Wrinkles and sagging skin plague many of us as we age, as the result of a natural loss of elasticity combined with habits of facial expression that create crow’s feet, forehead furrows, and smile or frown lines. One effective and safe solution is Botox or FaceTite treatments in Houston, from a plastic surgeon who specializes in facial rejuvenation procedures. These treatments are safe and effective ways to restore smooth facial skin; with expert application, Botox can offer amazing results without a surgical facelift.
Let’s look deeper into what Botox is, how it is used to restore a youthful appearance, choosing the right doctor, and the appropriate aftercare to maintain your amazing results.
What Is Botox and How Does It Work?
Botox is a therapeutic protein molecule produced by an organism called Clostridium botulinum. It functions as a neurotoxin, affecting how nerves respond to stimuli. By blocking chemical nerve signals, Botox injections relax facial muscles that cause wrinkles around the mouth, eyes, and forehead.
Brand names used for cosmetic surgery and facial rejuvenation procedures include Botox, Dysport, Myobloc, and Xeomin. All of these formulations use the botulinum protein as their main ingredient. They are provided to a licensed professional in a crystalline form, which is reconstituted just before use with saline or another sterile liquid and injected into problem areas.
What Other Conditions Is Botox Used to Treat?
This natural substance has been used for more than 50 years in the treatment of a variety of diseases.1 It was approved for treating forehead wrinkles and frown lines in 2002, but also safely treats many serious medical conditions, including:
- Lazy eye (strabismus)
- Wry neck and neck spasms (cervical dystonia)
- Excess sweating (hyperhidrosis)
- Migraine headaches
- Overactive bladder
- Cerebral palsy muscle contractions
How Does Botox Eliminate Facial Wrinkles?
We all have unconscious and habitual facial grimaces when we focus on something, especially a computer screen. Years of adopting this same expression strengthen the muscles that control it and folds the skin over and over into those same lines. These wrinkles are very difficult to hide because of the muscle involvement that controls that facial expression.
Botox injections relax the muscles that produce the wrinkles, creating a younger, happier, more pleasant expression with natural facial movements being unaffected. The effect is limited to the site of the injection and, when properly used, this substance does not migrate through the body,1 so only the intended areas of the face are relaxed.
The Risks of Botox Treatment Are Small
Because Botox is a substance produced by a bacteria, not a bacteria itself, it cannot reproduce in your body to make you sick. The amount of botulinum toxin used for cosmetic or plastic surgery is a tiny fraction of the amount needed to cause symptoms of botulism poisoning.
When Botox is administered at the right dosage and frequency by an experienced plastic surgeon, the risk of these types of complications is very small:2
- Muscle weakness away from the injection site
- Bladder control issues
- Problems with speaking or swallowing
- Headache or flu-like symptoms
- Eye-watering or eye dryness
- Asymmetry (eyebrows or eyelids not even)
- Vision problems
- Injection site pain, swelling, or bruising
Preparing for Botox Treatment
In preparation for Botox treatments, or any plastic surgery procedures, you should communicate with your doctor clearly about your past history and your desired results. Be sure to mention if you:
- Have had any type of Botox injections in the past 4 months.
- Have had recent surgery, breast augmentation, or another cosmetic surgery.
- Are taking muscle relaxants, allergy medications, or sleeping aids.
- Take prescription blood thinners. These may need to be paused just before treatment.
What to Expect During Botox Treatment
This procedure does not involve much discomfort, and you will be awake throughout the process, which usually involves these steps:
- The areas to be treated are cleaned with an antiseptic solution.
- A topical anesthetic cream may be used, and/or ice and vibration, to numb the areas to be treated.
- Using a very thin needle, the plastic surgeon will inject tiny amounts of Botox in a carefully designed pattern.
- There may be 4-5 injections in the forehead and 2-3 spots around each eye in a typical procedure.
- Pressure may be applied to the injection sites to reduce or prevent minor bleeding and reduce bruising.
- You will lie upright on the exam table for 2-5 minutes after the injections.
What to Expect After Your Botox Procedure
There are recommendations for Botox aftercare that will help you recover quickly and achieve the best possible results.
- Avoid lying down for 3-4 hours after your treatment.
- Stay out of the pool, hot tub, or sauna for the day.
- Avoid strenuous activity for the next several days.
- Use acetaminophen for pain if needed. Avoid aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen, and related painkillers to reduce bruising.
- Practice smiling, frowning, raising your eyebrows, and squinting to work your facial muscles.
- Wait at least 24 hours before having a facial, rubbing, or massaging the treated areas.
- Mild bruising may still occur but should disappear in approximately one week.
Follow-Up Care and Long-Term Results of Botox
The results of your treatment may not be immediately obvious. The relaxing effect on the muscles takes 3-7 days to be apparent and is complete after about two weeks. It is helpful to take pictures just before and immediately following your treatment so that you can see the improvement as the days go by.
A few facts that will be helpful during the weeks following your procedure:
- Any small marks or bumps will go away within a few hours after treatment.
- Bruising should be mild and temporary and is easily covered with makeup.
- The initial treatment will last 2-3 months; subsequent treatments may last four months or longer.
- The large folds and wrinkles will be relaxed, and small wrinkles may disappear.
- A dermal filler might be used in a later treatment to further improve the results if desired.
Selecting the Best Doctor to Perform Your Procedure
While Botox is a safe and medically approved treatment for wrinkles, there is considerable skill involved both in selecting and preparing the Botox solution and in placing the injections properly. Rather than searching for Botox specials in Houston or Botox injections near me, you should choose a locally respected plastic surgeon with extensive experience.
A skillful and certified doctor will use Botox injections as one treatment option in a wide variety of therapies and tools available to create your most beautiful self. This facial rejuvenation technique might be the first step or the only one needed to reduce or eliminate your wrinkles.
Other Alternatives to Surgical Face Lifts
Along with traditional Botox injections, there are constant improvements to wrinkle removal and anti-aging technology. At The Houston Center for Breast and Body, we offer all of the latest rejuvenation procedures, including FaceTite in our Houston facility. We can create a customized plan to achieve your goals quickly and often without surgery.
Using dermal fillers, Botox treatments, and radio frequency energy, the latest advances in cosmetic medicine will allow you to show your best face to the world with confidence. Contact us today for a consultation and find out how advanced rejuvenation techniques can beautify and revive your appearance.