Botox is the name for a drug called Botulinum Toxin A. This drug has been safely used for multiple indications for over 20 years in medicine. Botulinum toxin was first used in 1978 to weaken over active muscles in the eye, with good effects and few side effects. Botulinum toxin was then first used cosmetically in 1990, to reduce facial wrinkles arising from muscle movement.

It works by temporarily blocking the movement of treated muscles. The skin overlying these muscles relaxes which leads to a softening of fine lines and wrinkles. Botox is a prescription only medicine which must be prescribed by a suitably qualified professional such as those at Face-Station in Richmond.

Are there any side effects?

Common side effects of Botox treatment are local swelling, like that of a nettle sting. This will only last for a few minutes. There is sometimes a risk of bruising. Up to 10% of patients may also experience a headache after first treatment. It does tend to be mild and will settle with paracetamol. Rare side effects can include temporary heaviness of the eyebrows or eyelids. These should improve within a week or so.

How long does Botox last?

Results typically last three to four months after initial treatment. With repeated treatments results, may last longer, particularly in the forehead. Not surprisingly, your body’s characteristics can have an impact on how long Botox lasts.

If you have thicker muscles, more injections are required to get the desired effect. Rather than injecting deeper into thick muscles, more injections are done to ensure that the same safety standards are met.

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Athletic patients can also see the results from Botox injections fade quicker. That’s because active bodies heal faster and therefore work more quickly to eliminate the solution from the body.

What results to expect

Botox treatment usually takes effect 24-72 hours after injection, with maximum effect reached in around one to two weeks. When injected into the muscles that are responsible for expression wrinkles, it will give the face a more relaxed and smoother appearance. When a gradual fading of treatment effect is noticed, you may have to return to have another treatment to keep the desired effect.