How and why does the skin change?
As we age the skin undergoes visible changes such as irregular pigmentation, increased pore size, sun damage and loss of elasticity. Natural substances such as collagen (the major structural protein in the skin), elastin (the protein which causes tissue to stretch) and hyaluronic acid (which gives the skin volume) all decrease as we get older. These changes are caused by both intrinsic (internal to the body) and extrinsic (external to the body) factors. Skin cell damage and degeneration can be caused by chronological and genetic processes as well as by cumulative environmental damage, such as that caused by years of exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation. The pursuit of a suntan is now known to be a major cause of damage to the skin. Also known as photoageing, it is believed to be responsible for almost 80% of the skin changes commonly attributed to the ageing process.
Other environmental factors, including cigarette smoke and pollution, may hasten ageing by producing free radicals. In large amounts, free radicals can damage cell membranes and interact with genetic material, possibly contributing to the development of a number of skin disorders, including wrinkles and, more importantly, skin cancer.
How and why do wrinkles form?
Many wrinkles occur when we use our muscles to form facial expressions. The wrinkles formed during these expressions are called dynamic wrinkles. For example, when we smile our eye wrinkles become prominent and when we frown the vertical lines between our eyebrows become noticeable.
When we are younger skin springs back to its initial position, but as we get older dynamic wrinkles remain on the skin to form static wrinkles; these are the wrinkles and folds that are present at rest. This process occurs because natural substances such as collagen, elastin and hyaluronic acid, that provide the skin with structure and volume, decrease with age. This, together with environmental factors such as exposure to sunlight, smoking and stress, all contribute to the creation of wrinkles and folds.
Does BOTOX® treatment cause more wrinkles to form?
BOTOX® will relax the facial muscles that cause expression lines. It does not cause more wrinkles to form. If you choose not to have further BOTOX® treatments your muscles will eventually return to normal activity and your wrinkles will gradually revert to their pre-treatment levels.
How do lips change with age?
The lips in particular have an extremely thin outer layer, which becomes progressively thinner as the body ages. Over time the corners of the mouth can begin to droop, the V-shaped area of the upper lips known as the Cupids Bow begins to flatten out and our lips lose their youthful fullness. Vertical lip lines can also begin to appear, causing your lipstick to bleed.
What is BOTOX®?
BOTOX® is a natural, purified protein that relaxes wrinkle-causing muscles, creating a rejuvenated appearance. The active ingredient in BOTOX® is derived from bacteria in much the same way penicillin is derived from mould.
How does BOTOX® work?
BOTOX® can be used to relax specific facial muscles that cause dynamic wrinkles (these are the wrinkles that are formed during facial expression). Once the muscles are relaxed, you cannot contract them and continue to make the undesirable facial expressions. Thus, the lines gradually smooth and new lines are prevented from forming.
What is involved in a Cosmetic Botox Treatment?
It is a non-surgical procedure whereby a small amount of BOTOX® is administered into selected facial muscles using a very fine needle. Generally, BOTOX® takes around 10 minutes. Discomfort is typically minimal and brief, and no anesthetic is usually required. The injection may sting for a few seconds but normal activities can be resumed soon after. After the injection, it takes 2-3 days for the BOTOX® to begin taking effect and about 7 days to see the full effect. The dose recommended for the treatment will vary depending on your individual situation and the severity of your lines.
How long does BOTOX® last?
The effect of BOTOX® can last up to 4 months before lines slowly begin to return. If you have repeat BOTOX®, the effect tends to last longer.
Will facial expressions be affected by having Botox?
BOTOX® works specifically on the muscles treated. This means that any muscles left untreated, including untreated facial muscles, should not be affected by the BOTOX® treatment.
Are there any side effects?
