Botox was first approved as a cosmetic drug in 2002. That feels like a long time ago! At that time, it was not the first cosmetic injectable, nor was it the last. For the past almost-twenty years, though, it has certainly become the most well-known. Since gaining FDA-approval, Botox has helped millions of people manage their aging process without surgery. Every year for the past several years, more than 7 million Botox injections have occurred in the U.S. alone. Many of these treatments are for first-time users. If you’re new to Botox and want to see how this cosmetic injectable can help you love your look even more, you probably also wish you knew what to expect. We’re going to walk you through that here.
Your First Botox Appointment, Step One
It’s a common misconception that you can call a Botox provider, schedule your appointment, and walk in to immediately get injections. That’s not how it works. We want to make sure that Botox is right for you before we jump right into treatment. We do this by taking a few minutes to talk with you about what your cosmetic concerns are and what you would like to achieve. During this conversation, we may discover that your lines and creases aren’t related to muscle movements at all but volume loss. In that instance, we would recommend dermal fillers, not Botox. The original wrinkle-reducing injectable is commonly used to smooth dynamic wrinkles like frown lines, forehead lines, and crow’s feet. Botox can also raise a drooping brow line.
Step Two, Your Injections
Wrinkle-smoothing with Botox is easy. The action-phase of your first appointment takes only a few minutes. You will not need an anesthetic because injections are administered with a very small needle that feels like a tiny pinch. This sensation goes away nearly as soon as it’s felt. After the first injection, most patients breathe a sigh of relief, realizing that they built up the pain-factor far more than necessary. Even with a dozen or so injections, patients tolerate Botox treatment very well.
Recovery and Results
While Botox treatment is easy, it is not instantaneous; not like dermal fillers. It takes longer to see results because the botulinum toxin must get absorbed into the muscle and, once there, must turn off the receptors that receive neuro-commands to contract. This can take 5 to 7 days for full effect. The results of Botox treatment last 3 to 6 months in most cases. Touch-ups can be scheduled as often as every three months, with the average being four.