Botulinum Toxin Therapy is widely used in cosmetology and plastic surgery — this is a method of correction and prophylactics of mimic wrinkles with the help of medications containing Botulinum Toxin.
Botulinum Toxin Therapy is also used in neuroscience (correction of convulsions and blind headache), ophthalmology (blepharospasm, squinting), maxillo-facial surgery and plastic surgery (conservative therapy for fallopian neuritis, auriculotemporal nerve syndrome, excessive sweat syndrome, hypertrophy of salivary glands, correction of mimic wrinkles, excessive polyhidrosis, sweatiness of axillary creases, palms and feet).
Features of Botulinum Toxin of A type were accidentally revealed by american ophtalmologist Alan Scott in 1970, after which other scientists started developing and testing medications based on it. It was being introduced in medical practice and cosmetology.
Facial skin is directly connected with mimic muscles, because unlike skeleton muscles, they don’t have double fixture on bones, and one or both ends are interconnected with skin and mucous membranes. When these muscles contract they make skin move. When they relax, skin restores its normal state due to its elasticity. Mimic movements form wrinkles on the forehead, bridge of nose and around eyes. If mimic muscles are blocked, the skin around them restores its elasticity, and wrinkles are evened.
Botulinum Toxin blocks transmission of motor impulse from the nerve to the muscles. When the substance is injected, mimic muscles relax. However, it does not cause muscular dystrophy, and blood supply volume stays the same. Long-lasting relaxation of contracted mimic muscles contributes to evening of mimic wrinkles, but a person can get used to controlling facial expression. In 4-6 months, botulinum toxin is totally removed from the body, and its effect disappears — muscles regain the ability to contract.
Botulism and botox: is there anything in common?
Botulism — is a dangerous toxico-infectional disease that develops when Clostridium botulini bacteria get into human body with contaminated foods. It affects the nervous system and may lead to fatal outcomes.
Botox — is a product that contains botulinum toxin, and it’s impossible to get intoxicated with it because of its minor concentration. It is injected locally in the muscles that should be relaxed, but after 4-6-9 months this neurotoxin is fully removed from the body.
As you can see, the only thing in common is the nature of toxin and effect of muscle relaxation.
Should I be afraid of this procedure?
Some people are scared of being contaminated with the toxin injected — it’s a normal reaction. But it’s crucial to understand the difference between disease and positive features of weakened toxin that is used in medicine. Get trustworthy information!
Some people believe stereotypes and don’t trust doctors who can actually perform many useful procedures. Unfortunately, sometimes it’s impossible to dissuade people: there’s a lot of wrong information and rumors in the Net, mass media, personal stories, etc. It’s the peculiarity of our 21st century — a huge torrent of information, but most of it is deceiving. This is our advice. If you want to go through Botulinum Toxin Therapy, visit a doctor and ask questions, share your fears and discuss them. If you find an experienced specialist, you’ll be in safe hands, and such procedure will bring only positive emotions. Its magic effect will make you fall in love with your face again and prefer this procedure to many others.
However, if you cannot overcome your fear, but still want to get rid of wrinkles, there are many different alternatives, for instance, mesotherapy with peptides and Myorelaxation effect (botuline peptides), or cosmetics with peptides, massage, apparatus procedures, regular moisturizing of skin, courses of biorevitalization and bioreparation, contour plastics with hyaluronic acid fillers, reinforcing of supercilium and temporal zones with mesofibers. Lipolifting also allows improving the form of lips, getting rid of perioral wrinkles, and evening considerable skin pinches. On the consultation, your doctor will help you to find a suitable alternative variant based on the state of your skin, your indications and contraindications.
Indications for Botulinum Toxin Therapy
- Horizontal wrinkles on the forehead;
- Vertical wrinkles between eyebrows;
- Wry wrinkles on the bridge of nose (“bunny lines”);
- Wrinkles at the exterior corner of eyes (“crow's feet”);
- Upturned or low eyebrows;
- Wrinkles around lips (“pouch”), lowered lip corners;
- Hypertrophy of masticatory muscles, bruxism;
- Strained chin;
- Strands and wrinkles on the neck;
- Hypertension of masticatory muscles after orthognathic surgery on jaws during rehabilitation period;
- Treatment of polyhidrosis and excessive sweating of palms, feet and axillary creases;
- Non-surgical face lifting together with contour plastics with fillers based on hyaluronic acid (liquid lifting).
