Feature Image by Park Street

If you’re new to Botox, board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Manish Shah, shares that Botox is a cosmetic treatment that’s typically used to treat dynamic wrinkles, which are lines and folds that occur as a result of repeated facial expressions including smiling, frowning, or laughing. 

Dynamic wrinkles can be difficult to treat with other cosmetic treatments, but Dr. Shah suggests that Botox can effectively and safely soften or make them disappear altogether. But before you discuss Botox with your dermatologist, there are a couple of things to keep in mind, from side effects to downtime.

There is more than one brand of Botox
“There are many brands available to the consumer, including Dysport, Botox, Xeomin, and Jeuveau,” says board-certified dermatologist and fellowship-trained cosmetic dermatologic surgeon Heidi B. Prather, MD, FAAD. These brands all share the ability to soften muscles of facial expression by using small needles to place muscle-relaxing fluid into the offending lines, she suggests. 

Addresses various types of concerns
“Botox is great for softening forehead lines, crow’s feet, as well as those 11 lines between the eyes,” explains cosmetic surgeon Dr. Karen Soika, MD.  You can also use Botox to lift and reshape eyebrows as well, she adds. For those who want to address a gummy smile, Shah notes that Botox can be used to lower the lip so that it covers more of the gum area.

Helps with teeth grinding
“Botox is great for those who suffer from TMJ (or for those who grind their teeth at night), as the jaw muscles can become overdeveloped and widen the face, giving it more of a squared-off appearance,” Pierre suggests. Not only can Botox help with the pain, but he also adds that it can also slim the face too.

Can be used as a preventative measure
“In an ideal situation, you want to get Botox before the lines get etched in,” says Dr. Peterson Pierre MD, founder of Pierre Skin Institute. For instance, if you know you frown a lot, get some Botox between the eyebrows to improve the area, he explains. At the same time, you’ll also be preventing the lines from ever forming in the first place, he adds.

Results come quickly
“The effects of Botox tend to become evident a few days after treatment,” Kim suggests. The results tend to peak at two weeks, and lasts an average of three months, depending on the problem being treated, she adds.

There may be some side effects
“While usually minimal, Botox does have possible side effects worth keeping in mind,” says otolaryngologist and facial plastic surgeon Dr. Leslie Kim, MD. These include temporary pain,  headaches, and swelling and bruising at the injection site, she suggests. Additionally, celebrity plastic surgeon, Dr. Gary Motykie, MD, FACS says, “Many providers say that you shouldn’t be active post-injection, but you can resume your regular activities immediately.”

Never get Botox on a bargain
“The ideal candidate realizes that Botox injection is a medical procedure that should not be taken lightly,” Bard adds. Botox should not be performed where one gets a pedicure or in one’s home, she suggests, as it costs twice as much to fix bad work than having it done properly from the start.

As always, consult your dermatologist with any questions about cosmetic procedures.

xx, The FabFitFun Team