Wrinkle Relaxing with Botulinum Toxin Type A (i.e., Botox/Bocouture/Azzalure)
What is Botulinum Toxin Type A?
Botulinum Toxin Type A is a naturally occurring protein which comes from a bacteria known as Clostridium Botulinum. As with many drugs in use today (such as penicillin) it is made available in a purified form and is therefore a very safe and effective treatment. It is currently used widely throughout the NHS for treating a wide range of medical conditions. It is a muscle relaxing medicine which can be injected in to muscles to help them relax. As you age, repeated contraction of facial muscles causes lines and wrinkles to appear on the face. The injection of botulinum toxin into these muscles relaxes them, keeping them from contracting. This results in a smoother appearance of the overlying lines and wrinkles. There are many different types of botulinum toxin formulations available. Most commonly people are familiar with the brand Botox®, but there is also Vistabel, Dysport, Azzalure, Xeomin and Bocouture.
What can be treated with botulinum toxin type A injections?
Injections can be used in a number of different areas around the face and neck that require rejuvenation but they are most commonly used for the treatment of wrinkles in three main areas of the upper face:
Frown Lines: small doses placed in the area around the bridge of the nose can create a fresher appearance.
Crow’s Feet: the delicate area around the corner of the eyes can be injected to minimise the fine lines that appear here when you smile.
Horizontal Forehead Lines: Injections across the forehead reduces the appearance of the horizontal lines that occur when you raise your eyebrows.
A consultation with Una will help you decide whether this is a suitable treatment for you and if so, which areas of your face could be treated based on the results you want to achieve. During the consultation you will be asked about your medical history, whether you are currently taking any medicines, and whether you have had any facial treatments in the past. Although Botulinum toxin type A is a very safe medicine when used correctly, there is always the possibility of side effects and Una will discuss these with you so that you are well informed to make a decision.
Please remember that all Botulinum toxins are prescription only medicines (POMs) and can therefore only be prescribed by medically qualified professionals who (i) possess a prescribing qualification and (ii) carry out a a full face-to-face consultation with you.
How is the treatment carried out?
Consultation and treatments are held on separate days for new clients. If you decide that you would like to go ahead with this treatment Una will clinically clean your skin and then use a very small, thin needle to inject small amounts of the drug into specific facial muscles in the most accurate and pain-free way. Most people do not find the injections too uncomfortable.
How long will the results last?
It can take up 10 days to start seeing the effects of Botox or similar injections but generally clients start to see an effect from around 3 days. These results generally last up to 3 months, however this can vary significantly between each individual. Movement often begins to return from about 8 weeks onwards. The treatment effects gradually wears off, and your wrinkles will gradually go back to how they were prior to your initial treatment. They will not appear in a worse condition than when you began the treatments. Una will always see you at 2-3 weeks after your injections to review the treatment. It is important to always allow at least 12 weeks between treatments with any brand of Botulinum toxin.
Are there any side effects?
All treatments carry a degree of risk and these will be discussed with you at consultation and prior to any treatment being agreed. Botulinum toxin treatment should be administered by a registered healthcare professional with specialist training.