How Does Botox Cosmetic Work?
Botox Cosmetic is an injectable anti-aging treatment used to correct a variety of facial wrinkles and age lines, including crow’s feet, lipstick lines, glabellar lines, and horizontal forehead lines. Though this injectable treatment is incredibly popular, very few people actually know how it works.
The Science Behind Botox
Botox is classified as a neurotoxin and is made from botulinum toxin type A, which comes from the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. In large doses, this toxin can cause paralysis. Because of this, only very small and precise doses are used for cosmetic purposes, making it safe for use.
You may be wondering exactly what this has to do with wrinkle reduction. The wrinkles that Botox is able to reduce come from repeated muscle movements. Our facial muscles contract whenever we form expressions or make other facial movements. Chewing, laughing, frowning, and talking all require facial muscle movements.
With the repeated contraction of these facial muscles over time, it becomes harder for them to relax into their flat positions, making the skin above those muscles form wrinkles. In essence, Botox functions by temporarily weakening the muscles into which it is injected.
The chemical in Botox blocks the nerve signals to the muscles; although our brain may signal for our body to move a particular muscle, Botox adeptly stops this and prevents the muscle from moving, allowing it to relax and lie flat again.
This results in the overlying skin being able to relax. Through this process, wrinkles soften, giving the patient a more youthful appearance. This treatment also helps in stopping new lines from developing.
The Botox Treatment Process
You will need to take some precautions before your Botox treatment, such as avoiding alcohol at least one week prior to treatment and halting anti-inflammatory medications two weeks in advance.
Botox is safe to administer, as long as it is done so by a licensed professional. The treatment procedure is a short one. During it, the skin is numbed as needed and the areas of treatment are marked.
Botox is then inserted with a fine needle into the targeted facial muscles. The effect remains localized, meaning Botox stays only where it is injected and does not spread.
After the Treatment
The Botox injection sites may be slightly swollen, red, or bruised after treatment. This is natural, but within several hours, these issues should gradually disappear.
No downtime is needed after a Botox treatment. This is because no surgery has been performed and no tissue has been removed. Patients will be free to go right back to work and their everyday lives without any sort of healing or recovery process.
Within a week, fine wrinkles will disappear, resulting in noticeably smoother skin. After about four months, the treatment is required again in order to maintain Botox’s results.
Are You Ready to Try Botox for Yourself?
Botox is an excellent way to smooth away fine lines, giving your skin a smooth and youthful appearance. Learn more from Dr. James McMahan, double-board-certified plastic surgeon – contact us and set up your consultation.