Wrinkles are one of the primary signs of aging skin, and they can start showing as early as your mid-twenties, depending on lifestyle and genetics. Using an anti-aging skin care regimen is a good first step to reduce and prevent wrinkles. But if you’re feeling especially self-conscious about aging skin, you might consider the ultimate wrinkle reducer: Botox.
Creases in the skin are caused by the continuous tightening of tiny facial muscles -- when we smile, when we frown, and when we squint. Botox injections use a needle to administer a prescription solution into the targeted wrinkle in order to block nerve impulses. When the nerve impulses are blocked, the muscles “relax,” and the wrinkle becomes smooth.
By targeting the muscles responsible for creating and deepening facial lines, Botox is a popular and proven wrinkle reducing treatment. Botox injections are most often administered on frown lines in the forehead, glabellar lines in the area between the eyes, marionette lines around the mouth and nose, or crow’s feet on the sides of the eyes.
The active ingredient in the Botox prescription solution is the Clostridium botulinum bacterium, a purified protein. Botox injections are currently FDA approved for 11 different conditions, including facial wrinkles.
First, it’s important to know that the Botox wrinkle reducing treatment is not permanent. Typically, wrinkles will be reduced or eliminated for about six months, but then you’ll need to schedule another injection. Sometimes, Botox can last longer than six months if the wrinkle is not quite as severe, while other times, a wrinkle may become visible again in less than six months. During the treatment -- which only lasts a few minutes -- no anesthesia is needed. You might feel a slight stinging sensation which will dissipate post-treatment. Results can be seen within one week to one month post-treatment, as the muscles relax and the wrinkle smooths.
There is no downtime from a Botox injection, but very rarely, there may be some bruising, swelling, and pain at the treatment site. In extremely rare cases, side effects might include swelling, headache, drooping eyelids, dryness or excess moisture in the eyes, crooked smiles, or drooling. Even more rarely, the toxin in Botox’s active ingredients can spread from the injection site into the rest of the body, potentially causing issues with vision, trouble speaking, muscle weakness, inability to swallow, breathing problems, and loss of bladder control.
When administered by a knowledgeable and experienced clinician, Botox is safe. Therefore, you should always go to a qualified, experienced dermatologist for Botox injections. You should research the clinician’s credentials beforehand, ask for before and after photos from patients they’ve treated, and be wary of any largely discounted treatments that seem too good to be true.
Want to give Botox a try or learn more about wrinkle reducing treatments? If you’re in Baton Rouge or the surrounding areas, contact Louisiana Dermatology Associates today for an appointment with one of our board-certified specialists.