If certain wrinkles make you look older than you are, there is now a way to erase these lines without surgery, scars and recovery time.
The lines we know as frown lines and crow's feet are lines of facial expression. They are created by the repeated action of very specific facial muscles and the lines become more apparent over time. The muscles creating the frown lines are called the corrugator muscles and the procerus muscles and they are located above the eyebrows and in the middle of the bridge of the nose. The orbicularis oculi muscles create the crow's feet at the corners of the eyes. These muscles are easily identified and their movements can be minimized with the treatment of Botullinum Toxin (BTA) Injections.
A wrinkle relaxing injection is a purified protein toxin produced by the clostridium botulinum bacteria. Although this is technically a toxin, there have been no serious side effects in more than 20 years of use in medicine. This is because, for the treatment described, it is used in extremely small amounts and does not spread throughout the body.
First, the muscles to be treated are identified by observing the patient making different facial expressions. The wrinkle relaxing injection, which comes frozen and dried, is reconstituted and diluted to a very specific strength. A few drops are injected with a tiny needle into the muscle that creates the wrinkle. When the wrinkle relaxant is injected into a muscle, it blocks the nerve impulse from reaching that area, and as a result, the muscle weakens. As the muscle weakens, the skin overlying the muscle relaxes and the wrinkle in the skin gradually softens and often disappears.
When the wrinkle relaxant is injected there is an initial minor sting for a few seconds. Once the injection is complete, there is usually no discomfort.
The most common areas are the frown lines between the eyebrows, the horizontal forehead lines, and the crow's feet. Some other areas may be treated as well, including the moustache area, chin and neck.
There is no immediate response to the wrinkle relaxing injection. It takes several days for the muscles to be affected, at which time, one will notice the gradual loss of ability to frown or to create the lines affected by the treated muscles.
The wrinkle relaxing injection does not affect the sensory nerves so there is no numbness in the area of the injection. Also, the effect of the relaxant is only in the immediate area of the injection. Therefore, the muscles related to other expressions are unaffected.
One advantage of the wrinkle relaxing injection is that it is temporary. The effects usually last four to six months, at which time another injection is required. You can decide if you like it, then repeat the treatment regularly as you wish, increasing the number of facial areas you want to treat. After several treatments, the effects may begin to last longer, sometimes up to nine months.
The treatment has been used safely and successfully in ophthalmology for over 25 years and for wrinkle therapy for over 18 years. In the amounts used for wrinkle therapy, the only possible side effects are temporary and localized to the area of injection. This is most commonly a droopy eyelid or eyebrow. This seems to occur because some of the material injected finds its way into those muscles unknowingly. However, this is not a frequent complication when a good technique and an appropriate dosage are used. Allergic reactions to wrinkle relaxants are extremely rare.
There are very few restrictions regarding wrinkle relaxant treatments. Patients who are pregnant/breastfeeding or have a neurological disease should not be treated.