- Botox is a minimally non-invasive cosmetic procedure that evens out wrinkles and relaxes frown lines by paralyzing muscles.
- It is a compound that blocks nerve and muscle receptors until a new one is generated by the body.
- Movements in relaxed areas of the face and frozen faces can be solved with additional Botox on needed areas.
People really love Botox. It is the most popular minimally non-surgical cosmetic treatment. In fact, the American Society of Plastic Surgeons reported over seven million Botulinum toxin type A injections administered last year. It is used to reduce fine lines and wrinkles by paralyzing underlying muscles.
Many people though end up hating their ‘frozen’ facial expressions after treatments. Asymmetrical facial expressions or ‘frozen faces’, make dissatisfied patients think that ‘they’ve had too much Botox.’ On the contrary, they’ve only had little in a given area.
This article shares the insights from two plastic surgeons who discuss what Botox actually does.
For starters, Botox is a “compound that actually blocks receptors between a nerve and a muscle- once the receptor is blocked, it does not work anymore until a new one is made by the body,” says Dr. Stafford Broumand, of New York’s 740 Park Plastic Surgery. It takes 4-5 days before its effects kick in.
What if I’m not satisfied with the way Botox changed my facial expressions?
It depends on what you’re unsatisfied with, answers NY-based facial plastic surgeon Dr. Michelle Yagoda. Her unhappy patients are mostly concerned with the awkward movements in their face. People with telltale signs of Botox have up and down movements going towards the sides of the forehead, while the center part is all smooth and nice. In addition, lack of symmetry is when one eyebrow is raised while everything looks relaxed.
These are all a result of ‘undercorrection,’ explains Yagoda, which can all be evened out with a wee bit of Botox injected in areas where movement is unwanted.
Broumand highlighted that to treat someone with Botox would require creative ability and skill, and not just merely injecting the product. Personally, Broumand prefers ‘spritzes of the toxin’ to specific areas that need it, rather than blasting areas with it, making results appear unnatural.
The patients of both surgeons normally return for follow-up checkups to assess the results and make necessary adjustments.
What if the patient hates everything about the frozen feeling from Botox?
Broumand says that it works differently. It cannot be removed or dissolved like hyaluronic fillers, like what Kylie Jenner had for some years. There’s no way to reverse its effects. “Rather, we wait for the body to create new receptors, when it wears off,” Broumand advised.
Yagoda also added that it can take 3-5 months for Botox effects to fade before muscle activity resumes.
As for the unhappy patients who thought they’ve been injected with too much Botox, Yagoda acknowledged that “there is a very small percentage of over-injection or people just don’t like the shape that their eye may change into.” Nevertheless, they just have to wait it out.
Regardless, always consult with a certified professional who can help you decide the best move concerning cosmetic procedures.