Botox… Myths vs Facts
When I talk to my patients about treating their crow’s feet or frown lines with Botox or a Neuromodulator (Xeomin), they usually ask me the same questions. Patients tend to have the same concerns when it comes to getting aesthetic procedures done for the first time. It is very common and understandable to be scared about how the procedures are done, if they are safe and if they have any side effects that can affect the patient’s appearance at the end. That is why I decided to write this post… Myths vs Facts about Botox. This way I can try to clear up some of the misconceptions, and answer some of the questions most patients have but they are sometimes afraid to ask their regular primary care physicians.
Myth: “Botox is not FDA approved for treating wrinkles.”
Fact: Botox was approved by the FDA for cosmetic use in 2002. It has been used since then to reduce the appearance of unwanted lines that normally come with aging and due to the frequent movement of the different muscles involved in our facial expressions.
Myth: “Anyone can do your Botox treatments. It’s easy!! Go to the place that sells it at the lowest price.”
Fact: I understand that cosmetic procedures can become expensive since they are not covered by medical insurance. It is definitely great to save some money and you should always ask if they have any Botox promotions or specials during the current month. Now, let’s get real… not everyone can perform your Botox treatments in a safe and appropriate way. Would you go to a dentist to get your appendix removed? Hmm… NOPE!!
Always make sure that you get treated by a qualified physician with enough experience and training. Someone who knows the anatomy of the face very well, who knows where the product should be injected and most importantly, where it should be avoided. Some of the muscles of the face control your smile and some of your daily facial expressions, so if Botox is injected in the wrong muscle you could get an uneven smile or even an eyebrow droop (depression of the brow).
Myth: “Botox will make me look frozen and have no expressions in my face.”
Fact: Botox will not give you a “frozen” face. Tell your doctor you want to still look natural. Getting treated won’t get rid of all of your facial lines but it will help you get a younger look. It also prevents the appearance of wrinkles in the future since it blocks the movement of the muscle under your skin, preventing lines from forming due to excessive movement; especially in your forehead and frown area.
Myth: “Botox is very painful!!”
Fact: People tend to think Botox injections are painful and that you need some downtime to recover from the procedure. The truth is we use insulin syringes which have a very fine needle with a small amount of product (liquid). The injection feels like a mosquito bite and the whole procedure takes around 15 to 20 minutes depending on how many sites need to be injected. Most people tolerate the treatments very well. After the injection, you may get a bleb (bubble) under the skin which usually resolves in about 5 to 10 minutes.
Myth: “There are no side effects or risks associated with Botox”
Fact: While Botox is extremely safe for fine lines and wrinkles there could be some side effects and/or risks associated with the injections. As with any injection, you could get some bruising in the treated area, but this is extremely rare. Another possible side effect is a headache right after the procedure that can last up to an hour. This is mostly seen in patients that get their forehead treated and it resolves with taking Tylenol. Other side effects are related to where the product is injected. If product is placed in the wrong muscle you could end up with an uneven smile, depression of the eyebrows or even new lines on the forehead.
For the best results, always make an appointment with an experienced physician who has extensive training to try to minimize the risks associated with this procedure. I get my Botox treatments at our clinic, Bella Mia Medical in Tampa, Fl and they are done by my partner Dr. Pina Panchal. Please call us if you have any questions or for a free consultation. 🙂