Botox® provides an elegant softening of wrinkles of the face producing a natural youthful appearance without surgery. It is the ideal minimally invasive cosmetic procedure for producing dramatic improvements.
What is Botox®?
Botox® is the therapeutic version of a naturally occurring chemical which has the ability to temporarily weaken or paralyze muscles. It is used for many applications in the body, by many different medical specialties. For the face and neck region and is effective in reducing or eliminating wrinkles such as the frown lines between the eyebrows, the horizontal wrinkles of the forehead, and the crows feet seen at the corners of the eyes, as well as many other areas.
Who is a Candidate For Botox?
If you are concerned with the appearance of frown lines, forehead wrinkles or crows feet Botox may be an ideal solution for you.
How are Botox® Treatments Performed?
Using very tiny needles, a diluted solution of Botox® is placed directly into the muscles which cause wrinkling of the face. Over the next few days, the wrinkles soften or disappear completely as the muscle gradually weakens.
How Does Botox® Work?
Botox® blocks the sites on muscles where nerves attach and so controls the action of the muscles. These are referred to as “Receptor sites”. After the Botox® is injected, it slowly spreads throughout the muscle, and blocks the receptor sites, weakening or paralyzing the muscles which cause wrinkles. The Botox® sits on these receptor sites where it is slowly “digested” by the body, allowing the muscle to gradually return to its normal, pretreatment status. The effects of Botox® absolutely do not spread to distant parts of the body. Its action is limited to the local area of treatment.
How Long is the Recovery From a Botox® Treatment?
Recovery is very simple. There is only a very mild ache felt following the treatment, lasting for a few moments to a few hours. If necessary, Tylenol is generally adequate for treatment. Vigorous physical activity is prohibited for four to six hours, but you can drive or return to work immediately following the treatment. Full exercise is permitted the day following your injection, and you can apply make-up thirty minutes following the treatment.
What Kind of Results Can I Expect?
Botox® takes approximately 5 days to work after injection and is quite effective for twelve weeks. After this period it gradually disappears. Patients are generally quite happy with the results and return for additional treatments after three months.
How Long Does Botox® Last?
If continued treatments are not performed, the effect is slowly lost over four to six months, and patients return to their pretreatment status. No new wrinkles are formed during the treatment, and no long-term changes are seen. In many patients, repeated use of the Botox® causes the muscle to weaken and shrink, reducing the number of treatments necessary to maintain the correction.
Are There Risks with Botox®?
The nice thing about Botox® is that the risk of significant complications is extremely small. The most common problem seen is a small bruise at the site of the injection. This generally clears in a few days without treatment and may be covered with make-up during this period. (Aspirin and other blood thinners can lead to bruising and should be avoided for several days prior to your treatment.) The droop of the outside end of the eyebrows can sometimes occur as the horizontal wrinkles are treated, and on rare occasions, the Botox® has been reported to spread to the muscles around the eyelid causing a droop of the eyelid, or double vision. The reassuring thing is that all of these problems are self-correcting with time.
Should I have Botox® treatments?
That’s a decision only you can make. At your consultation, Dr. Barnett will work with you to understand the benefits, and risks, as well as the cost. He’ll also discuss alternatives. Based on that, you should be able to make the decision that is correct for you!
To learn more about what you can expect during a Botox Procedure, or to schedule your consultation with Dr. Barnett at either his San Francisco or Walnut Creek office, please complete the form on this page or call 415-362-1221