Where Not To Inject Botox
The first time I saw someone with an obviously “botched” Botox injection was at my boyfriend’s high school graduation party. The poor kid had been sitting there for what seemed like forever getting his wrinkles frozen away by the teacher who administered the procedure. He looked more embarrassed than anyone should have to sit through not only because he didn’t look any better after all that time, but also because he felt so self-conscious about it! And this wasn’t even the guy whose graduation picture would be plastered on everyone’s refrigerator door come summertime – it was the dude in front of him!
If you’ve never gotten your fill from watching people get their faces frozen with botox, then consider yourself lucky. But if you’re one of those people who has seen others receive injections and are interested in giving it a try, here are some things NOT to do when injecting your own Botox:
1) Don’t use an unlicensed practitioner. This goes without saying, but using a licensed medical professional (doctor, nurse or physician assistant) ensures that they know how to administer the drug safely. If you’re going to go the “do it myself” route, make sure you ask plenty of questions and take note of their responses. They can tell you whether or not they’ve done similar procedures before, as well as give you tips on where to place the needle. You don’t want to risk accidentally putting the needle in the blood vessels or nerve endings, which could result in permanent scarring, blindness and other serious complications.
2) Don’t inject into areas that aren’t supposed to be treated. Botox isn’t meant to be used anywhere outside of the facial muscles. For example, injecting under the eyes shouldn’t happen because the muscle underneath the eye doesn’t move up and down like the rest of our facial muscles. Also, injecting around the nose is considered risky business because the nerves running along the sides of the nose might end up being affected instead of just the ones on the bottom half of the face.
3) Don’t wait too long to start injecting. It takes anywhere from two weeks to three months for the full effects of Botox to kick in depending on the person and the amount of Botox used. Waiting too long to see results may mean you’re getting less out of each session.
4) Don’t mix different types of Botox together. Different brands of Botox contain varying amounts of active ingredient and therefore affect your skin differently. Some brands react badly when combined with other Botox products, while some might cause allergic reactions or pain. Make sure you talk to your doctor before mixing them.
5) Don’t overuse Botox. One reason why many doctors advise against using Botox is because it wears off within four to six weeks. After that period of time, the effects of the toxin will begin to diminish. Once again, though, if you’re going DIY, make sure you keep track of the dates when your treatments were performed and check your progress every few days during that period. If your wrinkles haven’t started to soften yet, it’s safe to say that the treatment hasn’t worked properly.
6) Don’t use alcohol based solutions such as rubbing alcohol or benzyl peroxide prior to receiving your Botox treatment. These substances dry out your skin and encourage bacteria growth, making your infection prone and increasing the likelihood that something bad will occur.
7) Don’t skip out on follow-up appointments. While you might think you’ll save money skipping Botox treatments altogether, you’ll actually find that the results won’t last as long and that your overall quality of service will suffer. Plus, if anything does go wrong, you’ll be glad you kept up with your regular visits.
8) Don’t pick a filler that’s too thick. There are several kinds of fillers available today. Dermal fillers, such as Restylane® and Juvaderm®, work best when placed between layers of collagen rather than replacing lost volume. Both are good choices, but if you decide to choose one, make sure you consult your plastic surgeon first. Filler materials like HylaForm™, Perlane® and Sculptra® generally replace missing tissue and subdue lines and wrinkles. However, most of these products are made from human tissues, which means that they can potentially trigger an immune response in patients. As a general rule, avoid dermal fillers unless absolutely necessary.
9) Don’t go overboard with Botox. Too much Botox can lead to a “frozen” or expressionless face, asymmetrical issues and drooping. Luckily, since Botox is temporary, any of these mishaps will eventually wear off. Just remember to stick to your treatment plan and schedule appointments often enough to ensure that nothing gets left behind.
10) Don’t forget to hydrate! Your body needs water to help flush toxins and helps your skin retain moisture. Take extra care to drink lots of fluids when you’re getting Botox injections. Keep a bottle of water handy during your appointment and sip throughout the procedure.
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