By Dr. Sumit Agrawal, Cosmetic/Plastic Surgery
Botox is a wrinkle treatment but is used for treating a range of medical conditions. It has been in use for well over 18 years and is considered to be safe when performed under the guidance of a medical practitioner. Apart from aesthetics, a range of other facial, migraine and dermatological problems can be addressed by Botox.
Botox limits facial expression: The primary objective of a Botox treatment is to enhance the look of a person and not the contrary. When administered by a skilled physician, you can still smile and animate like before. Botox in no way affects the sensory nerve. The muscle beneath the point of injection gets relaxed and remains active. The apprehension of limited facial activity is baseless.
Botox travel through your body: This again is a myth. Botox diffuses not more than 1cm into the skin. Due to its localized nature, it does not affect any other parts of the body other than the intended area.
Botox has toxic content: Botox like any other drug is safe when taken under supervision. Like other drugs, it too gets scanned by the drug regulatory authorities. It is neither dangerous nor contains any toxic substance.
Dermal fillers involve intense pain: Dermal fillers are not as painful as advocated by many people out there. It does have its fair share of discomfort but a medical practitioner always uses a topical anesthetic and other anxiety related medications during the treatment.
Downtime for Botox is fairly long: Botox is known as the afternoon injection for its convenience and easy procedure. Botox procedure has no downtime at all. Doctors often suggest against lying down for a good 2-3 hours after the injection. Dermal fillers might result in minor swelling but there are medicines to counter that too.
Botox is permanent in nature: By far this is the biggest myth of all. Botox shots last for no more than 3 months. For people who take Botox shots regularly, the effect might last a little longer. As soon as Botox is discontinued, the muscles go back to their own position. This phenomenon is known as atrophy.
Dermal fillers and Botox are the same: While people these days use them interchangeably, they are not the same. For instance, Botox lessens the effect of wrinkles by relaxing the facial muscle whereas dermal fillers add volume to the tissue and restores the muscle.
Botox is applied only when Facial lines are visible: This is not necessarily true. If the family of an individual has a history of facial lines, it makes sense to start Botox for facial line prevention. This delays the actual facial line appearance and requires fewer Botox shots going forward.