Is Botox for me?
We get a lot of questions about Botox Cosmetic™ treatments at the office, so I thought it may be helpful to answer some questions and to perhaps dispel some common misconceptions that people may have.
Botox Cosmetic has been used since the 1980’s to successfully treat muscle disorders of the eye (1). Soon after, plastic surgeons began using it to treat cosmetic wrinkles (2).
The rest is history. Millions of injections later, Botox is revered as a medical success story. Dr. Matthew Avram, director of the Dermatology Laser and Cosmetic Center at Massachusetts General Hospital recently opined that “Botox truly stands out as a safe and effective treatment that has revolutionized the way we can achieve facial rejuvenation”(3).
Here are some answers to some common questions:
What is Botox? Botox cosmetic is a highly purified natural protein that relaxes the muscles that causes wrinkles. Injections are using a tiny needle and results are seen in a few days. This means those pesky wrinkles will be minimized or eliminated . . . for 3-4 months!
Isn’t Botox a toxin? Yes. Botox is a highly purified naturally occurring toxin produced by the bacteria Clostridium botulinum, most commonly found in the soil, including in the Midwest. Tiny doses placed carefully by well-trained practitioners make amazing results possible.
How long does it last? Typically 3-4 months. Interestingly, after 3-4 months a second application of Botox will reveal even better results! This is because the skin has been relaxed already and then continues to relax.
What areas do you treat? The most common areas of concern are the “11’s” between the eyes, horizontal forehead wrinkle and “Crows feet”.
Are there any people for whom Botox isn’t a good idea? Yes, but not many people are poor candidate. We don’t treat people who are pregnant or lactating, people with muscle disorders, skin infections or those who have allergies to components of the solution.
Are Dysport and Xeomin as good as Botox? Great question. They are similar products derived from the same bacteria. They work comparably well. We just prefer to work with a product that has worked so well for us, and is backed by almost 20 years of success.
Why is dentist placing Botox? Because we have a detailed knowledge of facial anatomy, muscles and injection techniques! Plus, the visit is quick, almost painless, and discreet – you can go back to work after your treatment. With a unique combination of knowledge of medicinal chemistry (BSc), dentistry (DDS), immunology/microbiology (PhD) and hands-on training from #1 provider of Botox in North America, I feel ideally trained and experienced to administer Botox.
How many units do I need? Good question. The only way we can determine this is by taking a close look at you and asking “How can we help?”. Most people are concerned with lines on the forehead, around the eyes and between the eyes – great areas to treat with Botox for a relaxed, refreshed look. The number of units is determined by your anatomy and your wants. Typically we treat with modest doses at first, and then if you like, we add more to ensure you’re thrilled with the result.
Will Botox work for me? Most likely, yes! The best way to find out is to call and book a consultation where we can discuss your concerns and see if Botox is right for you! I hope this answers some of your questions. If you still have questions, please come in for a consultation; I’d be happy to talk to you.
Paul Doodes D.D.S., Ph.D.
- Flanders et al. CJO (22)4 pages 212-217
- Clarke RB et al., PRS 84(2) pages 353-355
- “Americans Stuck on Botox”, USA Today, 4/11/2012