With over 4 million procedures performed in 2006, Botox® Cosmetic is the most popular minimally-invasive cosmetic procedure performed. Used to treat facial lines and wrinkles such as forehead lines, frown lines, crow’s feet, and lines around the neck, Botox® Cosmetic is the registered product name for Botulinum toxin, Type A. Botulinum toxin is produced by a bacterium known as “clostridium botulinum”, and is normally responsible for causing the bacterial infection known as botulism. However, in small doses, botulinum toxin can be used safely to reduce the appearance of facial lines and wrinkles. In addition, botulinum toxin has been shown to be an effective method for treating other conditions, such as migraines, excessive sweating, and muscle spasms, among others.
With little downtime and almost immediate results, Botox® Cosmetic can help you restore a smoother, more youthful appearance to the face.
Botox® Cosmetic Injections
Using an ultra fine needle, the physician will inject small amounts of Botox® Cosmetic into the facial muscles along the treatment areas. If an anesthetic has not been administered, you may feel a slight stinging or burning sensation during the procedure.
In addition to factors such as age, sun exposure, and heredity, one of the primary causes of facial lines and wrinkles is repetitive muscle contraction. Nerves release neurotransmitters, which are chemicals that send signals, or impulses to other nerves, muscles, or the brain. Nerve impulses are what trigger muscles to contract, or move. When injected into facial muscles, the toxin in Botox® Cosmetic injections blocks the transmission of these nerve impulses, which temporarily paralyzes muscles and prevents them from contracting.
Botox® Cosmetic Recovery
You will typically be able to resume normal activities immediately following the procedure. You may notice some redness, minor swelling or bruising, or numbness around the injection sites. If you receive injections in the forehead region, you may also experience a headache following treatment. However, these and other symptoms are generally minor and should resolve within a few days following the procedure.
Juvederm/Hyaluronic Acid Injections
Injectable fillers are one of the most popular facial rejuvenation techniques. As we age, the underlying tissues that keep our skin looking youthful and firm begin to break down due to the effects of gravity, sun exposure, diet, genetic factors, and years of facial muscle movement. Over time these factors contribute to the development of lines, wrinkles, and folds in the face.
Where Do Wrinkles Form?
Your skin consists of two layers known as the epidermis and the dermis. The epidermis, or outer layer of the skin, acts as the skin’s primary defense against the environment. The dermis, or innermost layer of the skin, is composed primarily of connective tissue and provides the skin with a support network. Most facial wrinkles and deeper folds occur within the dermal layer of the skin.
The Basics of Hyaluronic Acid Fillers
Hyaluronic acid is a naturally occurring complex sugar molecule that forms large matrices in the connective tissue of the body, such as skin and cartilage. Much like a sponge, its primary function is to bind and absorb water molecules, which creates volume in the face. Hyaluronic acid fillers are generally used to treat facial wrinkles and folds and to enhance the appearance of the lips. One of the fastest growing dermal filler treatments available, hyaluronic acid fillers work by replacing the hyaluronic acid in the body that has depleted over time, which restores the volume beneath the skin’s surface.
Types of Hyaluronic Acid Fillers
While there are a variety of hyaluronic acid fillers, some of the most common are Hylaform®, Restylane®, and Juvederm®. Hylaform®, marketed by INAMED Aesthetics, consists of avian, or bird-derived, hyaluronic acid. Restylane®, marketed by Medicis, and Juvederm®, marketed by Allergan, are both non-animal derived forms of hyaluronic acid produced in the laboratory. Hyaluronic acid fillers are generally biocompatible, which means allergy skin testing is not required prior to treatment.
Depending on the extent of treatment, hyaluronic acid injection procedures typically last between fifteen and sixty minutes. Prior to the start of your procedure, the treatment areas will be cleansed, usually using an alcohol based cleaner. Unlike collagen injections, hyaluronic acid injections do not include an anesthetic agent. Therefore, a local or topical anesthetic may be used to numb the treatment area during the procedure.
Hyaluronic Acid Injection Procedure
Using an ultra fine needle, hyaluronic acid is injected into the dermis at several points along the edge of the treatment area. After approximately two to three injections, the physician will massage the treatment area. Dr. Gabriel will continue injecting the filler along the length of the wrinkle or fold until maximum correction has been achieved. If a local anesthesia has not been used, you may feel some minor stinging from the injections. As the injected hyaluronic acid molecules attract and bind water molecules, the volume beneath the skin will increase, restoring a smoother, more youthful appearance.
Hyaluronic Acid Injection Recovery
Immediately following the injections, you may experience some redness, slight stinging, minor swelling, or bruising in the treatment area. Tiny scabs may also form at the injection sites. These symptoms typically disappear within two to three days. Bandaging is not necessary and most patients are able to resume normal activities immediately following treatment.
Content courtesy of plasticsurgery.org