Advancements in medical technology make it possible for anybody to regain a youthful appearance by reducing facial wrinkles and fine lines. For decades, a facelift was the most common procedure for reversing the signs of aging. Now, Botox and facial fillers offer safe and effective, minimally invasive solutions for patients who want to avoid risky surgery. While, at the same time, offering a more affordable cost.

How Botox Works

Botox is a neurotoxin that removes wrinkles by causing temporary muscle paralysis. Physicians typically inject this substance into specific muscles in the upper facial area, especially on the forehead, around the eyes, and between the eyebrows. Botox prevents the muscles from pulling on the skin, which in turn, causes wrinkles. The effects usually last for approximately four months.

How Facial Fillers Work

Facial fillers are also injected, but they do not affect the muscles. Instead, they fill in lines, wrinkles, and grooves underneath the skin to smooth out the skin’s surface. Fillers are also useful for making lips plumper and lifting the temple, jawline, and cheeks. Different types of fillers work better on certain parts of the face.

Restylane and Juvéderm are hyaluronic acid fillers. Hyaluronic acid is found naturally in the body with the highest concentrations in the joints and eyes. Side effects include bruising, swelling and redness at the injection sites; however, complications are rare. Sometimes the filler causes tiny bumps to form under the skin, but they usually disappear over time.

Synthetic wrinkle fillers include Radiesse, Sculptra and silicone. The effects of these substances last longer than hyaluronic acid; unfortunately, in the hands of an unskilled physician, they can cause disfigurement.

The third type of facial filler is collagen, which some people believe produces the most natural looking results. These fillers come from animal sources, so there is a high risk of having an allergic reaction. Patients must undergo allergy testing before having collagen injections. Collagen produces only short-term results with breakdown beginning to occur approximately one month after treatment.

Patients should consult with an experienced cosmetic surgeon like Dr. Patt, to discuss the options and which ones will work best for them. Many medical professionals will suggest using a combination of Botox and different types of fillers to achieve the best results.