Debunking 10 Myths About Botox

Botox treatments are the most common cosmetic procedure performed in the United States and continues to increase in popularity for both men and women. Despite this, there are ten common misconceptions regarding Botox and other “neurotoxins” like Dysport and Xeomen. 

1) Botox Can Be Used Anywhere On The Face

Botox cannot be used to treat every line and wrinkle on the face. It is FDA-approved to treat crow’s-feet and lines between the eyebrows (glabellar wrinkles or the so called “11 lines”). However, many doctors use it “off-label” to address lines on the forehead, sides of the mouth, neck and to lift the brows. While it may seem like Botox can be used all over the face, it is used to treat certain “dynamic” wrinkles – those caused by muscle movements. It is only effective and gives natural looking results in certain area of the face. Dermal filler injectables are an option for problems that Botox can’t correct.

2) The Effects of Botox Are Immediate

Because Botox acts on the nerves that control muscle movement, it can take anywhere from three to five days to see initial effects and up to two to four weeks to obtain its full effect.

3) You Cannot Develop an Allergy to Botox

It is possible to develop an allergic reaction to anything, including Botox. Fortunately, it is rare to have an allergic reaction to Botox, but cases of allergies following Botox injections have been reported. This highlights the importance of using medication obtained directly from the drug manufacturers to insure purity and not from the internet and third party sources.

4) If You Exercise Frequently You Will Need More Botox Than The Average Person 

Whether you are an exercise fiend or a “couch potato”, it is not how much you exercise that determines the amount of Botox needed, but rather the degree and severity of your lines and wrinkles.

5) Botox Comes From the Manufacturer in Liquid Form

Botox is manufactured as a freeze dried powder. Prior to your treatment, it is combined sterilely with normal saline by your doctor so that it is able to be properly injected.

6) You Can Never Develop a Resistance to Botox

While rare (under 10%), due to the proteins used in the manufacturing process, it is possible to form antibodies to Botox and develop immunity to it. This is very rare and would develop over time  following repeat injections. Xeomin is a neuromodulator like Botox, but is manufactured differently and thus, one should have less chance of developing antibodies to it. 

7) Botox is The Same as Botulinum Found in Food

While Botox is derived from the same bacteria family as the botulinum found in food, it is a derived neurotoxin and cannot cause botulism.

8) If You Have a Facelift, Blepharoplasty or Browlift, You’ll Never Need to Get Botox

These surgeries treat loose muscle, skin and tissue. Botox works on the nerves and helps to “turn off” muscles that cause unwanted wrinkles from expression. They address different things and both treatments are an important part of the cosmetic surgeon’s “armamentarium”. Most doctors recommend continuing with Botox even if you’ve had surgery.

9) Botox Won’t Do Anything for Super Heavy Lines on the Forehead

Botox can be an effective treatment for even the deepest lines in the forehead. However, if may take several treatment rounds before the muscles become weak enough to really soften the lines.

10) It’s Safe to Have Anyone Inject Botox as Long as They Are Some Sort of Doctor 

As with any type of cosmetic procedure, you should only trust your face to a board certified doctor with extensive knowledge and experience using injectables. Just because someone-be it a doctor or not-says they can inject you with Botox doesn’t mean you should let them.


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