asymmetry
- upper and lower lip creases
- marionette lines
It can also be used to:
- elevate or lift the brow
- lengthen the lip to correct a gummy smile
- soften the chin (especially a “peach pit” chin or one with an excessive cleft)
- improve the appearance of new or old facial scars
In the neck and chest region, Botox can minimize:
- horizontal “necklace” creases
- vertical neck bands (“turkey neck”)
- wrinkling of the central mid chest (décolleté)
Adults between the ages of 18 and 65 with moderate to severe frown lines, crow’s feet, or forehead lines may be good candidates for Botox treatment. Most people will respond well to Botox, but it is important to have realistic expectations. Botox is more about maintenance than actively changing a patient’s face—the idea is to keep you looking unaffected by age while leaving the character of your face intact!
Botox can be used at any age, though we are seeing many patients start in their late twenties or early thirties in order to initiate a maintenance protocol early. More than 95% of patients who have Botox injections administered are extremely satisfied with the end results.
Is Botox the same as an injectable filler?
Not at all! Botox impacts the muscles. Filler says it all right in the name—it’s used to fill wrinkles, even out any discrepancies in volume, and can also plump the lips. Here at Dermatology Realm, we offer Juvéderm Injectable Gel to treat wrinkles and improve the look of thin lips, which can be frustrating signs of aging. This treatment can give you a more vibrant and youthful appearance, much like Botox.
Is there any downtime with Botox?
As we previously mentioned, one of the reasons that Botox is so popular is how quick, easy, and effective it is. There’s barely any downtime since the needle marks fade within minutes and don’t leave behind any bruising. Botox also binds to the receptors almost immediately after being injected, so you never need to worry about it moving around once you leave the office. The process is so simple that you can even have it scheduled for your lunch hour!
Are there any side effects with Botox?
Botox consistently ranks number one in non-surgical cosmetic procedures for both men and women. It is FDA-approved and extremely safe; however, as with any cosmetic procedure, there is always a possibility of side effects. The most common include:
- bruising, numbness, discomfort, or pain at the injection site
- temporary eyelid droop (“ptosis”)
- temporary eye problems, such as double or blurred vision, eyelid swelling, etc.
Memphis patients love Botox treatments with Dermatology Realm
The softening effects of Botox can be seen after just one treatment, but many patients continue to visit us on a regular basis in order to maintain the beautiful results Botox offers. Our Botox treatments are ideal for younger patients, whose skin is just beginning to show signs of the aging process, as well as older patients, who have visible fine lines and wrinkles and wish to reduce them.