Once upon a time, Botox was a hush-hush secret behind the eternal youth of movie stars and fashion models. But since its approval in 1989 by the US FDA for its safe cosmetic usage, Botox has taken the world by storm and quickly become a household name. In today’s era of social media and Zoom meetings, injectables and tweakments have not only been popularized and accepted but they have also quickly become a normalized part of the culture.
But despite its booming popularity, there are a lot of myths and concerns associated with getting Botox. So, if it’s your first time getting Botox, here’s a short guide that covers everything you need to know to have a good Botox experience.
What is Botox?
Scientifically known as botulinum toxin A, Botox is an injectable drug derived from the bacterial toxin botulin. It is a neuromodulator that temporarily relaxes muscle movement by inhibiting the release of acetylcholine. Acetylcholine is an organic chemical and neurotransmitter that’s responsible for smoothing fine lines or contracting certain muscles. Botox is actually a brand of botulinum neurotoxin that has been adopted as the catch-all term for the treatment.
botulinum toxin is used to eliminate wrinkles on the face, but it works best on a specific type of wrinkles that are called dynamic wrinkles. Dynamic wrinkles are a result of years of facial expressions and other facial movements.
Simple truths about Botox
Botox Doesn’t Erase, It Prevents: Most people think of Botox as something that you do when you’re in your 40s or 50s to try to achieve a youthful appearance. However, by that time one already has a lot of wrinkles and fine lines on their skin. botulinum toxin actually might be better as a preventative treatment as it freezes the muscles that create dynamic wrinkles in the face. For deep and long-term wrinkles, Botox has less of an impact. The earlier one starts getting this treatment, the more effective their long-term results will be.
It’s temporary but repeatable: We all know that botulinum toxin is a temporary treatment. The effects of Botox only last for 4-6 months or up to 12 months in certain circumstances. You can follow up one Botox treatment with another a few months down the line, thus creating a sort of permanent effect with no harm or risk.
It’s for Everyone: Botox has an old reputation for being a ‘just for celebrities’ treatment, but these days it’s completely normal for anyone to get botulinum toxin. Prices are affordable enough for most people to get a Botox treatment every few months, and the desire to improve your skin is an instinct that one shouldn’t be ashamed of.
The Botox Experience
Your pre-procedure botulinum toxin consultation should involve a doctor informing you of everything you need to know to prepare for your treatment. This includes things you should avoid in the days leading up to the appointment. Some basic tips are:
- Avoid smoking: Cigarettes can increase the possibility of bruising on the injection site, leading to a longer recovery time.
- Avoid blood thinners: Muscle relaxants and blood thinners increase the possibility of bruising and bleeding during injections. If you are taking any medications, inform your doctor during your consultation.
- Apply cream: Patients prone to bruising can consider applying certain topical creams to their skin shortly before the procedure.
The botulinum toxin procedure itself should take around 20 minutes. It starts with your doctor marking the injection sites. Then your skin will be cleaned using a cleanser and a layer of topical numbing cream will be applied to lessen the pain. Then botulinum toxin is injected into the face, in the sites where the muscles are leading to wrinkle formations. A patient can expect anywhere from 1-3 injections for each muscle. After the injections are complete, the doctor and patient should discuss recovery, after-care, as well as the follow-up review appointment.
Here are a few tips on how to handle yourself in the hours and days following your botulinum toxin treatment:
- Don’t touch the injected areas: It can be tempting to rub or massage your injection sites, but this is highly discouraged. You want the Botox to settle in the targeted areas, rubbing or massaging it can spread the Botox to unwanted locations.
- Do not lie down or exercise: You shouldn’t lie down for 4-6 hours or exercise vigorously after the treatment as it can contribute to unwanted botulinum toxin spreading.
- Avoid Alcohol: Alcohol leads to more bruising at the injection sites due to fluid retention, so avoid alcohol for a week after botulinum toxin.
Side Effects of Botox
Almost all possible side effects from Botox as a facial wrinkle treatment are a result of poor injection technique, leading to the botulinum toxin affecting an area and muscle other than the intended target. Other side effects are caused by a negative reaction to the Botox itself. These side effects include:
- Allergic reactions
- Appetite loss
- Stomach Pain
- Muscle stiffness
- Swelling or bruising at the injection site
- Dry mouth
Here at Alive Wellness Clinics, our qualified team of experts recognizes the significance of Injectable science and art. To produce outstanding results, our talented practitioners blend their knowledge of medicine with a strong creative eye. Not only will they help you choose the best route of procedure based on your particular needs and facial features, but they’ll also help you achieve your aesthetic goals while maintaining your natural beauty. Book your appointment today and experience the transformation for yourself.