What happens before and after Botox treatment is a general question asked in recent times. This is mostly because Botox treatments are arguably the most popular cosmetic procedure. As a result, most beauty and skincare practitioners get a lot of requests for clarity about the treatment.
Nobody wants to look old. However, with time and ageing comes fine lines and wrinkles on the face. These facial issues can make you look far older than you really are.
And as you very well know, in today’s world, there is a high premium placed on looking as young as you can manage. It explains why many beauty routines have components that will help you look younger. A Botox treatment is one of such methods.
In this article, we will be discussing all you need to know about Botox treatments. From the before — consultation, pricing and preparing — to the results to expect after your Botox procedure. So let’s get into it.
Origins: What is Botox?
‘Botox’ is a brand name for a product commonly used to refer to all brands, and the treatment itself. The component of Botox which produces its effects is called botulinum toxin.
Botulinum toxin is a protein obtained from a bacterium, Clostridium botulinum. This organism is commonly found in the soil, plants, water, and animal intestines. Since it is a toxin, it is usually harmful to humans — it causes botulism.
What it does
Botulinum toxin is known as a neurotoxin because it affects normal pathways of nerve conduction. For a muscle to contract, your nerves release a transmitter called acetylcholine. Acetylcholine attaches to receptors on the muscles for the eventual contraction.
Botulinum toxin blocks the release of acetylcholine, preventing muscle contraction. This action causes the muscles to soften, relax and become less stiff. Botulinum toxin is generally known to cause muscle paralysis. However, muscle paralysis is usually temporary.
Regardless, the toxin can also cause a potentially deadly illness. But Botulinum toxin has found use in many medical settings. This is because, at minimal, non-harmful doses, the toxin can cause paralysis of particular muscles.
This effect can be used to help many conditions, even cosmetically. The difference in Botox before and after pictures are as a result of this action.
‘Botox’ is generally used to refer to botulinum toxin treatments. Other brands of the toxin used for the same purposes are Dysport, Myobloc, Xeomin, and newly approved Jeuveau.
There are several strains of the bacterium producing the toxin. The toxin also comes in different forms. Botox, Xeomin, Dysport and Jeuveau contain botulinum toxin type A. Only Myobloc is made with the first and only approved botulinum toxin type B.
Uses of Botox Treatment
Since studies have shown how botulinum toxin may be used without harm, there are now several uses for the neurotoxin. Using the protein for cosmetic purposes has become the most well known and the most popular function.
Millions of people across the world undergo the procedure for beauty enhancement. But there are other uses for Botox treatments.
Botox treatment was first approved in the 80s for the treatment of blepharospasm and other eye muscle defects. It’s mostly useful for conditions affecting nerves and muscles. Other conditions it has been used to treat are:
- Hyperhidrosis, or excessive sweating
- Strabismus, also known as crossed eyes
- Cervical dystonia, a movement disorder that affects the head and neck
Again, this is the chief use of Botox. Specifically, Botox is used to remove wrinkles on the face. The more common cause of these wrinkles is ageing. This is because as you age, your body produces fewer amounts of collagen.
Low collagen means your skin is less elastic. So, when you crease your brows or make any such movements, your skin stays that way, leading to wrinkles.
Botox treatment results are commonly experienced in the following places:
- Frown lines between the eyebrows (glabellar region)
- Crow’s feet (lines around the eyes)
- Horizontal forehead creases
Other less commonly treated places are:
- Wrinkles at the corner of the mouth
- Vertical neck cords
- Rough skin on the chin
There are reports of the possibility of using Botox to improve your hair appearance. But that has not been approved. Just like it hasn’t been approved for correcting dark circles.
How it works
When Botox is injected into particular areas to be treated, it causes paralysis of the muscles in the area. This, in turn, leads to a relaxation of the muscles. Comparison of before and after the Botox treatments shows the appearance of wrinkles is automatically improved.
You may also use the treatment as a preventive measure. Of course, this will depend on the state of your face. The input from a certified aesthetician will again go a long way in making your decisions.
Before Botox: Choosing the Best Provider
The difference between your pre-Botox and after procedure looks rests heavily on who performs the procedure. It is not impossible to get a botched job, but that happens if non-certified personnel attend to you.
Understanding the treatment is important. However, finding a professional who will do the best for you is more crucial. Here are the steps you should take in choosing a provider.
- Without a doubt, you will need a board-certified aesthetician for the best effects. This is non-negotiable as such certification is proof of experience and professionalism. You may conduct internet searches or consult with friends who have undertaken the procedure before.
- Research the options you get on social media or through their website. Check out before and after pictures of Botox treatments from previous clients. You have to be comfortable with the results you see before you decide to get work done there.
- Read a review of the potential clinics. While you are not looking to develop a friendship with the expert, it is essential to get a feel of the physician’s character. That is aside from reading reviews about the quality of work.
- After being satisfied with professional and character reviews, you may schedule a consultation with the aesthetician or cosmetic injector. At such a meeting, you should not hold back. Make sure the provider knows your treatment goals. A good expert will be able to educate and then guide you on what is achievable or not. It is crucial to have such an honest conversation to align your thoughts.
