The Truth About Botox and Filler

When patients want a refreshed look that isn’t so obvious, they often consider the popular—but perhaps not completely understood—option. According to the University of California San Francisco, it’s estimated that 11 million people worldwide have received Botox treatments. Botox reduces fine lines, and is often used to reverse crow’s feet, frown lines, and forehead lines. Other similar neurotoxins have also come to market including Dysport, Xeomin, and Daxxify, and they all work in a similar fashion. For simplicity’s sake, we will refer to these chemicals at “Tox”. Speculation and misconceptions surround tox. Is it safe? Will I look frozen? Does it hurt? Everything you might need to answer these questions, quash your fears, and help you learn the truth about tox is below!

Is it safe?

One of the biggest speculations we hear about tox is whether it’s safe. The short and long answer is simply yes. Tox has been around for over twenty years and used for reasons beyond just aesthetic, like treating medical conditions such as cerebral palsy, TMJ, and migraines. But it’s also important to remember that tox is a true chemical (botulinum toxin type A and variants) and can pose consequences when not administered appropriately. At Lamb Medical, every tox treatment is conducted by a highly skilled hand with proper training and protocols in place.

Will I look plastic?

We’ve all seen images of tox gone wrong, and a lot of fear we hear from patients is that they “don’t want to look like a deer in headlights” or “so frozen I can’t move my face”. Another big fear, and also an important measure of privacy, is that patients worry that other people will know they had treatment done.

The main goal of tox is not to make someone look so different they’re not recognizable, but simply provide a refreshed look and slow down the clock. Tox isn’t a facelift, the final results should be natural and graceful. Our team listens intently to how patients want to look, and that determines how much tox we use and the pattern or technique we choose to achieve the results each unique patient seeks.

Are Tox and filler the same?

People often confuse tox and filler, but the two are quite different. Tox relaxes the underlying muscles and by doing so, the skin will heal and repair when it is not being repeatedly creased. Relaxing the underlying muscle does not take effect right away – tox can take anywhere from two to seven days or even up to two weeks to show results. When you leave a Botox appointment, you would have no idea it was even done! But it’s exceptional for the diminishment of wrinkles, and effects can last 3-4 months (Daxxify up to 6 months).

Filler, on the other hand, is hyaluronic acid. Composed of a gel that resembles collagen in the skin, filler started as a naturally occurring product that was injected into spaces created by aging facial features. Tox relaxes muscles, while filler truly fills in spaces by contouring and adding volume. Another difference is that filler is apparent immediately and patients receive instant gratification. Lips are the most common area to receive filler, but filler is also used to soften the marionette lines in the corners of the mouth, the parentheses that form between the nose and mouth, hollows in the temple area, and the sagging apples of the cheek. Filler can be helpful in scar revision as well. Neither tox nor filler is permanent. Filler is also reversible in that it can be dissolved if it does not settle well or if it is overdone. Reversal is rare, however. Most patients are thrilled with instantaneous results that look beautiful and natural!

What does treatment look like?

Both tox and filler are nonsurgical, so there’s little to no downtime except possible bruising and slight swelling. Lamb Medical takes pride in making the experience as comfortable and pleasant as possible. Treatments are easy to undergo and can help patients age more gracefully – and both procedures are shorter than your average yoga class!

Tox usually only takes about a half an hour of a patient’s time, and the procedure part of that is only 10 or 15 minutes. The majority of time spent with patients during a tox appointment is communication. These conversations ensure we are talking about how the patient wants to look, assessing their needs, and caring for any medical issues to ensure the procedure is as easy and problem free as possible.

Filler takes a little bit longer, approximately 45 minutes since the skin needs to be numbed. A little bit of swelling and bruising may occur with filler. Not usually enough to miss work or a social occasion, but we recommend patients don’t come in for a procedure right before big life events.

How often do I need Botox?

What’s important to remember with any injectable is that it is not permanent. Your body will eventually break each of the chemicals down – all muscle function will return in three or four months, pacing your wrinkle to original speeds. To continuously control your wrinkles, you need to do tox regularly. We work with patients to develop a treatment plan that works with their schedule to help them reach the goals within their budget. Those who come regularly do report that wrinkles continue to soften and fade. Patients who do not want to make as frequent visits or who have not seen long-lasting results are recommended to check out Daxxify, an injectable that’s effects last on average six months.

How often do I need Filler?

Filler lasts anywhere from six to 24 months depending on the type of filler used. Patients can come in for more filler in as little as two weeks if they did not receive full correction of the area treated. Patients may also come more quickly if they are getting other areas treated. In short, filler does not necessarily have a predictable time frame. Each patient is unique in their goals and needs and we are passionate about helping them figure out the best course of action.

If you’re curious about starting your tox and filler journey, please drop by our office for a consultation or call us at 724-969-LAMB (5262). One of our lovely, trusted, and trained staff will be happy to discuss what you can expect and what you’d like to achieve, and what a treatment plan might look like for you. We’re here for you every step of the way on your aesthetic journey!