Botox VS Fillers
Figure 1: Possible Areas For Botox Or Fillers
Botox and fillers are becoming more and more popular these days, with TV shows such as Dance Moms normalizing it. They are scientifically proven for rejuvenating our faces, helping us to look good and feel good for our age. It is almost everyone’s dream to look young, with smooth and glowing skin, since good skin is the one thing that never goes out of style. As it becomes more common to get botox and fillers, we all wonder, what are the differences between the two?
What is Botox?
It is a short form for botulinum toxin. It is harmless and being used as a medicine in various specialities nowadays (refer to the table below). It was a toxin produced by a food poisoning bacteria decade ago, but with advanced technology, the toxin can now be produced by good bacteria and modified in a way that one can never get poisoned by this medicine.
|ENT or dentist||TMJ syndrome, teeth grinding|
|Ophthalmologist||Strabismus (eyes do not properly align with each other when looking at an object)|
|Rehab specialist||Post stroke stiffness|
|Pain specialist||Pain relieve for joints and muscle|
|Dermatologist||Excessive sweating of palm and armpit, keloid|
|Aesthetic/plastic surgeon||Wrinkles, face-lifting, face slimming, improve neck line|
How does Botox work?
Figure 2: Before & After Image Of Botox On Frown Lines & Around Eyes
Botox works by blocking nerve signals in the muscles where it is injected. When nerve signals are interrupted, the affected muscle is temporarily inactive or rested. With underlying muscle reduce in movement, the overlying skin and wrinkles have the chance to rest and get healed (oh yes, folding and wrinkles is a form of skin trauma). Commonly, upper face wrinkles can be effectively treated such as crow’s feet (wrinkles around the eyes when smiling), frowning line between eyebrows and forehead lines when you raise your brows or looking up.
Will my face get stiff or “plastic”?
A common misconception is that Botox will cause ‘plastic’ or stiff face. The fact is botox will relax facial muscle by temporarily blocking nerve impulse connecting to muscle. This does not cause damage to the nerve or muscle. It will recover within 6 months with no long-term side effects. With correct dosing and proper handling by professional, one can never suffer from ‘plastic face’.
Myth – Will I get addicted? If I stop doing it, will it get worse?
You will not get addicted to botox physically but some patients may become attached psychologically. Once they see the beauty effect from the treatment, they will want to continue it. However, our body will not suffer if we decide to stop doing it in future. A responsible and professional doctor will advise patient only do the needful and avoid over correction.
Is there any downtime?
No downtime from botox itself, but sometimes minimal bruising or swelling may happen if accidentally hit the blood vessels. Patients are able to resume daily activities immediately. It is commonly done at lunch break and patients return to work right after the treatment.
Is it painful?
The procedure is simple and straightforward, takes about 5-10minutes. With adequate cold compress, the discomfort is minimal. Result can be seen after 3-4 days.
Who is suitable to do it?
Figure 3: Jaw Slimming Before & After
You can consider this treatment if you are looking for treatment of wrinkles reduction, face lifting, face slimming, teeth grinding, neckline reduction, excessive palm or armpit sweating.
What are fillers?
Loss of facial volume (collagen, bone and muscle mass) make us look old, sagging and tired. Direct replacement of volume in the face will effectively correct this defect. Traditional fillers are normally made of hyaluronic acid (HA), which is a naturally occurring substance in our bodies that we lose over time. The fillers give volume to the face, plumping it and thus lift up and rejuvenate the face.
Figure 4: Before After Fillers On Forehead
Hyaluronic acid (HA) fillers were first used and approved by the FDA in 2006, after using fat from the body in 1983, silicone in the 40s and 50s, and bovine collagen in the 70s.
In 2009, there is a breakthrough in filler industry whereby a new collagen stimulating filler was introduced. It is called Ellanse (made from synthetic bio stimulating material called polycaprolactone PCL). It is an innovative filler which can stimulate patient own collagen and last longer (up to 4 years). Traditional HA filler usually lasts 1 year.
How do fillers work?
Like Botox, fillers are injected using fine needles, and the procedure is simple and takes only 5-10 minutes. HA fillers are absorbable by our body metabolism. It is also reversible, unwanted filler can be resolved with enzyme within one day.
Will it cause lumpiness?
Many are afraid of this. However, unnatural lumps and bumps happen more commonly with previous older filler made from silicone/artificial collagen. With good quality products and professional doctor, lumpiness is rare nowadays.
Will it cause unnatural look?
We’ve all seen celebrities and people on the street who appear to have “too much” filler. This can be from poor quality of product, patient’s preference or an over-zealous doctor.
To avoid overcorrection of fillers, it is important that you communicate with your doctor and take a stepped approach. Start with smaller amount of filler (1-2ml) and gauge the results that you are after. The right doctor should be able to guide you in this aspect and maintain the balance of your facial harmony.
Is there a downtime?
Usually no, unless due to injection swelling or bruising (which is uncommon). Bruising (if happen) will be small and can be easily covered with makeup.
Who is suitable for this treatment?
Figure 5: Tired Eye Before & After Fillers
You need filler if you are looking to solve the following conditions:
– Looks tired with dark eye circle
– Sunken cheeks
– Deep laughing lines that make you look sad
– Deep Marionette line (vertical line run from corner of mouth down to the jaw line)
– Flat nose, short chin
– Sunken forehead and temples
Fillers are commonly used to fill up the under eye and cheeks area to correct dark eye circle and sunken cheeks. It can make one looks refreshed immediately. Filler can also be used to enhance nose and chin to make features sharper. Some may even choose to fill up forehead and temple to look younger.
In conclusion, both Botox and fillers are very effective solutions to regain and maintain a youthful look. Every year millions of botox and fillers procedures are performed and both remain with a good safety record. So let’s keep an open mind to this trend of anti-ageing and consult a friendly professional to see which best suits you.
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