Just like there are myths about procedures like chin reshaping, Botox, which has been done for many years now, is still surrounded by misconceptions that discourage people from getting it. Let’s admit it – when someone says “Botox,” the majority of the people will immediately think of celebrities and rich people clinging on to their youth through expensive procedures. Either that or you cringe at the thought of those botched procedures that are sometimes featured on shows – ones that are usually done by someone inexperienced, untrained, and uncertified to perform it.
Patients who are pregnant, breastfeeding, under age 18, or have a neurological disease should not use Botox. Since Botox doesn’t work for all wrinkles, you should consult with a doctor first.
But what really is Botox? Simply put, Botox is a purified protein that is derived from botulin which is a bacterial toxin. It is a muscle relaxer that offers rejuvenating effects when injected in certain areas of a patient’s face.
But what is Botox not? Some of the most common myths and misconceptions about Botox:
Botox Will Give You Botulism
As mentioned above, Botox is derived from a bacterial toxin. Perhaps, for this reason, many people fear that it will give them botulism. Here’s the thing, though. Botulism cannot come from Botox treatment injections. One thing you should know about Botox is that it won’t travel throughout the body. In fact, one of the reasons it is favored by people who get them is that they do not go beyond their injection site.
When performed by a board-certified dermatologist – Botox is not only a proven solution for aging skin, but it’s a very safe option, too. That said, you should be warned against mail-order DIY Botox Kits or shady “technicians” who offer to do cheap Botox parties for you and your friends.
Your Face Will Freeze From Botox
Thanks to Hollywood movies, Botox has gotten a bad rep for making your face look frozen or expressionless. Again, this boils down to proper administration. When done correctly, you’ll get the results you want and your facial expressions, too. Seasoned dermatologists know the exact amount that should be used for every single patient. This is a tailored solution, you know. Just because your friend received a certain number of units and you liked the results, that doesn’t mean you’ll need or get the same number of units. That’s not how it works. Remember that the frozen look comes from poor injection and too much Botox.
Botox Is an Irreversible Procedure, So You Have to Live with the Result Whether or Not You Like It
If for any reason, you are unhappy with the initial results, you can actually do something about it. It is NOT permanent. That’s why it is recommended for people who want to maintain their youthful appearance to get their treatments several times a year. Note, though, that before you rush back to the clinic to reverse your Botox, give it a few days to settle because that’s how long it takes for the treatment to show the full effect.
Botox Is Just for Vanity
While it cannot be denied that many people who receive Botox do so for cosmetic reasons, you should know that it’s not the only purpose of Botox. In fact, when it was approved first by the FDA back in 1989, it was intended as a treatment for various medical conditions. For instance, it is FDA approved to administer Botox for people with these conditions, among others:
Eyelid muscle spasms
Excessive underarm sweating
As you can see, none of these myths are true. It is only due to media and stereotyping that Botox got a negative reputation when in fact, it offers a lot of benefits to people. If you are held back by any of these myths or others you might have heard about, do your homework and check with a reputable doctor to know the real deal about the treatment you want to receive. And besides, it’s really up to you to get any procedure that you want (given that your physician gives you a thumb up), be it Botox, a cosmetic double jaw surgery, or others. The important thing is that you get these procedures from an actual doctor – someone who is reputable and is trained and certified to perform them.
THINGS TO AVOID AFTER GETTING BOTOX
1. Potential Side Effects
A tiny portion of the people who get Botox could experience a hypersensitive or allergic reaction. They might have short-lived, mild flu-like symptoms such as headaches or nausea. This is completely normal and should subside after a day or two.
In much rarer cases, a stronger allergic reaction might develop. If you start to notice any of these symptoms, call the offices of your plastic surgeon, and they will be able to advise you.
2. Don’t Lay on Your Face
You should avoid lying down on a bed or couch for at least four hours after you walk out of the plastic surgeon’s office. The Botox that was injected into your face needs time to settle in and take hold. This helps prevent it from moving from the injection area to nearby muscles.
Once you do lay down, be sure to sleep on your back—and only your back for a day or two. If you’re a side or stomach sleeper, you might find this position a bit awkward. You want to avoid your face touching the pillow or mattress because it could potentially affect the treatment areas.
3. Don’t Touch Your Face
The Botox injections you received at the offices of the Board-Certified plastic surgeon were precisely administered. The Botox itself needs time to “settle in” after it’s been injected.
If you were to massage or rub the treatment area, it could potentially result in the Botox physically moving to nearby muscles and having an unintended—and undesirable effect.
This is why you shouldn’t touch your face for at least 24 hours after the procedure. It could also cause skin irritation if you start to scratch at the injection areas. This can contribute to such side effects as bruising and swelling. Avoid the temptation to scratch or itch, no matter how hard the urge arises—you can do it!
4. Don’t take NSAIDs
NSAIDs such as Advil® can cause thinning of the blood, and this in turn can cause bleeding or bruising at the site of the injections. Ask the person who’s administering the Botox to let you know what over-the-counter painkillers you can take in case you start to feel a little pain. Alcohol can also cause your blood to thin and have the same bruising or bleeding effect. Try to refrain from all alcohol at least 24-48 hours after the procedure.
5. Don’t Get a Facial
The area where the Botox was injected can be a bit sensitive for the first 24-48 hours after the procedure. It’s strongly advised that you refrain from getting a facial, chemical peel, or microdermabrasion for a few days after the procedure.
Once the treatment area is healed up and the Botox has settled in and is doing its thing, you can then get a facial performed. Be sure to let the person performing your treatment that you recently had Botox and show them the exact locations of the injections.