In addition to its use for cosmetic reasons, BOTOX® is also used to treat patients in a variety of therapeutic indications including cerebral palsy in children, movement disorders (head, neck, shoulder, face), and axillary hyperhidrosis (excessive underarm sweating). In the amounts used for the treatment of upper facial lines, the side effects are usually temporary and localised to the area of injection. Possible side effects include headaches, pain, burning/stinging, bruising, swelling or redness at the injection site, local muscle weakness including drooping eyelids/eyebrows, swollen eyelids, skin tightness, tingling sensations, aching/itching forehead, nausea and flu-like symptoms.
How long has BOTOX® been used?
BOTOX® Has been used in Australian and New Zealand for therapeutic purposes for over 20 years. It was first approved for use in Australia for movement disorders (eye & face) in 1993 and for eye spasms and crossed eyes in New Zealand in 1991.
Can BOTOX® be combined with other products and procedures?
Many people use a combination of cosmetic products and/or procedures to achieve a more rejuvenated appearance. BOTOX® is used to relax the muscles we use to form facial expressions, these wrinkles are called dynamic wrinkles. For example, when we smile our eye wrinkles become prominent and when we frown the vertical lines between our eyebrows become noticeable.
When we are young our skin springs back to its initial position, but as we get older dynamic wrinkles remain on the skin to form static wrinkles; these are the wrinkles and folds that are present at rest. Placed below the skin’s surface, dermal fillers are used to literally “fill in” or “plump up” the static wrinkles and folds and is often used in combination with BOTOX®.
What is a Dermal Filler?
A dermal (skin) filler is a gel which is carefully injected beneath the skin’s surface to diminish the depth of facial folds and wrinkles, and provide definition and volume to lips. The injectable gel acts as a skin “filler” to gently restore structure and volume to the skin. Dermal fillers are used to softly enhance your lips or to smooth out facial wrinkles and folds, and provide a natural look and feel.
What is a Dermal Filler made of?
Most dermal fillers are made from a natural complex sugar called Hyaluronic Acid. Hyaluronic Acid (HA) is found naturally within the tissues of living cells, including human skin. HA assists in skin hydration by attracting and holding water and also combines with collagen and elastin to provide skin structure and elasticity.
In its natural form, HA is a single chain sugar, which is naturally metabolised (broken down) by the body within days. It is important that a dermal filler is not metabolised by your body quickly, so that the results last for as long as possible. To achieve this, HA is cross-linked, a process by which individual sugar chains are linked together to form a kind of mesh which takes the body much longer to metabolise.
How does a Dermal Filler smooth out wrinkles?
Unlike BOTOX®, which treats dynamic wrinkles by relaxing the muscles that cause wrinkle-forming facial expressions, dermal fillers are placed below the skin’s surface to literally ‘fill in’ or ‘plump up’ the static wrinkles and folds that are present at rest. Dermal fillers are used to diminish the depth of wrinkles and create a smoother, more refreshed facial appearance that should last for at least 4 to 12 months.
How do Dermal Fillers enhance my lips?
Dermal fillers enhance the lip contour and lip definition by treating the border of the upper and/or lower lip. Treating the lip body can also enhance lip volume. The results should last 4-12 months.
What does a Dermal Filler procedure involve?
A dermal filler treatment is a non-surgical procedure. A topical cream or local anaesthetic may be administered to help numb the area being treated. The procedure should cause only minimal disruption to your daily routine and the majority of people resume their normal activities after the procedure.
How long does a Dermal Filler treatment last?
The longevity of treatment with a dermal filler varies from person to person depending on how quickly your body naturally metabolises (breaks down) HA. Generally the results should last for 4-12 months.
Are there any side effects from Dermal Filler?
Because the HA in the dermal filler is naturally present within the skin and not derived from animals there is no need for an allergy pre-test before treatment. HA dermal fillers have been clinically studied for many years with many clinical trials. The injection itself should cause minimal discomfort. Side effects are generally temporary injection site-related effects including swelling, bruising and redness. Less frequently temporary pain, firmness, lumps, itching and discolouration can also occur at the injection site. The majority of people resume their normal activities immediately following the procedure.