- While being open to your expert’s suggestions, you should not let them dictate or decide your needs. A good plastic surgeon should be concerned about you and want to help you make the right choices. After all, it is your body.
- In the course of these discussions, a treatment plan should begin to form. Issues like the number of treatments necessary and the associated costs should be discussed. Both parties must clearly understand what is to be done.
The plan may also involve your doctor asking you to do some activities. This is usually to gauge how your facial muscles work. The best treatment results often depend on such tests.
Also, it is essential to know that the treatment may not give precisely the same results in different people. Because your friend had this plan does not mean the plan will be suitable for you. You and your skincare expert will develop a plan that works just for you.
Related article: Botox for the Holidays
Before Botox: Preparing For Your Appointment
Botox treatment is a minimally invasive procedure. It is such a generally simple procedure that you may not require many preparations before getting the injections. However, you may practice the following.
- Avoid stress: Although getting Botox is easy and quick, getting a needle in your face may work you up. To avoid any hassles, try to be as relaxed as you can before going for the procedure.
- Mention your medications to your physician: It is essential to let your professional know what medications you are taking. Medicines often have wide-ranging effects in the body and can potentially affect your Botox treatment results, or vice-versa.
Letting the expert know makes it easy for them to chart the best course as per your safety. It is usually advised not to take a medication like aspirin which acts as a blood thinner.
Aspirin can cause and worsen the bruising that may develop after the procedure. Drugs like this should be stopped at least a week before your appointment.
- No smoking: Smoking cigarettes shortly before a Botox treatment increases the chances of bruising. You may ask your doctor how long before you can get back to the habit.
- Dietary modifications: Asides from medicines, there are other things you consume that can potentially mimic the effects of blood thinners. You may be asked to stop consuming fish oil, multivitamins, ginger, or red wine from up to a week before your appointment. These foods can prevent blood from clotting and quickly worsen your bruising.
- Cleanse your skin: For the best effects, cleanse your skin of dirt. Also, keep the makeup box away on the day of your procedure. Wash your face with mild cleansers or soap. Rinse with warm water and give it a good dry.
It is essential to follow these to have positively significant before and after Botox looks.
What Happens During Botox Treatments?
As we have mentioned, Botox treatment is non-invasive. The procedure for Botox is a simple one. It happens quickly too so you may be out of the medical spa in as little as 30 minutes.
No general anesthesia is necessary. However, because a needle will still go into your skin, your cosmetic injector may apply a topical anesthetic. This makes you numb to any pain or discomfort associated with the needle. However most of the time, this anesthetic is not needed. You see, the discomfort associated with getting Botox is very minimal.
The botulinum toxin is usually in powdered form and is dissolved using saline. Your medical aesthetician will use a fine needle to withdraw the toxin from the vial. They will then inject it into specific muscles of your face, depending on your intended results. You may feel a little sting, but it’s generally over quickly. Once done, you are free to go.
After Botox: Important Aftercare Tips
The effects of Botox injection are usually not felt immediately. It may take as short as a day or as long as a week before you start to feel the effects. For most people, the full results kick in after two weeks. From then on, you can begin to bask in your super before and after Botox looks.
You are strongly advised to refrain from scrubbing or rubbing or applying pressure to the area. Doing this may cause the Botox to spread within your face to where it is unintended. You may experience an unwanted side effect if this happens.
Similarly, you should not bend over or lie down within three to four hours of doing the procedure. This may also cause a movement of the fluid and lead to droopy eyelids or increase bruising.
Many professionals recommend doing light facial exercises post-treatment. Some possible activities you can do include squinting, smiling, or frowning repeatedly. The idea is to help the injection settle quickly into the skin.
However, full-blown exercise is discouraged because it increases blood flow. The increased blood flow may move the Botox to other areas and leave the face with inadequate amounts. The muscle contraction caused by exercise is also in direct contrast to the effects you hope for.
Just like you avoid alcohol before the treatment, it is advisable to wait for some time before taking a drink. As much as you can, you should avoid significant sun exposure. It may increase your bruising. You should also hold off on other facial treatments as they can disrupt your Botox.
You may have wondered how long Botox treatments last. Typically, your face will remain wrinkle-free for 4 to 6 months. As the months go by, you may start to experience a gradual fading of the effects.
This time may vary, depending on your biological makeup and how fast your metabolism dissolved the Botox. Sun exposure, alcohol and smoking may also affect how long you are wrinkle-free.
Risk And Side Effects of Botox Treatments
Botox treatments are uncomplicated, and because the injection is localized, side effects are few. Bruising is the most common side effect you may experience from “Botoxing”.
Other possible side effects are:
- Temporary eyelid drooping
- Swelling at the injection site
- Double vision
- Dry eyes
- Neck pain
Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding are strongly discouraged from getting the treatment.
The difference between before and after Botox treatments are usually significant. This fact only goes to show that it is an effective means of getting that youthful look.
Now, you know all there is to know about Botox treatments. If you are considering getting rid of facial wrinkles, visit our medical spa for Botox treatment services.