- Inflammatory processes and wounds in the zones where injections are supposed to be made
- Intake of calcium medications, anticoagulants, antibiotics
- Hernias of upper and lower eyelids
- Medical history of myasthenia (muscle weakness)
- Herpetic fever in acute stage
- Chronic diseases of lungs, liver and kidneys in acute stage.
- Personal insusceptibility to botox products.
- Allergic reaction on components of the product.
How the procedure is performed?
After consulting with the specialist, he will define muscular activity while patient is moving muscles (frowns knit brows, smiles widely, etc.) that the doctor asks to make. After that, the skin is sanitized, and the doctor notes the places for botox injection. The dosage is defined, and injections are made. Botox is injected through a very thin and short insulinic needle, they are almost painless, but if a person experiences pain and fear of injections, anesthetic cream is applied.
The procedure lasts for 10-15 minutes, which is why it’s also called a “beauty injection in lunch time”. It’s very quick and gives long-lasting rejuvenating effect.
Recommendations after the procedure:
- After the injections, a person should not stay in horizontal position for 4 hours (lie), it’s also prohibited to bow, massage the face and rub the zones where injections were made, to do house cleaning and exercises in gym, because excessive blood flow to face can make the products distribute unevenly.
- It’s prohibited to drink alcohol for 2 weeks after injections.
- Bath-houses, sauna, hot bating and solarium are prohibited for a week.
- A person shouldn’t use antibiotics, because they reduce effect of botulinum.
- During a day after the procedure, a person should try to contract mimic muscles and grimace to make Botox distribute better.
- During 2 weeks after the procedure, a person should obtain from spicy and salty foods, and excessive fluid to avoid swelling of face.
When the effect will be visible?
In some cases, the effect is visible several hours after the procedure, but usually it reveals on the 7th day, and is fully visible in 10 days. 2 weeks after the procedure, a person should visit the doctor: he will evaluate the quality of injections and, if necessary, correct the zones where more Botox is required.
The effect of Botulinum therapy lasts for 4-6 months, but in some patients it may preserve for 6 months without additional correction. In 6 months, the procedure is repeated again.
Generally, patients need lower amount of Botox for preceding procedures, because facial muscles “lose the ability” to contract by habit, and the skin in the area of injections becomes more elastic, metabolism and trophism exchange improves, collagen and elastin are produced in higher amounts, which make face look fresh and smooth.
Botulinum therapy is recommended to be made 1-2 times a year when the neurotoxin is removed, but not more often than 4 times a year.
Possible complications after the procedure
- pain in the area of injection;
- hematomas that occur, if Botox gets into vessel;
- swelling of eyelids (it’s caused by temporary problems with blood flow and after “disconnection” of orbicular muscle areas);
- overhanging of the upper eyelid (if there are hernias and excessive skin);
- headache during 1-2 days after the procedure (depends on individual peculiarities);
- sensation of discomfort and heaviness in muscles during 1-2 days.
All above mentioned complications after the procedure pass with the time being, and depend on indications, contraindications and the way person follows doctor’s recommendations.
How to get rid of excessive sweating with the help of botulinum toxin therapy?
Botulinum toxin blocks the impulse sent not to muscles only, but to perspiratory glands, as well, which reduces sweating. After Botox injections, sweating stops in 2-3 days. The effect lasts for 6-12 months. It does not affect normal thermoregulation, and the product improves overall skin health: it is optimally moisturized.
Since injections in palms, axillary creases and feet are pretty painful, anesthetic cream is applied on it beforehand. The recommendations are the same as the ones for botulinum therapy for mimic muscles: it’s prohibited to rub and massage places of injection, to overheat (sauna, bath-house, solarium), to drink alcohol (1-2 weeks), and perform physical exercises (first 2 days after the procedure).
The following products are used for Botulinum toxin therapy: Botox, Dysport, Xeomin, Lantox, Relatox, and many others. They differ by manufacturer, degree of purification, storage conditions, dosage and rarefaction, extent of diffusion in tissues, duration and strength of the effect. The medication and its dosage is figured out individually based on patient’s indications, resistance and sensitivity to products.
What Botulinum toxin therapy is combined with?
Simultaneously, a doctor can perform threadlifting (installation of mesothreads), contour plastics with fillers based on hyaluronic acid in the zone of nasal labial folds, cheekbones and lips.
Mesotherapy, biorevitalization and bioreparation should better be performed in 1-2 weeks, because the procedures boost blood flow in the zones of injection, which can affect distribution of Botox. Besides, in a couple of weeks the effect of botulinum therapy will be totally visible, and the doctor may see face zones where rejuvenation procedures should really be made.