Botox® Injections – What Exactly Is Botox?

Botox® Injections | Miami, FL

What is Botox® and how does it work?

What is Botox Botox or botulism toxin has been in use in medicine for more than 20 years.  BOTOX® is an injectable medication which causes the temporary paralysis of muscles.  It has a very targeted area of effect in the face. For cosmetic purposes, it is used primarily in three different areas in the upper third of the face.  In the upper third it is placed between the eyes in the central forehead, across the forehead, and along the outside of the eyes.  Placement in these specific areas helps improve the vertical wrinkles between the eyes, the horizontal wrinkles along the forehead, and the wrinkle’s around the outside of the eyes commonly referred to as the crow’s feet.  The cosmetic effects from the medication can be seen 3-5 days after injection, in rare instances, it could take up to two weeks.

Placement of the medication is performed with a very tiny needle (the size of a strand of hair).  However, since it is an injectable medication there is the possibility of allergic side effects on the skin, temporary bruising, swelling, and discomfort.  Typically these are mild and temporary effects; however, they must be discussed with your doctor if you have a history of any of these reactions.  Overall, BOTOX® is a very safe medication.  It is used in extremely small quantities for cosmetic purposes and its effects are locally acting.  In fact, BOTOX® is used at much higher quantities for other medical indications and these are still safe at these higher quantities.  The cosmetic effects of BOTOX® last 3 to 4 months.  In rare occasions it can last up to six months.

There is often confusion as to how BOTOX® actually helps the cosmetic appearance of the face.  BOTOX®, for cosmetic purposes, helps improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles of the upper third of the face.  It also helps to prevent the formation of wrinkles in the younger population.  This has to be distinguished from facial fillers which help to fill in wrinkles and deeper folds of the face.  BOTOX® can also help improve the gummy smile and neck bands as well.

The treatment of BOTOX® and the exact sites of injection have to be tailored for each individual.  The sites and amount of treatment varies between each person.  The tailoring of the placement of BOTOX® is particularly important in the forehead. BOTOX® can be placed in such a manner that results in either the arching of the eyebrow or the flattening of the brow.  Prior to placement, the desired outcome needs to be communicated with your doctor.

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Author Info

Dr. Anthony Bared

Dr. Anthony Bared, MD, FACS is a double board certified facial plastic surgeon who specializes in rhinoplasty, revision rhinoplasty, and hair restoration. You can schedule a consultation with Dr. Bared by calling 800-943-7295.

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