Facial muscles help us to express our emotions. Some of us use these muscles more than others, but we all have our distinctive way of grimacing and contracting facial muscles. This continuous muscle contraction leads to the creation of facial lines that appear in the zones more commonly used by individuals. People have always tried to battle wrinkles as a sign of ageing. Many treatments have been tried. One such effective modern method is the use of wrinkle minimizing injections.
What are the injections made of?
The injections contain medicine derived from a bacterium called clostidium botulismus. Toxin of this bacterium is purified and used for various medical conditions. In cosmetic medicine this drug is used to treat facial wrinkles caused by overactive muscles. It is also used to treat excessive sweating (hyperhydrosis).
How does it work?
Hyperactive muscles causing wrinkles are relaxed by the drug and the overlaying skin becomes smooth. The effect of this medicine is temporary (approximately six months) and muscles will be able to work again with the time.
Are there any contraindications?
The injections are not suitable for people suffering from diseases associated with muscle weakness such as myasthenia gravis and muscular dystrophy. Theyare also contraindicated for pregnancy, breastfeeding and allergies to components of the drug.
How is the procedure carried out?
A doctor administers the drug by injecting it into a target area. Multiple injections are done with help of a very fine, small needle.
Is it painful?
Most people find the injections painless. However, in certain sensitive areas anaesthetic cream might be applied prior to the treatment. This will numb the area and make injections more comfortable.
How long does the procedure take?
The actual injections might take only 5-10 minutes. However, every patient is consulted and counselled prior to the treatment. A photo before the treatment will also be taken to compare at a later stage. The entire consultation and treatment will take approximately 30 minutes (a little longer on a first consultation).
What am I going to look like immediately after the treatment?
Initially there may be a slight swelling at the site of injection, which usually settles within 10-15 minutes. No changes are visible immediately. The effect of the treatment is gradual and becomes apparent only after 24-72 hours after the injections.
Can I use make up after the treatment?
Make up can be applied half an hour after the treatment.
What are the side effects?
The main side effects are minimal swelling, rarely minimal bruising and slight muscle tightening. Very rarely a person may experience flu like symptoms lasting a day or two. Transient eyelid drooping is sometimes seen and settles within 2-3 weeks. Skin infection is very rare, as is an allergic reaction.
How long does the effect last?
On average 6 months, sometimes it is longer up to 9 months.
Does it work for everyone?
About 3% of patients develop resistance to the drug and in these cases the effect on muscles lasts for a shorter period.
Do I need a follow up?
There will be a follow-up consultation after two weeks. “After” photos are normally taken then.