What Is Botox?

Botox is without a doubt the most widely used non-surgical cosmetic treatment worldwide. It contains a purified bacteria called Clostridium botulinum that can be found in many natural settings like soil, lakes, and forests. Botox works by blocking nerve signals in your muscles, resulting in a temporary freeze. Without any movement in these muscles wrinkles can be softened or even removed. However, Botox only works on wrinkles caused by muscle movement.

The most common Botox treatments involve lines on the upper face such as forehead lines, brow lines, and “crows feet.” These are also known as facial expression lines and are caused by smiling, frowning, squinting, etc.’

Botox wears off over time and, as such, requires repeat treatments. On average, most treatments last three to four months.

What Are Dermal Fillers And How Are They Different From Botox?

Dermal fillers are gel-like injections that are made with naturally occurring or bio-compatible substances, meaning it is safe for use in the body. Once injected, dermal fillers fill in or plump areas that have lost smoothness and volume, whereas Botox freezes muscles to stop wrinkles. There are a variety of FDA approved compounds used to achieve a wide array of results without the need for surgery.

Hyaluronic Acid (HA)

Hyaluronic Acid is a naturally occurring substance that is found in your skin. It is mostly concentrated around soft tissue areas such as around the eyes or in joints. Consequently, it is used to relieve joint pain caused by arthritis as well as diminish the effects of aging. When injected it can improve the skin’s contour and reduce lines caused by wrinkles, scars, and more.

Polylactic Acid

Polylactic Acid is a synthetic bio-compatible dermal filler used to stimulate the body’s production of collagen. It is particularly effective in the lower face where deeper wrinkles reside. The gel itself only lasts for a few days, but it’s stimulating effects can last for up to two years after about three monthly treatments.

Calcium Hydroxylapatite (CaHA)

Calcium Hydroxylapatite is another naturally occurring substance commonly found in our bones. It is one of the safest options when it comes to dermal injections since side effects are rare. Similar to Polylactic Acid, it is known to stimulate the production of collagen, so it creates a very natural look that typically lasts about 12 months.

Polymethyl-methacrylate (PMMA)

Polymethyl-methacrylate is a bio-compatible synthetic substance that has been a staple in the medical industry since the early 20th century. PMMA takes the form of a microsphere that provides long term support beneath the skin. Because of this, your doctor will likely start with a low fill and add more in subsequent treatments.

How Can Dermal Fillers Enhance Your Appearance?

As we age areas around our face begin to lose volume, particularly near the cheeks, lips, and mouth. Dermal fillers can be very effective in combating the early signs of aging. While they are often associated with filling wrinkles, they can do much more! Dermal fillers can:

  • Plump thin lips and cheeks
  • Smooth out smile lines around the nose and mouth
  • Restore volume to cheeks and temples
  • Decrease or remove under-eye shadows
  • Diminish lip lines
  • Improve facial symmetry