Botox & Fillers

What is Botox and fillers?

Botox and dermal fillers are cosmetic treatments given through injections, usually in a doctor’s office.

Botox: Botox contains purified bacteria that freezes muscles to stop creases and wrinkles caused by facial expressions. Botox works by blocking nerve signals in the muscles where it is injected. When those nerve signals are interrupted, the affected muscle is temporarily paralyzed or frozen. Without movement of these selected muscles in the face, certain wrinkles may be softened, reduced, or even removed.

Dermal fillers: These use hyaluronic acid and similar substances to “fill in” or plump areas that have lost volume and smoothness. This includes wrinkles around the mouth, thin lips, and cheeks that have lost fullness. They may also be used on forehead wrinkles, scars, and other areas that need extra volume for a smoother look.

Botox results last 3 to 4 months. Dermal filler results vary, depending on which filler is used.

Because Botox and fillers are different substances designed for different uses, they can sometimes be combined in one treatment. For instance, someone may use Botox to correct lines between the eyes and a filler to correct smile lines around the mouth.

Benefits of Botox and fillers

  • Treat a drooping brow
  • Stop excessive sweating
  • Reduce migraine pain
  • Stop eye twitch/squinting

Botox risks and side effects

  • bruises at the site of injection
  • drooping eyelids, which can take several weeks to resolve
  • eye redness and irritation
  • headaches

Botox is only recommended for people in good health to reduce the risk of side effects.

Taking eye drops before receiving Botox injections may help reduce the chances of some side effects. You should also stop taking any blood thinners a few days before to prevent bruising.

Botox isn’t recommended if you:

  • Are pregnant or nursing
  • Have weak facial muscles
  • Currently have skin issues, such as thick skin or deep scars
  • Have multiple sclerosisor another type of neuromuscular disease

Dermal fillers Risks and side effects:

  • Allergic reaction
  • Bruising
  • Infection
  • Itching
  • Numbness
  • Redness
  • Scarring
  • Sores

Dermal fillers carry the possibility of more risks and side effects than Botox. Severe side effects are rare. Moderate side effects usually go away within two weeks.

In severe cases, long-term swelling of the face might occur. Ice packs can help alleviate temporary numbness and swelling. To reduce the risk of this side effect and others, do allergy testing before getting a dermal filler if it’s recommended for the particular filler.

Dermal fillers are discouraged for people who smoke. As with Botox injections, you’ll receive the best results and fewer side effects if you’re in overall good health.