Botulinum toxin or “Botox” for short is a procedure performed in many aesthetics clinic. It is marketed under various brand names such as Botox, Dysport and Xeomin and has been in the market for over 30 years.
Common uses of Botox
In the aesthetic and beauty industry, Botox has been popularized in the treatment of frown lines, crows’ feet, marionette lines, bunny lines and neck lines.
Our doctors will analyse your face and identify areas that are suitable for treatment with Botox. These treatments may need to be combined with fillers or other non-invasive skin tightening treatments for best effects.
Aside from the face and neck, Botox injections are also used in the treatment of excessive sweating (hyperhidrosis) of the palms and armpits, as well as large calf muscles.
How it works
Botox works by blocking transmitters that provide the signal for muscle fibres to contract. Blocking these signals result in muscle paralysis. The inability of muscles to contract will diminish the appearance of wrinkles and lines on the face. Initial effects are usually visible 3 days after treatment, and best effects can be appreciated 2 weeks post-injection.
The paralyzed muscles will also start to shrink in size (atrophy). This is useful in the treatment of jaw muscles in creating a slimmer jaw line, as well as for muscular calves. These effects are best seen after 4-6 weeks.
The toxin will eventually be eliminated from the body.
Botox can be done as a lunch time procedure. Usual treatment durations range from 5-15 mins depending on the number of areas treated.
The toxin is delivered into the desired muscle through a fine needle. The procedure is relatively painless and no topical anaesthetic is required. Ice-packs or cold compress placed over the planned treatment areas prior to injection can make the procedure more comfortable.
There is minimal downtime and you can return back to work immediately after the procedure.
As facial muscles differ between persons, an assessment of muscle bulk and muscles strength will be made by a botox-certified doctor before administration of a suitable dose. Patient’s preference also factors in – some prefer fully frozen faces, but the majority prefer to have some facial expression preserved.
Duration of action
Effects of Botox generally range from 4-6 months, depending on the muscle treated.
In the treatment of jaw and calf muscles, repeated injections may cause the muscle atrophy to become permanent.
Potential side effects of Botox face treatment
While generally safe when appropriate dosages are used, side effects commonly arise when the toxin diffuses from the injection site and cause paralysis of unintended muscles and will differ depending on which muscle groups are treated. Examples include drooping of the eyelids when treating the frown lines or asymmetrical smile when treating the jaw muscles or crow’s feet. These side effects are temporary but may last a number of months, and are minimized with good injection technique and post-injection care. Our doctors will advise you on the specific side effects before embarking on the treatment.
Other potential side effects include headache, flu like symptoms.
Do not massage over the injected areas, avoid alcohol consumption for 2 days after.
No sports for 24 hours.
Move the treated muscles 5-6 times a day during the first 24 hours in order to help the toxin fix. Top-up injections may be necessary on review.