What is Botox (Botulinum Toxin)?
Botox® is the trade name for Botulinum Toxin, a nerve toxin in the form of a purified protein. It works when injected into the muscles by blocking the transmission of nerve signals to the muscle (motor nerve endings); the toxin relaxes the muscle which relaxes the wrinkles caused by the muscle activity.
The areas typically treated with Botulinum Toxin (Botox) for wrinkles are the forehead, between the eyes (glabellar region), around the corners of the eyes (crow’s feet) and around the lips (smokers lines or gummy smile). There is no loss of sensation. Once the motor nerve endings are interrupted, the muscle cannot contract, causing wrinkles in the skin to smooth. The effects of Botulinum Toxin (Botox) last approximately three to four months; then you will need another treatment. Botulinum Toxin (Botox) has important clinical applications in facial pain and bruxism (excessive grinding or jaw clenching) cases for patients with chronic TMJ (Temporo-Mandibular Joint Dysfunction) and oro-facial pain. Botulinum Toxin (Botox) is also used to complement esthetic dentistry as a minimally invasive alternative to surgery.
Botulinum Toxin Uses
Botulinum Toxin (Botox) is used esthetically to decrease the appearance of aging by reducing muscle movement. Areas of treatment include; the glabellar area (the 11’s/frown lines between the eyes), frontalis muscles (forehead lines), crow’s feet, chin dimples, radial lip lines (smoker’s lines) and nose lines. Botulinum Toxin can also be used to reduce the muscle mass in the masseters (jawline) for a slimming facial esthetic result. Receiving Botulinum Toxin is quick and there’s no need for anesthesia
or downtime. The injections are made using a very fine needle and are virtually painless. Generally, results are visible within two to ten days. To reduce the possibility of bruising/swelling, it is recommended to avoid alcohol for at least 24 hours and aspirin/anti-inflammatory medications for a period of two weeks prior to the procedure. As always, consult your physician before stopping any medications.
The most common side effects of Botulinum Toxin injections are bruising, redness, and swelling. Other, rare side effects are possible and will be reviewed by your treating physician. To avoid adverse reactions/results, do not manipulate the treated area for 2 hours after injections and maintain an upright position. The esthetic effects of Botulinum Toxin typically last three to four months. As the treated muscles regain movement, lines and wrinkles will begin to reappear and require retreatment. Over time, these lines and wrinkles should appear less noticeable due to training the treated muscles to relax.
What’s The Difference Between Botox & Dermal Fillers?
Botox/Xeomin and dermal fillers are both cosmetic procedures offered by Dr. Bonnie Friehling. They are both minimally invasive, require little recovery time, and do not have the potential risks involved in plastic surgery. These injectables are used and administered in similar ways but this is where their similarities end.
Botox/Xeomin is a purified form of Botulinum Toxin that causes temporary muscle relaxation (approximately 3 months). Botox/Xeomin is heavily a regulated product and administered by medical professionals to correct wrinkles and the signs of aging. Botox/Xeomn works by temporarily blocking the nerve endings at the injection site and restricting the muscle’s movement or expression.
Dermal fillers are different from Botox because they do not contain Botulinum Toxin and do not freeze the muscle into place. Dermal fillers are soft tissue injectables gels that contain more of what your skin already produces naturally, giving your muscles more freedom to express emotion.
Botox and dermal fillers are not permanent solutions and both require frequent appointments to maintain your desired look.