If you have considered undergoing a cosmetic procedure to improve the appearance of aging skin, you probably know that sorting through the seemingly endless treatment choices can be overwhelming.
Non-surgical injectable therapies, such as dermal fillers and wrinkle relaxing agents, have increased in popularity in recent years. At first glance it may seem that all injectable treatments achieve results in a similar way. However, these non-invasive options can be quite distinct. Unlike dermal fillers, which plump the skin, wrinkle relaxers halt the formation of lines by temporarily paralyzing the facial muscles. As a result, creases and expression lines are smoothed out, giving a more youthful finish. The appropriate use of wrinkle relaxers is an art; a precise balance between movement and wrinkle reduction should be achieved from the treatment. When this balance is present, patients will avoid the artificial frozen look, and just appear more refreshed.
Today, wrinkle-relaxing procedures are considered a safe and favored option for people with the etched-in wrinkles associated with everyday facial movement.
About BOTOX®, Dysport® & Xeomin
At his New York office, Dr. Westreich uses the three leading wrinkle relaxing treatments, BOTOX® Cosmetic, Xeomin®, and Dysport® to reduce the appearance of dynamic lines, specifically:
- Crow’s feet or Smile lines
- Furrowed brow (the 11s)
- Horizontal creases in the forehead
- Banded creases in the neck
- Low eyebrows
- Other movement associated lines, such as chin dimpling, lines at the sides of the nose, under eye bulges, and downturned mouth corners.
BOTOX® Cosmetic, Xeomin®, and Dysport® treatments contain botulinum toxin type A, the active agent that prompts muscular relaxation. Although the mechanism of action is similar, subtle differences in clinical effect may occur. Dr. Westreich will choose the wrinkle relaxer most appropriate for the patient, based on his aesthetic goals, patient preference or sensitivities, and other criteria. All treatments are highly effective and can provide similar results.
- BOTOX® was originally developed for therapeutic uses–such as migraine relief and the control of eyelid spasms. BOTOX® Cosmetic has since secured a place for cosmetic use. Today, BOTOX® Cosmetic is one of the most widely used cosmetic treatments offered. After treatment, patients can see improvements within 3-4 days of the treatment and, in general, can enjoy the benefits of a single treatment for approximately 3-4 months, sometimes longer.
- Dysport® is a related but newer wrinkle relaxing product than BOTOX® Cosmetic. In some patients, Dysport® may be better tolerated and give marginally faster results than BOTOX® Cosmetic. Like BOTOX® Cosmetic, Dysport® can last for 3-4 months.
- Xeomin® is another product, which has been available for use in the last few years. It’s clinical effect and onset is similar to Botox® Cosmetic and Dysport®.
During treatment, Dr. Westreich will inject the wrinkle relaxer into the muscle tissue with a very fine needle. To control the outcome, he administers the substance in small doses, precisely calibrating what is needed to induce the muscles to relax. The injections produce little discomfort and can be done in a short office visit. Because the wrinkle relaxing procedures are non-invasive, no downtime is required.
Dr. Westreich specializes in achieving a naturally softer appearance through a subtle use of wrinkle relaxers. Using his original Smoothtox procedure, Dr. Westreich makes injections into selective areas of the muscle, resulting in a more targeted and refined outcome. His technique ensures that the muscles are not overly treated, thus preventing the unwanted frozen look. During your consultation, Dr. Westreich will evaluate your skin and determine if wrinkle relaxers can help you recapture a smoother, more refreshed face.
Meticulous records of each patient’s treatment strategy are kept so that treatments can be reproduced or modified over time, based on their experience with the previous treatment(s). New patients will usually have a conservative initial treatment and are invited to return (free of charge) 2 weeks later for evaluation of their result and, potentially, the addition of more wrinkle injections. We often tell patients “you can add but you can’t subtract botox for 4 months.” This way, the treatment is individualized for each person’s specific anatomy and aesthetic goals but kept at the lowest possible dosing required for results.
The result is often less botox or dysport used. For example, if a patient wants forehead, frown, and crow’s feet injections, typical patterns will require the use of 40-50 units of botox. Smoothtox technique typically requires only 25-30 units to treat the upper face. Since Dr. Westreich prices the treatment by the amount injected, this typically results in a dramatically lower cost for patients.