Where can Botox be used?
Botulinum toxin (commonly referred to as Botox/Dysport in South Africa) is a purified neurotoxin that prevents the release of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine from axon endings at the neuromuscular junction and thereby causing paralysis.
In aesthetic medicine, Botox is commonly used on various parts of the body to bring about a variety of aesthetic benefits, including:
- Soles of feet
- Palms of hands
- Head / Forehead
Common Areas For Botox Use
On the head, it can be strategically injected to bring about an improvement for individuals struggling with migraine headaches.
On the face, Botox can be used in multiple areas with good effect.
It is designed for use, in the upper one-third of the face, to bring about a relaxation of the muscles of expression.
When injected here, it causes a reduction in the appearance of lines and wrinkles in these areas and this translates into a more youthful/rested appearance.
It is commonly injected in the frontalis (forehead ) muscle and achieves a relaxation in the lines caused when raising the eyebrows.
In the glabella (frown lines in between the eyebrows) it is usually injected at 5 points to bring about softening in this area. This treatment yields great results if a client has a strong frown or has the undesirable line that runs down between the eyebrows. Regular use of Botox in this area can result in the line disappearing significantly/almost altogether.
Many individuals enjoy having a slightly raised/arched brow. Botox used in this area achieves a very desirable arched brow. The degree of the arch is dependent on the number of units injected.
Some clients struggle with “bunny lines”. These are lines that form on either side of the nose when we smile or express ourselves. Botox is a suitable treatment option for this troublesome area.
Ask most women which area of their face bothers them, and many will reply … crows feet! These are lines that form on the side of the eyes and become apparent as we age or if we express ourselves quite strongly in this area of the face. It is quite a bothersome area for clients as it seems to attract undesired attention to the face. If the eyes are the windows to our souls, then it is easy to see why so many people are keen to have this area looking flawless!
Botox can also be used in the lower two-thirds of the face with good effect.
Botox is a good treatment choice for teeth grinding when injected into the masseter muscles bilaterally (this is the large muscle on either side of the face that assists with biting down on food). With teeth grinding, these become enlarged and can become quite painful for the client.
Aesthetically, there are some individuals and even some population groups (Asians in particular) that tend to have a more square/boxy jawline. This type of jawline tends to make a female face appear more strong and masculine. Botox, when injected into the masseters, not only assists with teeth grinding but also reduces the size/bulk of the masseter muscle. This tends to give the face a narrower, feminine appearance and is more aesthetically appealing to the eye.
Gummy Smile / Drooping Lip
A very common use for Botox is to inject the toxin underneath the upper lip. Using it in this way reduces a “gummy smile” – this is the appearance of the gums just below the upper lip that is visible when an individual smile. Injecting Botox here causes a relaxation of the orbicular oris muscle and brings about a more natural, aesthetically pleasing smile.
Often we have overactivity in the depressor angular oris muscle. Overactivity in this muscle causes a downward drooping of the side of the lips. This can be corrected quite effectively by injecting just a few units of Botox in the muscle. It can often be very effective and obviate the need for dermal filler in this area at times.
Botox can be injected into the chin to reduce the appearance of a “knobbly chin”. This golf ball-like appearance is often related to muscle overactivity and injecting a small quantity on either side can soften the appearance considerably.
Clinical applications outside of the face
Botox injected along with the platysmal bands on the neck can result in a significant improvement in the lines around the neck and soften the strained appearance that occurs around the platysmal bands as a client ages. This procedure of treating neck/décolleté is often referred to in aesthetic medicine as the “Nefertiti Neck Lift”.
Hyperhydrosis (excessive sweating)
For many clients that struggle with hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating), Botox can bring about significant relief to an often embarrassing and unpleasant condition. Although the number of units required is a bit more, as compared to treating an individual area on the face, the results can last for up to 6-months at a time. Botox for hyperhidrosis can be injected into the palms of hand, underarms and soles of feet.
To ensure the best Botox results, it is always recommended that clients consult with their aesthetic practitioner for a detailed assessment. This ensures that the practitioner has met with the client physically, understands the client’s aesthetic needs, is able to correct any misinformation, understands the clients budget, formulates a treatment plan and most importantly manage a clients expectation of the aesthetic outcome. This inspires confidence in both the doctor and patient, providing a base for a long-lasting relationship together. You might also be interested in dermal fillers instead of botox, depending on your needs.