Botox is one of the world’s most famous brand names, right up there with Coke and Band-Aids. Because of its worldwide appeal, it’s easy to assume Botox has been around for a long time. That is true, but not for the uses you know. Botox has been around for decades for the treatment of involuntary eyelid spasms, bladder control issues, even treatment of TMJ disorder.
But it was 2002 when Botox left the realm of medicine and entered pop culture. That was the year the FDA approved Botox for the cosmetic treatment of wrinkles and lines on the upper third of the face. Since its initial aesthetic introduction, Botox has been the most popular cosmetic procedure every year, including the most recent statistics from 2016. It is far and away the most performed procedure, surgical or non-surgical, the world over. Considering Botox’s loyal celebrity following, a star on the Walk of Fame could be in order.
Dr. Jensen provides Botox, along with a competitor named Dysport, for his Utah patients.
Dynamic wrinkles and muscle contractions
There’s no secret to Botox’s popularity — it works. Botox is the king of what are called “dynamic wrinkles,” wrinkles that are formed by muscle contractions. Dynamic wrinkles are crow’s feet, frown lines, and the 11s. They occur on the expressive area of the face, from the eyes up through the brows and forehead.
What about wrinkles that show themselves all the time? These wrinkles are known as “static wrinkles.” They are caused by sun damage, environmental factors, and general aging of the skin. Botox has no effect on static wrinkles; these are the domain of dermal fillers such as Juvederm.
How does Botox perform its magic?
Dermal fillers “fill” in the wrinkle from beneath. Botox works in an entirely different manner. Botox is called a neuromodulator. It is actually made from the botulinum toxin type A, the same bacteria that cause botulism. In the 1950s scientists discovered that the botulinum toxin, when used in very small amounts, could temporarily paralyze a muscle. It does this by blocking the signals from the nerve in the muscle to the brain. Without those messages, the brain doesn’t tell the muscle to contract.
When you perform everyday behaviors such as squinting or frowning, muscles contract as part of the behavior, particularly those around the eyes. Over time as your skin ages and loses some of its elastin (which helps keep the skin supple), these contractions cause wrinkles to show on the skin surface above the muscles. Botox blocks those muscles from contracting, so the wrinkles either disappear or their appearance is dramatically reduced.
Because Botox temporarily paralyzes the injected muscle, it’s of paramount importance to have an injector who has extensive knowledge of facial anatomy and the muscles that drive expressions. This is where you can trust Dr. Jensen’s board certification and 12 years in practice.
How long will my wrinkles be gone?
First off, Botox results are not immediate. It takes from three to four days for the botulinum toxin to effectively paralyze the muscle. From there, the wrinkles will disappear for around four months. At that point, the muscles will start contracting again and the wrinkles will return. That’s when it is time to schedule another Botox session with Dr. Jensen to maintain your results.
Interested in saying goodbye to your crow’s feet, the 11s, and forehead wrinkles for the New Year? Call Dr. Jensen at 385-424-4567 to make your appointment.