When you start talking about skin rejuvenation, Botox is an excellent place to start. There are all sorts of misconceptions out there about it.
Firstly, that it’s a poison. Well, it is a poison, but you know what… most medicines are poisons! The secret is using it in the right dose, at the right place at the right time. The same is true of aspirin & Tylenol and in fact, Botox is safer than Tylenol!
20 Tylenol, 10 times the recommended dose, can permanently wreck your liver; whereas with Botox the average dose is only 50 units into somebody, maybe less. It takes about 4-5000 units to seriously damage someone; the safety margin is huge.
Botox is a neat protein and I’m lucky enough to have trained under the professor at UBC who pioneered cosmetic Botox. He was one of my mentors when I was doing my dermatology residency at UBC & he is world renowned for what he discovered, with his wife, and what he’s been able to introduce to the world of medicine in general.
There are basically 4 key elements to improving people’s skin.
- Is to relax the muscles that cause lines & we do that with Botox.
- Fill the lines that are just due to gravity & sag, and to do that we use Juvaderm, a filler.
- Is to improve the color of skin and for that we often use pulse light, which helps take down red marks and brown marks on the skin, which is commonly known as sun damage
- Part of the equation for smoothing out the really fine wrinkles is using the Fractional Co2 System, the dot laser; it’s very effective.
- Topical creams can further enhance and prolong results.
Let’s start with Botox though; everyone’s heard of Botox as one of the most widely heard of cosmetic procedures in the world; justifiably so!
I was fortunate enough during my UBC residency to be trained under the professor that pioneered cosmetic Botox, so I saw Botox 15 years ago right from its inception, when it was first coming onto the market as a cosmetic agent and I was trained by the world expert in Botox.
Botox relaxes muscles; this is its prime function in cosmetic use and it does this by just blocking the impulse from the nerve to the muscle. Muscles like frown lines, here, across the forehead and crow’s feet can all be relaxed using Botox.
Botox works for 3-4 months at a time; it takes about 4- 14 days to take effect. The needles are tiny, you hardly feel Botox. I’m a bit of a wuss myself; I don’t do many procedures to myself but I can do Botox myself on my forehead, just above my eyebrows but I try to do it in a natural way; I don’t want to look like a deer in the headlights!
I like to be able to frown if I’m not happy about something, but at the same time I don’t want my forehead to look like a charpe (shar-pay); so Botox can be very useful when used correctly. Many people in sales find that it’s very helpful because they look relaxed. They don’t have to pretend they’re relaxed, they actually LOOK relaxed because they don’t frown quite so readily.
Botox also has many other uses apart from helping with crow’s feet; frown lines and forehead lines. It can also be used at the corner of the jaw to lift the corners of the mouth, so if your mouth is turning down at the edges, we can relax the muscles at the edges and lift it.
Botox is very interesting. We can control a lot of features on the face, like – for example – the eyebrow. The eyebrow is in the middle of a tug of war; muscles pulling it up, muscles pulling it down. If I inject Botox below the eyebrow, the eyebrow will go up… and I do this sort of thing all the time to help people’s appearance; make them look more relaxed, comfortable, more… good looking.
Botox has other uses too… I use it also for migraine, with great success & also to control excess sweating. A lot of people who perspire very heavily – a medical condition called Hyperhydrosis – find Botox will help stop that. Very effective!
Often extended medical plans will cover Botox for hyperhydrosis & migraines, so Botox has a wide range of uses and I’m as comfortable using it for the medical indications as I am for the cosmetic.
If you’re interested in Botox you should make an appointment and come to see me. We can talk about it. And remember, if you keep using Botox regularly you can go six months between treatments.