Dynamic wrinkles are created by the contraction of delicate facial muscles every time you smile, squint, or frown. With repeated muscle contraction, these facial wrinkles deepen. While you may have earned every one of your worry or frown lines, you don’t have to show them anymore. Botox®, a purified form of botulinum toxin, can be used to improve the appearance of worry, frown, or laugh lines in the forehead and crows feet areas. Botox® blocks nerve impulses to the fine facial muscles that cause these lines of expression. It relaxes the muscles so they do not contract. After a treatment session, the muscles and overlying skin will flatten, lessening the appearance of wrinkles while the untreated facial muscles contract in a normal fashion, allowing normal facial expression. Botox®, first introduced in the 1970’s was initially used for many ophthalmic and neurological disorders. The benefit of Botox® in treating facial wrinkles was noted, and its used has increased steadily over the past 10 years.
Botox® injections are a simple and safe procedure performed in our office. Utilizing a very fine needle, a small amount of Botox® is precisely injected into several locations on the face. The pain associated with the injections is minimal. Usually no sedation or local anesthesia is required and you can resume normal activities immediately. You can even drive yourself home or to work. Slight bruising may be noted around the injection sites, which can be concealed with make-up. The onset of action following the injection of Botox® is approximately 24 hours. The full effect of the injection is not evident until 1 week after treatment. The effects of Botox® are not permanent, usually lasting 3-6 months, depending upon the specific areas treated. There is some current evidence that suggests that repeat injections may ultimately lead to longer-lasting results.
Following the injections of Botox® we ask that you keep your head elevated for approximately 3-4 hours. You should not massage the injection site. We do ask that you frown and/or squint, thus using the facial muscles to aid in the binding of Botox® to the receptor sites on the muscle.
Botox® injections are a temporary solution for the treatment of dynamic wrinkles. Since the effects last 3-6 months, most individuals return for repeat injections 2-3 times per year. Unfortunately, Botox® does not relieve deeply etched wrinkles due to aging or prolonged sun exposure since they are not only related to facial muscle contraction. Other treatment options such as collagen or fat injection, chemical peels, or laserbrasion will be discussed. Botox® injections will not improve sagging skin or replace the need for a facelift, brow lift or eyelid surgery.
Local swelling and temporary bruising are the most common side effects after Botox® injections. A mild headache may be noted on occasion. In rare cases, the toxin can migrate and cause a temporary weakening of nearby muscles. This can lead to a drooping of an eyelid or asymmetry of facial expression. Because the effect of Botox® is completely reversible, any side effect is temporary.
Botox® provides an effective, temporary, non-surgical method for the elimination of frown lines in the forehead and crows feet areas. The injections are performed in minutes with little discomfort, allowing for a return to work or normal activities.