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BOTOX® or Fillers? Why Not All Injectables Are the Same

If you’re interested in addressing signs of aging such as expression lines, loss of volume in the cheeks or lips, or smoothing out wrinkles, it’s likely you’ve considered BOTOX® or dermal fillers such as Juvéderm® or Radiesse®. While both BOTOX® and dermal fillers can be injected in your dermatologist or plastic surgeon’s offices, are non-invasive, and require little if any recovery time, they are quite different. Here is what you need to know about the difference between the two treatments so you can decide which is better for your unique needs

What is BOTOX®?

BOTOX®, a purified form of the botulinum toxin obtained from bacteria, has been safely used for decades to correct wrinkles caused by repeated facial movements such as smiling, frowning, or furrowing the eyebrows. This injectable works by blocking nerve signals in muscles it is injected into, temporarily paralyzing them. When done correctly, BOTOX® does not cause the dreaded ‘frozen face’ that some have come to associate with it and instead results in a smoother, more youthful appearance.

What are Dermal Fillers?

Dermal fillers are injected into the skin to add volume and fullness to areas that have lost volume due to genetics, aging, or extreme weight loss. Dermal fillers can be made of a number of different substances, but the most popular and effective usually make use of hyaluronic acid, which draws in moistures and adds plumpness to the skin. Dermal fillers are most often injected into the cheek or jaw area or into the lips to add or restore volume. While they can smooth out fine lines and wrinkles due to their plumping nature, they do not work on the muscles to prevent the expressions that form these wrinkles.

How are BOTOX® and Dermal Fillers Different?

Both BOTOX® and dermal fillers are temporary, safe, and non-invasive methods of providing patients with a younger, more vibrant appearance. While the effects of BOTOX® gradually wear off, the substances used in dermal fillers are safely absorbed by the body over time. There is no downtime with either type of injectable and recovery usually involves only minor swelling or irritation at the injection sites. Most patients who get BOTOX® or dermal fillers are in and out of the office within an hour or two and experience no disruption of their normal schedules.

Both treatments can help patients achieve a younger, more rested appearance, but they do so in different ways. While BOTOX® works primarily by freezing muscle movements that lead to fine lines and wrinkles, dermal fillers are meant to fill in areas that have lost volume or fullness. BOTOX® is most often used between the eyebrows, around the mouth, and around the eyes. Dermal fillers are usually used in the lips, cheeks, and around the mouth area.

The amount of time that BOTOX® and dermal fillers last also differs. While BOTOX® injections may need to be performed every three or four months to maintain results, some fillers can last two years or longer.

How Can You Choose Between BOTOX® and Dermal Fillers?

Whether you choose a BOTOX® or dermal filler treatment depends primarily on your areas of concern and the results you want from your treatment. If the main areas you want to treat are caused by repeated facial expressions and you do not have loss of volume, BOTOX® is probably the right option. However, if you feel your lips have thinned, there are hollows in your cheeks or under your eyes, or that your face has lost some of its contour, a dermal filler is likely the right choice. In many cases, combining BOTOX® with a dermal filler can provide comprehensive results that patients love. These can be used together in what is often referred to as a ‘liquid facelift’ and is appropriate for those who want to address several signs of aging at one time.

Scheduling a Consultation with a Cosmetic Plastic Surgeon

The best way to determine if BOTOX®, dermal fillers, or both are right for you is to schedule a consultation with the knowledgeable staff at Aria Dermatology and Aesthetic Center. During your consultation, a team member will be able to examine your skin, find out what results you hope for, and further explain the differences between the injectables they offer. This will help you make the right decision that will produce results you will love! Schedule your consultation today to learn more.