Wrinkle Relaxers

Facial lines and wrinkles are caused by several factors: Aging, heredity, gravity, sun damage and muscle action. Muscles of facial expression can cause frown lines, horizontal forehead lines, crow’s feet and neckbands. If these are exaggerated or made worse by making that expression, muscle activity is partly responsible for these lines. Wrinkle Relaxers, such as Botox® Cosmetic and Dysport®, are prescription medications that are injected into muscles of expression. They work by blocking nerve impulses to the injected muscles. This reduces muscle activity and leads to a reduction of the wrinkles that are caused by muscle contraction.

What Products Are Used?

Botox Cosmetic (onabotulinumtoxinA) and Dysport (abobotulinumtoxinA) are FDA-approved medicines that are injected into muscles and used to temporarily improve the look of both moderate to severe crow’s feet lines and frown lines between the eyebrows in adults.

What Will the Procedure Feel Like?

Your provider will ask you to make expressions to locate the areas of injection. Ice is applied to each site prior to injection to minimize discomfort. The procedure feels like a small pinch or sting.

Do I Have To Do Anything to Prepare in Advance?

You should avoid aspirin, ibuprofen and naproxen 10-14 days prior to treatment to minimize the risk of bruising. Other supplements that should be avoided include gingko, garlic, fish oil and vitamin E. Alcohol consumption can increase the risk of bruising and should be avoided two days prior to treatment. If you have a history of cold sores, be sure to notify your provider prior to your appointment and he or she will prescribe a medication to take the night before that will reduce the likelihood of a breakout.

What Will I Look Like Afterwards?

Patients leave the office and return to work or other activities immediately. We ask that you not massage the area, lie down or bend over in the four hours following treatment. To maximize results, you should make facial expressions as instructed by your provider in the few hours after the treatment. Injection sites may be noticeable for a few hours to days after the treatment including redness and swelling. If bruising occurs, it can last for up to two weeks after treatment. You may apply makeup immediately after treatment and continue your regular skin care products.

How Many Treatments Are Necessary?

Results typically last three to four months. Patients find that they may need treatments less often after a few years of regular treatments.

How Long Does It Take for Botox to Work?

While some injectables show results immediately, the results from Botox typically start appearing a few days after you have had your injection. Your full results may not appear until 7-14 days after your injection. For this reason, it is important to hold off on any follow-up treatment for at least two weeks, so that you and your dermatologist can assess the full results of your Botox treatment.

How Long Does a Botox Shot Last?

Generally speaking, Botox injections continue to show results for about three to four months. This can vary from patient to patient. In some first-time patients, the shot can last for just two months, while repeat patients can see results that last for as long as six months. While it varies from patient to patient, the average Botox patient receives injections every four months.

Who Cannot Have the Treatment?

Patients who are pregnant or nursing should not have the treatment. Patients with muscle or nerve conditions such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease), myasthenia gravis or Lambert-Eaton syndrome should not have the treatment.

Botox Side Effects

Botox can cause some side effects, including but not limited to:

  • Pain and swelling at the site of the injection
  • Headache
  • A crooked smile
  • Eye dryness
  • Flu-like symptoms

In rare cases, more serious side effects can include unusual weakness in the muscles, incontinence, and difficulty talking or swallowing.

Before + After Photos


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Related Conditions

Fine Lines and Wrinkles

Fine lines and wrinkles are a natural function of aging that can present at any age and on any type of skin. Learn More

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