Botox is one of the most popular non-surgical cosmetic treatments with incredible anti-wrinkle effects and medical significance. However, your aftercare practices determine the outcome of your Botox results. This article explains how the botulinum toxin injection works and what not to do after a Botox injection.
Botox is a popular anti-wrinkle treatment used worldwide. The anti-wrinkle product reduces the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, and other aging signs in facial aesthetics. The treatment has a few side effects, which disappear within a few days after getting an injection. There is no downtime needed after receiving the injection. However, a few do’s, and don’ts can help you achieve optimal results. After receiving an anti-wrinkle injection, the major concern for many patients is swelling and bruising. While swelling and bruising are common with botulinum toxin injections, certain strategies can be used to minimize the swelling and bruising.
What Is Botox?
Botox is a botulinum toxin naturally found in Clostridium botulinum (C. botulinum). The neurotoxin is extremely poisonous. According to Henriksson (2018), a gram of the toxin, dispersed evenly and inhaled, can kill over one million people. Nevertheless, the injection provides safe therapeutic and cosmetic benefits if administered in smaller doses. The anti-wrinkle injection is used mainly used as an anti-wrinkle treatment in the cosmetic industry; it reduces the appearance of wrinkles and facial creases (Satriyasa, 2019). Besides, it is an approved drug for medical conditions linked to the neuromuscular system. Botulinum toxin injection has a few common side effects that disappear a few days after the treatment. No downtime is needed after the injection; patients can return to their daily routine right after the procedure. Botulinum toxin is an excellent method to refresh your skin and maintain a youthful appearance in facial aesthetics.
How Does Botox Work?
The botulinum toxin injection disrupts the functions of the nervous system. It acts on the nervous system by altering the nerve-signaling system responsible for muscle contraction. Pero (2018) states that botulinum toxin inhibits the release of a chemical substance known as acetylcholine. The neurotransmitter (acetylcholine) stimulates muscle contraction, causing wrinkles and facial creases. By blocking the release of acetylcholine, the anti-wrinkle injection causes temporal freezing to the muscle, making them more relaxed, and minimizing the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines; this makes your skin refreshed and youthful looking.
Uses of Botox
The primary use of botulinum toxin treatment is for cosmetic purposes. It could treat certain medical conditions linked to the neuromuscular system. Scientific reports suggest that over 11 million clients globally use botulinum injection as an anti-wrinkle treatment. The anti-wrinkle can smooth out wrinkles and minimize the appearance of other aging signs. You can enhance your natural beauty with a botulinum injection without going under the knife. The FDA has approved Botox for glabellar wrinkles, frown lines, crow’s feet, forehead creases, and necklines, among other types of facial wrinkles.
Healthcare providers also use botulinum toxin for various medical conditions. According to Bach &Simman (2022), among the FDA-approved medical uses of Botox include; overactive bladder, upper limb spasticity, chronic migraines, extreme underarm sweating (Hyperhidrosis), cervical dystonia, crossed eyes, and eyelid spasms.
What to Avoid After Botox Injection
Your skin antagonistically reacts to excess sunlight and extreme temperatures even more if you inject a botulinum toxin. Excess heat can cause unwanted reactions, such as sunburns and dark spots in the injected area. Heat could also cause increased bruising, prolonging your recovery time. Extreme heat may also break down the anti-wrinkle injection and affect your final results. For optimal results, avoid overexposure to sunlight and other hot areas such as hot tubs, hot showers, and saunas for 1 to 2 weeks after the injection. If you must get under the sun, ensure you apply a high-SPF sunscreen to protect your skin against the detrimental effects of UV radiation.
Massaging Your Face
Botox injections can make you uncomfortable, especially if you are a newbie. Touching or massaging your face soon after the treatment can prevent the injection from properly settling. Massaging also increases pressure on the injected area, leading to prolonged bruising.
Strenuous Activities and Intense Workout
Botulinum toxin injection causes temporary freezing of your muscle cells. Any strenuous activity or high-intensity exercises right after the anti-wrinkle injection can cause painful bruises and lumps on the injected area.
Patients should avoid taking alcohol after receiving an anti-wrinkle injection. Alcohol disrupts normal blood flow and increases bruising, swelling, bleeding, and skin sensitivity.
Taking Blood Thinners
Blood thinners such as ibuprofen, aspirin, and other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) may cause increased bruising and bleeding. They should be avoided at least 2 weeks before and after receiving a botulinum injection.
Other Things to Avoid After Botox
- Washing your face right after the injection.
- Applying topical ointments or makeup after the treatment.
- Lying on your face the first few hours after the procedure.
- Having other aesthetic treatments such as facials, micro-needling, or lasers.
Frequently Asked Questions about Botox
What Can Areas of Your Face Be Treated with Botox?
A botulinum toxin injection treats wrinkles in your face, including the eye area, chin, forehead, and lip lines.
Is Botox Painful?
Botox injection is not painful. However, you may experience minor discomfort during the injection. The pain associated with the injection is short-lived.
How Long Does Botox Last?
Botulinum toxin injections take up to 3 to 6 months, depending on how your body metabolizes the injection and the intensity of your wrinkles.
You can get a Botox injection and return to your daily routine right after the procedure. However, avoiding unwanted activities like strenuous exercise, makeup, and alcohol consumption would be best to shorten the healing process. Before the treatment, consult your doctor for proper aftercare tips. Botox is not permanent; you must schedule a few top-up injections once every 3-4 months. The best treatment outcome is possible if a certified cosmetic practitioner conducts the treatment.
Bach, K., & Simman, R. (2022). The Multispecialty Toxin: A Literature Review of Botulinum Toxin. Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Global Open, 10(4).
Henriksson, L. (2018). Structural and functional studies of a novel Botulinum neurotoxin and MTH1 (Doctoral dissertation, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, Stockholm University).
Pero, R., Laneri, S., & Fico, G. (2018). Botulinum toxin adverse events. In Botulinum Toxin. IntechOpen.
Satriyasa, B. K. (2019). Botulinum toxin (Botox) A for reducing the appearance of facial wrinkles: a literature review of clinical use and pharmacological aspect. Clinical, cosmetic and investigational dermatology, 12, 223.