Botox injections have become one of the most popular non-surgical treatment for wrinkles.
I was always afraid of getting Botox injections. The thought of putting something foreign into my body scared me. Aside from that, I saw too many frozen faces and that was not something I wanted to replicate. Then I turned 60, and suddenly I didn’t think about the risk as much as I thought about the results.
Doctors Give Botox Injections the Thumbs Up
Botox has been around for about fifteen years. For me, this was long enough for doctors to gain their expertise and I felt ready to experiment. I’d spent almost ten years pondering the decision to get injections. During this time span, I had many conversations with various doctors. I consulted with two dermatologists, my allergist, and even my ear nose and throat doctor. All the doctors I had spoken to seemed to feel that Botox injections were relatively safe for me. On a side note, my internist has referred to me as having a hyper personality, so needless to say she was not one of the doctors I consulted. Unlike many of my friends that “just went with it”, I was much more apprehensive.
Taking the Leap
My first injection wasn’t planned. I was getting a microdermabrasion treatment with an esthetician I’d been going to for several years. She was very aware of my all fears and hesitations. We had talked often about botox injections, but like I mentioned, I was more eager to talk about it than I was to get them. When my microdermabrasion was finished, she asked me if I was ready to give Botox a try. I was so relaxed from my treatment I said yes. My dermatologist then entered the room and injected a few units into my forehead.
I immediately called my daughter to tell her because I was excited. The next day, my children came over for a birthday dinner. Not one of them even noticed, which was exactly what I was hoping for. After a few days, the Botox smoothed my wrinkles and I was pleased with the results. Nonetheless, I was back asking for more a few months later.
Where I Received the Injections
The most important area of concern for me was the vertical lines between my eyebrows. After years of squinting from the sun, those lines were quite deep. The area around my eyes did not bother me as much. Although, once I tried injections around my crow’s feet, I liked how it softened up the lines.
What Does Botox Do
Aside from smoothing out lines and wrinkles on your face, Botox is also used to reduce excessive sweating and for relief with migraine headaches. My ear, nose, and throat doctor even mentioned that Botox injections may help with my sinus issues.
How Much Does it Cost and How Long Will it Last?
Most offices will charge per unit and the cost can range between $10-$15. The number of units you need is determined by the depth of a wrinkle and what you are looking to achieve. This is usually discussed previously with your doctor. The good news is results have been known to last longer after you have injected the same area a few times. Most injections will last anywhere between three to six months. This is also based on the time you spend in the sun and your physical activity. Excessive smoking and alcohol consumption will also play a role in how long Botox will last.
What are the Side Effects?
Okay, this is what really terrifies me as with any medication I take. We have all seen the commercials where they show a person happy and enjoying life because of some miracle drug they are taking, and then, just when you’re convinced the medication is a wonderful alternative to living with a chronic illness, they read off the list of life-threatening side effects.
I can’t even write about the severe side effects of Botox. As with all other medications, they do exist. By law, and for us as consumers, they need to be disclosed. It is up to you and your doctor to make the call as to whether you would be at risk. I can tell you that my side effects were minimal. I had a small amount of redness and spot of swelling where the injection was administered for my crow’s feet. It lasted for a few hours and that was it.
How Many Units Do You Need?
I recommend that you decide with your doctor what is best for you, as an individual. Many times there will be offices or day spas that routinely administer a preset amount to all their patients. Each of us has different areas of concern, so make sure that your doctor personalizes the number of units specifically for you. You can always start out small and then get more.
Will I Continue to Get Botox?
Yes, for now I’m happy with the results. For the record, I think they did help somewhat with keeping my sinus headaches away. Mostly, I liked seeing the wrinkles disappear!