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Wrinkle treatment with Botox – risks, treatment, durability

Botox is the best-known remedy in the fight against wrinkles, and it is no longer just celebrities who rely on the rejuvenating treatment by injection. The nerve toxin paralyzes the muscles, is supposed to provide a firmer complexion, but can also extremely distort the natural facial features. If you are considering treatment despite all the risks, be well informed. Tikbow answers the most important questions about the controversial wrinkle treatment.

Hand on heart, more and more of us would like to remain wrinkle-free for as long as possible. However, lifting is rather out. More modern are small, so-called minimally invasive procedures, which can now achieve great results. Botulinum toxin A, or Botox for short, is being used more and more as a wrinkle killer. It inhibits the muscles and thus prevents wrinkles from becoming deeper.

Even if, thanks to prominent examples, the impression is created that a Botox treatment is almost as normal as a visit to the beautician, it is a medical intervention with risks and side effects. Tikbow asked two experts how to handle Botox correctly: Dr. Eva Wegrostek runs a practice for aesthetic medicine in Vienna and is considered the Botox queen of Austria. Dr. Keywan Taghetchian is a cosmetic physician and medical director of Smoothline in München and Zürich, a special clinic for filler and Botox treatment.

How do I find the right Ärztin or the right doctor?

"Best still works word of mouth", means Dr. Eva Wegrostek. In addition, one should find out how often the doctor has already carried out the desired treatment. Someone who injects Botox several times a day can certainly do better than someone who only does it twice a month,” says the expert. In addition, one should ask about the professional training of the treating person and the affiliation in professional associations, recommends Keywan Taghetchian. For example, the German Society for Aesthetic Botulinum Toxin Therapy (DGBT) offers a list of doctors who perform wrinkle treatment.

As a layperson, how can I tell if I am being treated correctly?

A good doctor will carry out proper computer and image documentation in his office from the very beginning and analyze the mimic musculature in order to be able to draw up a precise, individual treatment plan. He also explains residual risks and side effects: "A good doctor will explain to you if, due to your specific facial anatomy, the result after Botox treatment could look strange", Wegrostek says.

For example, the eyebrows of some patients may rise steeply after wrinkle treatment. A bad result can be corrected by a good doctor free of charge! In the case of the first treatment with Botox, the result should be checked after 14 days.

Are bruises normal after Botox treatment?

Yes, a bruise only means that the treating professional caught a small vein when placing the injection during the Botox treatment, which is not a cause for concern. However, very many hämatomes do not necessarily speak for the ability of the person or persons treating the patient.

Why does Botox last three months for some patients and six months for others?

This is mainly due to the dose that is administered individually and also depends on the anatomy of the face. If someone is injected with Botox in the forehead but has very low eyebrows, for example, the dose must be lower, otherwise the brows would drop even more,” explains Taghetchian. In addition, each individual’s metabolism plays a role in how quickly the body breaks down the Botox. The thickness of the muscle being injected can also affect the duration of the effect.

How do I avoid the typical "frozen face"?

Properly used Botox is never visible, but acts like a soft focus for the face and against the wrinkles. The many horror faces are the minority and a fallacy, Keywan Taghetchian said, because the majority of natürally injected faces simply won’t stand out. The generalized fear of a "frozen smile" is therefore unfounded, he said: A specialist knows in which muscles Botox must not be injected under any circumstances, for example to prevent the smile from becoming frozen. Furthermore, it is important not to inject too often and to wait until the body has broken down the substance. If you inject too frequently, your face will look unnatural and rigid,” says Taghetchian. The rule of thumb is to allow at least three months between treatments.

How do I avoid changing my self-image as a result of the treatment?

We hear time and again that the self-image is distorted when Botox is used regularly and the desire for constant injections arises. Even if it doesnät look good for a long time. "I often experience that patients lose their objectivity. The eye also adapts at some point and gets used to the appearance," Tagetchian said. "As a doctor, you can’t just say stop, otherwise patients will just go to another colleague. Above all, it is important to have good photo documentation before and after treatment. This can often trigger an “aha effect” in patients;

What do I need to watch out for after Botox treatment?

There are rejuvenating ultrasound therapies for the face that promote the degradation of Botox. In addition, there should always be a longer period of time between two Botox treatments to prevent the formation of an antibody against the botulinum toxin, says Wegrostek.

Is there a residual risk?

"Botox has been used for üover 25 years – even in classical medicine. So far, the drug has not been proven to cause permanent damage," Taghetchian said.

Is it true that Botox can also be used as a healing agent?

Yes, the neurotoxin has been used successfully since the 1980s to treat strabismus and is now often used when muscles are tense due to illness, for example in the case of vocal cord problems. Today, it is also used successfully against excessive sweating, migraines, teeth grinding, depression and even acne. "We have just completed a study on this as one of the first clinics in Europe. The result: very good results can be achieved with Botox for moderately severe acne, says Taghetchian.