When it comes to minimally-invasive procedures, Botox is still number one. That's because it's so versatile -- Botox softens forehead wrinkles, tightens the jawline, and even prevents wrinkles and lines from forming. If you don't already know how Botox works, it paralyzes muscles, smoothing out wrinkles and furrows in the skin. Here's what you should know before getting Botox for the first time:
1. Expect to make an investment
If a deal seems too good to be true, then it probably is. How much you'll pay for injections all depends on the cost of the material used, who's administering it, and your location. More well-trained, board-certified medical professionals in major cities will probably cost more. You'll want to avoid any steep discounts being offered, since the quality can be far inferior and unregulated. Medical professionals charge by the unit, so you'll only pay for the actual amount of Botox being used.
2. Schedule a consultation
Arrange a consultation with your medical professional to ensure that both of you are on the same page. A consultation includes a discussion of cosmetic concerns, treatment options, and risks and benefits. This ensures a safe and effective result.
3. You probably won't bruise
One common misconception is that Botox will leave you with bruises. While there's a risk, medical professionals can always use lasers to minimize discoloration if you do happen to bruise.
4. There's zero downtime involved
One of the reasons why Botox is so popular is because there's zero downtime required following the procedure. Though you may experience some swelling and numbness, you can go back to work right after your appointment. Usually, any swelling subsides within an hour or two.
5. Avoid blood-thinning meds beforehand
Before your Botox injection, you should avoid any medications that can thin your blood, such as ibuprofen and aspirin, since they increase the risk of bruising. Many medical professionals also recommend that patients avoid fish oil, multivitamins, cinnamon, ginger, green tea, and red wine a full week before surgery. This is because antioxidants can increase the fragility of blood vessels and prevent clotting.
6. There are some restrictions after treatment
For several hours after a Botox treatment, you should avoid putting on makeup, washing your hair, exercising, lying down, or messing with the injected zones. You should also refrain from flying. All of these things can spread the toxin to nearby muscles or weaken the injections.
Bonus: Botox can even reverse the early signs of aging when used preventatively
You might have heard of the term "preventative Botox." All this means is that, when started early enough in younger patients -- typically those in their late twenties and early thirties -- Botox can reverse the first signs of fine lines and wrinkles. Pretty amazing, right?