Botox for the Boomer

In Birmingham, AL

By Blake Raggio MD

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Published on April 2023

Botox for the Boomer

In last month’s article, we discussed the anatomy of facial aging. Today, we will explore one of the many solutions available to help reverse and/ or prevent signs of aging. Join me as I discuss the nuances of perhaps the most popular anti-aging procedure available today, botulinum toxin, or more commonly referred to as “Botox.”

What exactly is botulinum toxin?
Botulinum toxin, commonly referred to as “Botox” or “toxin” for short, represents a powerful neuromodulator derived from a toxin purified from a bacterium, Clostridium botulinum. To clarify, one should know there exists several tradenames of botulinum toxin, five of which are currently available in the United States and FDA-approved for cosmetic use. They include, Botox, Dysport, Xeomin, Jeuveau, and Daxxify. For the remainder of the article, we will use the term toxin or neuromodulators to refer to any of the above botulinum toxin preparations.

How does toxin work?
As mentioned above, toxin is a neuromodulator that works by blocking the nerve signals needed for muscles to contract. When injected using precise amounts into targeted muscles of the face, toxin can be safely used to soften wrinkles by relaxing the muscles whose repetitive movement is associated with deep lines or wrinkles (e.g., smiling, frowning, surprised, grimace).

What areas of the face can be treated with toxin?
Botulinum toxin can be used to soften lines and wrinkles on several different areas of the face, including the more commonly addressed forehead, eye area (crow’s feet), and “bunny lines” on the nose. A more experienced injector may also discuss the roles of toxin to soften chin dimpling, treat a “gummy smile,” turn up the corners of the mouth, increase lip “pout,” improve the contour of the neck (Nefertiti lift), soften neck- banding (playstma injections), slim the jawline (masseter injections), rotate the tip of the nose, or improve the overall appearance and texture of the skin by injecting hyper-dilute concentrations of toxin (meso- botox). NOTE: some of these treatments may be considered off-label, so please consult with a credentialed and reputable physician when creating a treatment plan.

What does a toxin treatment feel like?
For most people, toxin injections are a very quick in-office procedure with minimal discomfort (often described as a “pinch”). Even better, there is virtually no downtime associated with toxin injections. In fact, many patients come for their treatment during their lunchbreaks and can return to work immediately after their appointment. Also, try to find an injector who offers other ancillary measures to maximize your comfort, which may include vibration devices, ice, or topical anesthesia.

How soon will I see results, and how long does it last?
Generally, it takes 7 days to see the full effects of toxin. The results typically last between 3-5 months, depending on a variety of factors including injection technique, dosing concentration, age, metabolism, and physical activity level. Repeated “maintenance” injections every 3-4 months help patients maintain their results for a longer period, sometimes requiring less amount of product during subsequent visits as the muscles progressively weaken or atrophy.

Is toxin safe? What are the side effects?
The various FDA-approved botulinum toxin preparations for cosmetic use have an extremely high safety profile with minimal and temporary side effects including bruising, swelling, redness, or tenderness to the injection site. You should know, however, that some contraindications exist, including if you have certain neurological diseases or are taking antibiotics. It is also recommended to avoid treatment within 2 weeks of being sick, having dental work, or receiving a vaccine. Overall, neuromodulators such as Botox, Dysport, and Xeomin represent a safe and powerful toolto prevent and treat the signs of aging.

When should I start getting toxin? What do I need to do?
While some may worry that they are either “too young” or “too old” to receive toxin, there is no right or wrong age to begin treatments. Simply put, if you have wrinkles that you’d like to soften or eliminate, toxin may be right for you. The first step involves finding a reputable, credentialed, and experienced injector with intimate knowledge of facial anatomy who can offer you a customized treatment plan based on your aesthetic goals.

Lastly, choose a surgeon whom you trust.
There are few things more important than
your relationship with your doctor.
In Good Health,

Blake Raggio, M.D
Double Board Certified Facial Plastic Surgeon

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Patient reviews

  • Torrey

    5 Star Review

    I am a week post-op from my cosmetic rhinoplasty with Dr. Blake Raggio, a Facial Plastic Surgeon here in Birmingham, Alabama. I just had my cast removed today and I could not be happier with my results already!

  • Jessica

    5 Star Review

    Thank you, Dr. Blake Raggio, for the excellent work on my nose. The Rhinoplasty to correct the deviated septum and nostril closure went so smoothly. My breathing has improved and the before and after pictures were amazing. Your knowledge and skills improved my health and facial profile.

  • Pamela

    5 Star Review

    Dr. Blake Raggio is an amazing Facial Plastic Surgeon. I am one week out from having my
    Blepharoplasty and Browlift and could not be more pleased. Not only is he a talented Facial Plastic Surgeon he also has a wonderful bedside manner.

  • Elizabeth

    5 Star Review

    Dr. Raggio and staff get an A+ for their superb care! From the time you walk in the door to the time you leave, you will be treated like family! Best of all you’ll leave looking younger and feeling good! You can’t beat the care and compassion from Dr Raggio and his staff!

  • Chelsea

    5 Star Review

    Dr. Raggio is the absolute best! He listens and is very precise with his injections. I am extremely happy with the results I have gotten with him. He does not push any services on you, either. I have uploaded two pictures to show the difference. I get Botox and lip filler.

  • Sheila

    5 Star Review

    I went to Dr Reggio for my eyelids. They were folding over. I was scared to have the surgery but the right eye was bothering me. So I decided to have the surgery and this Doctor is such a delight and kind-hearted. I am very, very happy with the way my surgery turned out. I would highly recommend Dr. Raggio to anyone!

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