Botulinum Toxin (Botox)
WHAT IS BOTOX?
Botulinum toxin A (Botox) is a prescription drug made from a neurotoxin produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. Before scientists discovered its use in cosmetic medicine, Botox was used to treat many medical conditions including stroke, Parkinson’s disease and cerebral palsy.
Botox is currently the most popular anti-aging treatment in the world for the cosmetic correction and reduction of facial lines and wrinkles. Injections containing tiny amounts of Botox temporarily paralyse muscles that cause wrinkles resulting from facial expression (dynamic wrinkles).
HOW IT WORKS:
Before injecting Botox, your doctor may apply some numbing cream to the treatment areas. Botox is injected into the neuromuscular tissue in extremely small concentrations.
It works by temporarily blocking signals from the nerve cells to reach muscles. This effectively leaves the muscles without instructions to contract, therefore paralyzing them.
The toxin usually takes between 24 and 72 hours to see the full effects.
Botox made up 50% of all procedures performed in 2013 according to a study by the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (AAFPRS). The study, on the latest trends in facial plastic surgery, also found that nearly 75% of the procedures performed in 2013 were minimally invasive treatments.
WHY IT CAN HELP YOU:
Apart from eliminating dynamic wrinkles and creases all over the face, neck and chin, Botox may also be used to improve facial contours, lessen facial shadows and smooth the outline of the jaw.
Botox is most often used to treat horizontal and vertical forehead lines, frown lines in the central brow area (glabella) between the eyebrows and wrinkles around the eyes (‘crow’s feet’).
It delivers a noticeably refreshed, more youthful appearance that can last up to four months.
RESULTS: WHAT TO EXPECT:
Botulinum toxin is able to virtually erase many facial lines and visibly reduce other wrinkles.
While it offers dramatic results, it may take between two and five days before you notice the full effects.
Results may vary, but the benefits of Botox injections can last up to four months.
An added benefit is that its effects often last longer with each subsequent treatment session. Therefore, after you have been receiving Botox injections regularly (every three to five months) for two or three years, you may find it takes a longer period of time before you need repeat treatments.
KEY FEATURES AND BENEFITS:
• Minimally invasive, non surgical procedure
• Clinically proven effectiveness in wrinkle reduction
• Simple, convenient procedure – requires no recovery time
• Minimal discomfort during procedure
• Clinically established safety with few side effects
• Botox (by Allergan) has been cleared by the American Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for cosmetic corrections.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
Botox injections generally have few side effects. You may experience temporary bruising, headache or mild swelling around the injection site. However, these usually disappear within a few days.
• Botulinum toxin should not be used if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
• People with a previous allergic reaction to the drug or any of its ingredients should also avoid its use.
• Following an injection session, patients are advised not to do any strenuous activity for one or two days afterward. This minimizes the chance of any Botulinum toxin becoming dislodged from the injected areas and circulating to surrounding muscles.
• You should also avoid having and laser/IPL treatments, facials and facial massage for one to two weeks after injections for the same reason.
In addition to its popular cosmetic use, Botox has played a very important role for many years in treating and managing more than 20 different medical and muscle conditions. These include cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis, stroke, Parkinson’s disease, overactive bladder, chronic migraine and excessive sweating (Hyperhidrosis).