Botox is arguably the hottest cosmetic treatment for taming fine wrinkles, and for good reason: it works. The product functions by essentially paralyzing a group of muscles beneath the skin, muscles responsible for creating and animating fine lines and wrinkles of the face. That may sound a bit scary, but it’s incredibly effective, and for that reason people turn to Botox in droves.
Still, there can be a few downsides to Botox and it’s alternatives, but the vast majority can be avoided. PSC Reporter Dawn Tongish outlines some tips that you need to know before wiping away those age lines.
What Could Go Wrong?
Botox has long been considered the secret weapon of Hollywood A-Listers like Jennifer Aniston. The actress, who is beyond 40 years old, is said to use the injections to maintain a youthful and flawless appearance. Most people would agree – it’s working for Aniston to erase fine lines and wrinkles. Millions of women who aren’t in the limelight also swear by the stellar effects of Botox and it’s ability to roll back the clock, but experts advise even the best products miss a beat at times.
“You could get a bruise with Botox, or it may not work in the area or the injector could just miss the area,” says Dr. Craig Colville, a board certified plastic surgeon in Toledo, Ohio. He says Botox injections usually go well, but if there is a problem it often relates to a poorly trained injector using questionable product. “It’s possible that the Botox is old or that it isn’t really Botox or that it’s highly diluted. That could happen,” he explains.
Collville says it’s very important to know and understand the qualifications of your Botox injector. Search for a board certified plastic surgeon who you will trust to only use quality products.
Understand Your Options
There are many different reasons why people are interested in Botox. Younger patients in their late 20’s may start as more of a preventative measure to keep their appearance looking young and fresh, while a patient in their 40’s or 50’s may use it to smooth deeper lines around the mouth, forehead or eyes.
Whatever your goals, experts say it’s important to know that patient safety should be the first priority with any provider. “Patient safety is number one,” says Dr. Dustin Reid, a board-certified plastic surgeon in Austin, Texas. He says in his office there strict guidelines for the use of Botox. “We only use Botox that’s from this country and we make sure that the product isn’t expired.”
Reid ensures that he maps out a treatment plan with each new patient because he says every person is different. “I am going to start with a conservative approach, and then advance as we need to. Eventually we learn together and then we’ll make it perfect every single time,” he explains.
Patients need to realize that while Botox can be had for a bit cheaper at a local medical spa or their family doctor, these practitioners have a fraction of the skill and experience board certified plastic surgeons have. When the latter category utilizes Botox, they’re using it after a full exploration of a patient’s needs and unique features. As Dr. Reid explained, oftentimes the first injections are done conservatively to see how the patient responds. Eventually, they will utilize Botox in a calculated way to achieve the best possible, unique results.
Reid and Colville advise patients who have questions to call their injectors to follow-up. Don’t be afraid to speak up and ask for an extra tweak of Botox, if necessary. “We like to see people we don’t know very well back in the office in a week or two just to make sure it’s perfect,” says Dr. Colville.