Botox and Dermal fillers are cosmetic treatments given through injections. They are minimally invasive, meaning they do not involve surgery. That is where their similarities end, however.
Botox contains purified bacteria that freeze muscles. In doing so, Botox can help minimize the appearance of lines and wrinkles caused by facial expressions. Dermal fillers contain ingredients that add fullness to areas that have thinned due to aging. This thinning is common in the cheeks, lips, and around the mouth.
What is Botox?
Botox is a purified form of the botulinum toxin that is obtained from bacteria. A regulated amount of Botox given to correct wrinkles has been used safely for decades. Botox works by blocking nerve signals in the muscles where it is injected.
When those nerve signals are interrupted, the affected muscle is temporarily paralyzed or frozen. Without the movement of these selected muscles in the face, certain wrinkles may be softened, reduced, or even removed. Botox and other treatments made with botulinum toxin are sometimes called neuromodulators or neurotoxins. Treatments made with botulinum toxin are sold under the brand names Botox Cosmetic, Dysport, and Nuceiva.
What are Dermal Fillers?
Dermal fillers are small injections of gel, typically made up of hylauronic acid, that fills in wrinkles and adds volume to soft tissue. You can have Dermal fillers in different parts of your face: around the eye, cheeks, mouth, and jawline, as well as lip fillers administered directly into the lip tissue.
Fillers basically restore lost volume to your face and plump areas, so that deep-set lines are smoothed. As we get older our bodies stop producing collagen and elastin, both of which contribute to the youthful look. Experts argue over when we start losing collagen, but the generally agreed age is around 25. Your collagen and elastin levels then decline at a rate of about 2% per year, and your body will have stopped producing it altogether by your late twenties.
Each one of these is designed to treat different signs of aging or other cosmetic issues. The time they take to work, as well as how long they last, also vary. Some fillers last 6 months, while others last up to 2 years or longer. People should discuss their individual needs and expectations with their doctor to determine what filler would be the best choice for them.
The Key Differences
In summary, the differences between Botox and Dermal fillers are:
- Botox: This freezes muscles to stop creases and wrinkles caused by facial expressions. These are typically found in the upper face, such as the forehead and around the eyes.
- Dermal fillers: These use hyaluronic acid and similar substances to “fill in” or plump areas that have lost volume and smoothness. This includes wrinkles around the mouth, thin lips, and cheeks that have lost fullness. They may also be used on forehead wrinkles, scars, and other areas that need extra volume for a smoother look.
- Botox results last 3 to 4 months. Dermal filler results vary, depending on which filler is used.
Because Botox and Dermal fillers are different substances designed for different uses, they can sometimes be combined in one treatment. For instance, someone may use Botox to correct lines between the eyes and a filler to correct smile lines around the mouth.
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