Mr Goodwin answers common patients’ questions about Botox
- What problems can Botox help to solve?
Botox can be a highly effective in improving the appearance of scowl lines at the top of the nose, crow’s feet at the edges of the eyes as well as forehead lines and the contour of the neck area. Also, when used very delicately, it can even out some facial asymmetry and improve smile contour.
Less well-known but equally effective is the use of Botox to reduce armpit and palm sweating.
- How do I know it will work for me?
Botox works for men and women at all stages of life. When we meet you for an initial consultation prior to treatment we will review the area you wish to improve and assess whether the Botox will create the freshening effect we hope for. We appreciate that most people want a freshening and smoothing of facial wrinkles without the classic ‘Botoxed’ look that we so often see on television.
- What actually is Botox?
Botox is a muscle paralysing treatment derived from bacteria. It is diluted to such low concentrations that its action can be very carefully controlled by an experienced practitioner. It can be used anywhere where muscle activity causes an effect we don’t want.
Historically, Botox was used to treat spastic paralysis but more recently it has been used for more aesthetic applications.
- Is Botox safe?
Botox has been used in medical therapy for more than 40 years and in aesthetic treatment since 1992. In that time, it has been injected over 100 million times.
There are some very rare medical conditions that could mean Botox isn’t appropriate, as well as equally rare allergies that would lead to some caution. However, the incidence of severe reaction is rare. Allergy to egg protein would suggest caution before use for the first time, although experience suggests its use is still safe.
Pregnant or breast-feeding patients should not receive Botox, not because it is unsafe, but purely because testing an ‘aesthetic’ drug on such patients is not encouraged. Having said that, extensive work on Botox administration has shown no dispersion of Botox beyond the site of injection, the rest of the body being completely unaffected.
- How often would I need to have Botox injections?
Botox typically wears off after four months following the first application. The blocking of the nerve signal to the muscle is reversed after this time as the nerve grows a whole new connection. Subsequent treatments last longer as the new connections are always a little weaker than the original.
This means that the longer patients have Botox, the more effective and long-lasting it becomes. I’ve seen effects last for up to six or seven months in some patients.
- Will I be able to move my face after my Botox treatment?
For me, perfect Botox is movement but no wrinkles. The fake, ‘Botoxed’ look can be achieved with ease but looks far from natural and will make the patient stand out in a crowd. It is easy to administer a little more to remove any residual unwanted movement as a second ‘top up’, if required.
- Will other people be able to tell I’ve had Botox injections?
People who are familiar with the effects of Botox will probably be able to guess that you’ve had treatment if they observe you closely, but most people will simply think that you look brighter and fresher. Because we are experienced in Botox treatment we are able to judge the right level of treatment to give a natural enhancement to your overall look, so you don’t need to worry about looking unnatural.
- How do I prepare myself for Botox treatment?
There isn’t very much preparation necessary. If you have recently been treated with Botox, please let us know as we need to know how much of the movement you have is natural and how much has been suppressed already. Otherwise, we strongly recommend that you leave your skin free of make-up for at least three hours after treatment and avoid physical exercise for the rest of the day
- Do the injections hurt?
I cannot remember a single occasion where a patient has said Botox was ‘worse than I thought it would be’. The needles are as fine as we have in medicine and the botox solution is very fluid. Nevertheless, I say to everyone “it won’t be the highlight of your day” but the percentage of patients who diligently return every 6 months would suggest the results are easily worth it.
- How much does Botox cost?
Botox costs between £180 and £300 pounds depending on how many areas are required and a typical treatment costs around £250. Additional ‘top ups’ to get the ideal result are all free so if the effect is not exactly what you wanted the first time, you are welcome to come back and we will do what we can to achieve it for you.
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