Dynamic lines and wrinkles are caused by contractions of the delicate underlying muscles every time we smile, laugh, or frown. Over time, constant and sustained contractions of these muscles usually leads to the development of more permanent lines and creases.
Dynamic lines can be dramatically softened now with regular Botox treatments. This procedure involves the injection of a purified toxin produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum (botox). Although this toxin is the same as the one that causes a serious form of food poisoning (botulism), the amount used in cosmetic surgery is so small that no systemic or general reaction is likely to be seen.
Botulinum toxin has been used very successfully and safely since 1982 by ophthalmologists to treat nervous twitching of the eyelid and lazy eye. In fact, each year thousands of patients receive Botox treatments for a variety of other conditions. For the last ten years, it has become an extremely popular treatment for reversing the visible signs of aging.
When injected into a given area, Botox temporarily blocks the impulses from the nerves to the tiny facial muscles that are related to expression lines. Because of this, the muscles cannot contract and therefore tend to relax. When these muscles relax, the overlying skin remains smooth and unwrinkled while the untreated facial muscles continue to contract, which allows normal facial expression to be unaffected.The ultimate goal is to give you smoother, tighter, and wrinkle-free skin that at the same time looks very natural.
Botox is usually performed on the upper face. The most common areas requested are the forehead lines, vertical frown lines between the eyebrows, and crow’s feet around the eyes. While it would probably work around the mouth and chin, it would more than likely weaken the smile. Smile lines are normally either treated by laser surgery or fat transfer. Dr. Javaheri has extensive experience with this procedure and will discuss with you which areas he feels would most benefit from the treatment. Based on your goals and his expertise, he will design a customized treatment plan specifically for you.
Are You a Candidate for Botox?
At the time of your consultation, Dr. Javaheri will ask you about your general medical history, specifically pertaining to any medical conditions that could cause problems during or after your procedure.
About the Procedure
The procedure is simple and safe. Botox is injected with an ultra-fine needle into the desired areas. Depending on the areas treated, between four to ten injections are usually necessary. Any discomfort is usually minor since the needle is very fine and only a small amount of liquid is used. Each injection will feel like a slight sting for just a few seconds. Once the injection is complete there is usually no discomfort.
There is no need for sedation or local anesthesia, and the recovery is immediate. Occasionally, some patients experience a slight temporary bruising or redness at the injection site, which can be covered with makeup. After your procedure, you can resume normal activities immediately.
How Long Does It Last?
The full effects of Botox treatment are not apparent for three to seven days. As mentioned, the effects are temporary, and the toxin is slowly metabolized by the body in approximately three to six months.
There are very few side effects related to this procedure. While an allergic reaction to any medicine is possible, it is extremely unusual with Botox. In some cases, patients may experience a very small amount of brow drooping if injected in that area. This can be avoided in most cases by not treating the one centimeter area just above the patient’s eyebrows. Due to the non-permanent nature of Botox, any potential side effect is always temporary. In the unlikely circumstance a droop were to occur, it would last approximately two to three weeks, which is significantly less than the full dose of Botox normally lasts.