BOTOX is one of the world’s most famous brand names. It has been around for decades treating conditions such as involuntary eyelid spasms, but in 2002 when the FDA approved BOTOX for treatment of wrinkles on the upper third of the face, it became famous.
There’s a reason — it works. BOTOX relaxes the muscles that form wrinkles around the eyes, between the brows, and on the forehead. We offer BOTOX at Columbus Women’s Care.
What Is BOTOX?
BOTOX is made from the botulinum toxin type A, the same bacteria that cause botulism. But scientists studying the bacteria in the 1950s discovered an interesting phenomenon — when a very minute amount of the botulinum toxin was injected into a muscle it temporarily stopped the muscle from contracting. This proved useful when addressing certain conditions where muscles needed to be controlled, such as eyelid spasms. Those uses have expanded to treatment of migraines, excessive underarm sweating, even overactive bladders.
But when BOTOX was approved for aesthetic use, things got crazy. Every year since 2002, it has been the world’s most popular cosmetic procedure, surgical or non-surgical, worldwide.
How Does BOTOX Work?
BOTOX is known clinically as a neuromodulator. When injected into a muscle, the botulinum toxin blocks the nerve messages sent from the muscle to the brain. This stops the muscle from contracting. Certain types of wrinkles, known as “dynamic wrinkles,” form when we contract our facial muscles when making expressions such as smiling, squinting, showing surprise, and the like. Over time, as our skin loses some elasticity, these expressions create wrinkles such as crow’s feet. When injected into the muscle that creates a wrinkle, BOTOX stops the muscle from contracting, so the wrinkle no longer forms.
Who Is a Good Candidate for BOTOX Injections?
Pretty much anyone over the age of 35 or 40 is a good candidate for BOTOX. The question is — what kind of wrinkles do you have? If your wrinkles show themselves at all times, similar to a wrinkled shirt, these are called “static” wrinkles. BOTOX does not affect these wrinkles. Static wrinkles are treated with dermal fillers such as Restylane. BOTOX works on dynamic wrinkles that develop when we make expressions. These wrinkles occur on the upper third of the face, the expressive area of the face.
How Long Does a BOTOX Session Take?
BOTOX was the original “lunchtime procedure” because a session takes just 10-15 minutes. It is injected with a very tiny needle, so the procedure isn’t painful and doesn’t require topical numbing.
What Areas Can Be Treated with BOTOX?
The FDA cleared BOTOX for cosmetic use on the upper third of the face. BOTOX is effective for erasing crow’s feet around the outside of the eyes, the vertical lines that form between the eyebrows (the “11s”), and lines on the forehead.
How Long Do BOTOX Results Last?
BOTOX doesn’t work immediately. It takes about four days for the injectable to block the nerve messages from the muscle. From there, it lasts about four months in most patients. Some patients show results for up to six months. The duration can be affected by the individual patient’s metabolism. When the body eventually absorbs the now-inert BOTOX, the muscle will begin to contract again and the wrinkles will return. This is the time to return to the Women’s Care Center for another session.
BOTOX vs Dermal Fillers
As mentioned above, BOTOX works on wrinkles that form from muscle contractions under the skin. These are dynamic wrinkles. Dermal fillers work entirely differently. As their name implies, fillers are injected beneath a wrinkle and they “fill” in the depression, pushing the skin back upward. Dermal fillers are used on static wrinkles caused by sun damage and natural skin aging, plus they return volume to areas such as the cheeks and the lips.
Side Effects of BOTOX
BOTOX has been injected tens of millions of times around the world with very few reactions. The main possible problem comes if BOTOX is injected by an inexperienced injector. If BOTOX is injected into an incorrect muscle, it can cause issues such as a droopy eyelid. That’s why it’s very important to have injections by experts in facial anatomy who have extensive experience, such as the team at Columbus Women’s Care.
Otherwise, the main issues after injections are slight swelling and redness at the injection sites. These usually resolve themselves in a day.
It is important for patients to refrain from rubbing their injection sites for the first 24 hours after their injections. Rubbing the sites can cause the BOTOX to move to an unintended muscle.
How Much Does BOTOX Cost?
BOTOX is priced by the unit. Your cost depends on how many units you need. We’ll give you an idea of how much your likely cost will be beforehand.
Xeomin and Dysport
The name sounds scary so most people refer to these as neuromodulators or….”Botox”. The family of neuromodulators work by temporarily blocking acetylcholine receptors at the neuromuscular junction. On average these muscle relaxing effects last 4 months HOWEVER some people will metabolize product faster or slower than others.
There are 3 major types of neuromodulators made by three different companies in the US and we carry all three. All three of these substances are from the serotype Botulinum A. There are 7 serotypes but only A is used in aesthetics. This is important because some of the other serotypes can run the risk of developing antibodies in patients at higher doses like those doses used for underarm sweating.
- Botox (Onabotulinumtoxin-A)
- Dysport (Abobotulinumtoxin-A)
- Xeomin (Incobotulinumtoxin-A)
The difference between these three forms of neuromodulators relates to their molecular weight and presence of protein (albumin). Those people who have severe egg allergies should not use these products. Some patients just have a preference for one product over another. Talk to your injector based on your preference and needs.