Botox and dermal fillers have become increasingly popular over the course of the past twenty years. They are no longer used only on celebrities to maintain their youthful appearance, but are commonly used amongst anyone from your next door neighbor to your child’s elementary school teacher. There is still a common misconception about Botox and fillers being bad for you, and the two are often confused with each other. Most of the time Botox is used to treat wrinkles, however there are several other uses for Botox. You can combine Botox with other treatments, depending on your goals and what kind of results you are looking to achieve.
1. Botox can be used preventatively
Botox is most commonly known to treat already existing fine lines and wrinkles. Something that you may not know, is that Botox and similar neurotoxins such as Dysport, Xeomin, and Jouveaux can be used as a preventative measure before the lines even exist. Neurotoxins such as Botox work by paralyzing the muscle in which they are injected, restricting muscle contractions and facial expression that would typically be the cause behind wrinkle formation. If you get Botox injections before you have wrinkles, the likelihood that you will develop wrinkles is slim, as your facial contractions will be restricted. Most patients get Botox every three to five months to maintain their results. Once the Botox wears off, your facial muscles will return to their original state, allowing for regular facial contractions. Facial fillers are often used to fill in hollow areas such as the under eyes, to create a more youthful and fresh appearance.
2. Doses vary
There is no “one size fits all” approach to Botox or filler injections. Depending on the type of filler, the area, and the severity of volume loss, you may need anywhere from a half syringe (or 0.5ml) to two or three syringes of filler. With Botox, the number of units varies based on how strong your facial musculature is and the depth of your existing wrinkles. To treat the horizontal lines on the forehead for example, some people may only need 15 units of Botox, while others may need 60 units.
3. They’re not as expensive as you think
Depending on where you get your injections, the type of injection, and how much of the product you need, for Botox you could spend anywhere from $120 to $1000. Many clinics offer discounts as the number of units goes up to keep the treatments as available and affordable as possible, since there is such a high demand for it. Filler pricestypically range $350-900, and it is important to note, that while it is nice to see a discount or deal at your trusted medical spa, the last place you should be looking out for discounts is somewhere where you are getting a cosmetic treatment. It is always better to spend a little extra for safe and effective, desirable results, rather than to go with the cheaper option, just to end up with droopy eyelids caused by an inexperienced and unskilled injector.
4. They are safe
Botox and fillers are both FDA approved to be used in the face for cosmetic medical treatments. Both are safe and come with limited possible risks and side effects as long as they are administered by an experienced and board certified professional. If injected improperly, you could end up with either unwanted lumps and bruises, or asymmetrical and undesirable results. Be sure to do your research on your injector before scheduling your appointment to avoid these negative results.
5. They are two completely different things
Botox and fillers are often put into the same category because both are cosmetic injectables. The main difference between Botox and fillers is that Botox works by relaxing or paralyzing the muscle in which it is injected, while filler is injected underneath the skin (not into the muscle) to add volume in desired areas. Botox is primarily used to prevent and eliminate fine lines and wrinkles in the face by relaxing the muscle and minimizing facial contractions that would typically form wrinkles and lines in the face. Filler can be used in general areas such as the lips to add volume and increase an area in size, or to fill in areas that have lost volume due to aging or other factors, such as hollowness under the eyes, to create a fuller, fresher, and more youthful appearance. Most fillers are dissolvable if they are a hyaluronic acid based filler, while Botox wears off after three to five months, but cannot be dissolved.
6. Botox is for more than just wrinkles
Botox is most commonly known as a medical cosmetic treatment to eliminate fine lines and wrinkles. What you may not know is that Botox can be used to treat several medical conditions, including hyperhidrosis (or excessive sweating), TMJ and tooth grinding, and headaches.
7. You don’t have to be over 35 to get them
Botox and fillers aren’t only for people who already have lines and wrinkles, or for everyone above a certain age. Botox and fillers can be used on anyone above 18 years, either as a preventative for lines, wrinkles and other signs of aging, or to eliminate early signs of aging such as fine lines or volume loss. There are a ton of patients in their early twenties who use Botox and fillers, and the treatments have grown increasingly popular amongst all age groups.
8. They complement each other
Botox and fillers go hand in hand in treating deep wrinkles in particular. If you have deep wrinkles, chances are that Botox alone can not completely eliminate them. In this case, you can get Botox injections to relax the muscle and reduce the appearance of the wrinkle (and prevent it from getting worse) and then get a dermal filler to fill in the remainder of the wrinkle that cannot be addressed with Botox alone.
9. Lip flip vs. Lip filler
Lip fillers aren’t the only way to add extra volume to your lips. Some people get small amounts of Botox injected right above the lip to create a small upward flip to the upper lip which can make the lips appear more voluminous without injecting a whole filler. While a lip flip is more subtle than filler, some prefer to go with this route, especially if they have never had a filler before.
10. Relatively painless
Depending on the area of injection, numbing cream is sometimes applied before getting a filler, typically with lip fillers. Because Botox is relatively quick, while it can be a bit painful, it does not require any kind of numbing cream. In fact, numbing cream is often only applied to the lips, since it can cause some swelling in the treatment area that could make it more difficult to inject with precision.