Botox is a popular medical treatment used for a variety of purposes from wrinkle reduction and prevention to the treatment of headaches. Despite proven and effective benefits of Botox, there is still a huge misconception surrounding the wrinkle eliminating treatment based on media publications showing celebrities with botched surgeries and lazy eyes. How these misconceptions have come about is unclear, but we were able to collect some insight from Dr. Schwarzburg at Skinly Aesthetics, an expert in the field of cosmetic medicine in New York, who helped us debunk the most common myths about the treatment.
It will make you look like a blowup doll
A huge misconception of Botox is that it will make you look like a blowup doll. While it is true that too much of certain treatments can have that effect, Botox is not one of them. In order to start looking like a quote on quote blowup doll, you would need several fillers (or illegal substances) injected into your face, along with a possible face lift. Even this is fairly uncommon as a trained and thoughtful professional would never let it get to this point in the first place. With this in mind, be sure to find a reputable doctor who will not let this happen to you.
Similar to the worry about ending up with that blowup doll look, people have serious concerns about ending up with a botched face. Not too long ago there was a popular influencer on social media who posted a photo of herself after having received Botox injections. Viewers were shocked as one of her eyes was visibly “lazy”, which is a perfect example of botched Botox. While this is possible, if injected properly with the right amount of units, this kind of reaction should never occur. Botox works by essentially paralyzing the muscle in which it is injected, restricting muscle contractions that typically lead to wrinkle formation. If too much of the product is injected in the wrong place, it is possible for the muscle to relax too much, leading to this kind of result. Again, make sure you get your injections from a trained professional who knows how much and where to place the injections to prevent this from happening.
It smooths out wrinkles by puffing up the face with an injection under your skin
This entire statement is completely false. As mentioned above, Botox works by paralyzing the muscle in which it is injected. A filler on the other hand, adds volume to the injected area. Once Botox is injected into the muscle, there is no added volume to the area.
It is dangerous – Paralysis and Botulism
While it is true that Botox paralyzes the muscle, on average, its effects last 3 – 5 months. In addition, it will not paralyze a muscle that it wasn’t injected into. This means that getting Botox in your forehead to eliminate a few lines, will not paralyze your lower face, for example. Another scary rumor is that Botox will cause botulism. Botox is a neurotoxin that yes, could technically cause Botulism, however would require an enormous amount of units that would never be injected into anyone. Just to clarify how much Botox would be needed to cause this – the average amount of units used per area to reduce wrinkles is 20 units. It is documented that in order to cause botulism, you would need to get around 2000 units, one hundred times more than the standard amount of Botox. On top of that, it would have to be inadvertently injected into the bloodstream to even cause that kind of damage in the first place. All in all – botulism is not something to be concerned about when getting a few units of Botox to get rid of those frown lines!
It is expensive
Botox prices vary depending on how many units you get and where you go to get the treatment. Depending on what you consider expensive, Botox can be pretty affordable if you are willing to spend $200 to eliminate the wrinkles on your forehead. Of course, $200 worth of Botox won’t always get you the results you want, as everyone’s face is different and everyone needs to get the number of units appropriate for their face. Most clinics offer payment plans for people who don’t want to pay for the entire treatment in one shot. Depending on what you are getting the Botox injections for, you may even be able to get it covered by your insurance. Botox can be used not only for cosmetic and aesthetic purposes, but for medical conditions such as headaches, TMJ, and hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating). If you are getting Botox for medical purposes, check with your provider to see if your treatment can be covered by insurance.
Overall Botox is a very useful neurotoxin that can be used for aesthetic and medical purposes. The general consensus is to get your Botox from an experienced injector who knows what they are doing. While it is always possible to have a strange reaction due to improper injection or too many units, keep in mind that even in the rare case that you should experience a lazy eye, Botox will wear off within 3 – 5 months. And again – if your injector knows how much and where to place it, you are in good hands!