Well, where did 2018 go? Happy New Year (or as a Scottish client recently said, “Good New Year” – far less pressure than Happy)…!
Off to a flying start
It’s been a busy start to 2019. As well as returning patients rebooking, I’ve been contacted by many new clients looking for treatments. I’m humbled by everybody that books with me for a first consultation, so thank you!
What has been especially interesting so far is the overwhelming request to look as natural as possible. Just as well for me, as this fits in with my preferences as a practitioner.
I thought in this blog I’d address some of the most common questions and misconceptions I hear at consultations. If you’re planning on booking yours soon, I hope this helps.
A brief history of Botox
Botox (or Botulinum Toxin Type A to give the drug its correct name) was first used in the early 80s to treat blepharospasm (lid spasm) and strabismus (cross eyes).
Practitioners noted smoother skin where the drug was placed and the drug’s use evolved into aesthetics for treatment of lines and wrinkles as we know today. History lesson over.
The science-y bit
We are all born able to make facial expressions but eventually those facial expressions leave lines that are visible even when we are at rest. Typically these manifest themselves as frown lines, forehead lines, and crow’s feet. By injecting Botox into the underlying muscles responsible for these lines we can create a smoother, more relaxed appearance.
(Side note: I am noticing younger clients with such lines visible at rest and wonder whether the exposure to small screens from such a young age contributes to this? I have no data to back that up with by the way, it’s just a thought. As my own daughters keep reminding me “screens aren’t harmful, mum, it was on the news”. Thanks to every news channel for broadcasting that headline on the school run last week…)
Where can Botox be used?
Botox is most often used on the upper section of the face, though it can be used in the lower face, too. For example, for lip lines (AKA smoker’s lines) and to help relax the corners of the mouth (the down-turned mouth).
I don’t find the effects to last as long in the lower face, though. Also, relaxing the muscles above the upper lip can feel a bit strange. For example, when sucking through a straw or forming the “O” sound when we speak.
Nose to mouth lines
The next most common question I hear is can nose to mouth lines can be treated with Botox? In a nutshell… no.
These lines are not caused by muscle activity. These are facial contours that we are born with (otherwise we would look flat faced like my Shih Tzu dog – cute in a canine way!). I describe one of the contributing factors to these lines like so:
Imagine your skull is your extendable dining room table (the one with flaps at either end to seat more people) and the skin is the tablecloth. As we age the facial bones move…this is the equivalent of gradually putting the ends of our dining room table away and allowing the table cloth to ripple. The skin ripples move in the same way as its supporting structure moves and changes. One of the most noticeable features of this process is the appearance of more crease-like and deeper nose to mouth lines.
The treatment? Change the structure with the use of dermal fillers. I find cheek fillers particularly effective to provide support and lift to the lower face. Look in the mirror and gently pull your cheeks diagonally and see the lift to the lower face.
Booking your first consultation
It looks like I’ve babbled on too long, as ever! Please do book in for a consultation if you’d like to discuss further. The session is FREE (who doesn’t love free stuff?) and is totally without pressure and obligation.
You don’t need to have ever had a treatment before, and you don’t need to be convinced you’re going to book one, either. We may even decide you don’t need anything! I allow an hour as you may well have realised there is lots to talk about and lots of options (and yes I talk a lot!).
All I have left to say is bring on 2019!