How Long Does Botox Last?
- Medical Community - September 10th 2020
Botox is an undeniably effective treatment for facial wrinkles, folds, and lines. It has been proven to significantly reduce the formation of new lines and wrinkles become with sustained injections.
In addition, Botox has several long-term effects that contribute to the overall self-satisfaction by patients who choose to undergo this treatment.
It is important to gauge how long Botox lasts to prepare for how often maintenance treatments are necessary, to preserve and extend its effects.
What is Botox?
Botox is a brand of neurotoxin injectable used to reduce signs of aging by inhibiting and suspending targeted muscles from contracting and forming lines, wrinkles, and folds. It is also known as Onobotulinum toxin A, derived from the neurotoxin Clostridium botulinum.
Despite being dubbed as the deadliest toxin in the world, this particular type of botulinum toxin has numerous medical and scientific applications. In 2002, it was approved by the Food and Drug Administration to be a safe, minimally invasive procedure to address moderate to severe frown lines in adults.
It is used to minimize the appearance of frown lines, eliminate horizontal forehead creases, relax the lines around the eyes (crow ’s feet), lift the lines at the corners of the mouth and smoothen out glabellar lines.
How Does Botox Work?
Once injected deep under the skin, the active ingredient in Botox blocks a signal from the nerves of the targeted facial muscles. The absence of this signal prevents these muscles from contracting, which results in a relaxed, softened state of the paralyzed muscles. What were once lines and creases formed from the duress of everyday expressions gradually disappear.
Botox takes several days to fully exhibit its effects because it takes time for the treatment to take over the process of nerves and muscles coordinating to contract muscles to express facial expressions. Botox silences the particular chemical messenger called acetylcholine which is responsible for signaling the muscles to move and contract according to the facial expressions expressed by the individual.
How Long Does Botox Last?
It generally takes three to five days to notice the effects of Botox injections, but it takes ten to fourteen days to see and feel the full effects of the treatment. By this time, the skin fully projects a naturally-looking, youthful appearance free of fine lines and wrinkles.
Botox lasts for an estimate of three to six months before it gets safely disposed by the body. Its actual duration on the skin depends on the size of the dosage and area targeted. The higher the dose, the longer the effects last.
After this period, muscle action may resume and lines and wrinkles can begin to reappear once more. However, the facial muscles gradually shrink and fewer wrinkles reappear with every repeat treatment. After months of muscles at a relaxed state, Botox makes the body aware of how much muscles it takes to make every movement. The body responds to this by easing into less movement in the forehead and smile lines.
Long-term use of Botox also causes the muscles to weaken from lessened muscle activity, therefore shrinking and having a less prominent appearance. This may lead to needing less Botox over time. The most important long-term effect of Botox with continued use without interruption is looking years younger naturally.
How much does Botox cost?
Botox treatments are priced per the number of units used, but some clinics may price it per target area. Depending on the healthcare provider, one unit of Botox is priced around $10 - $15. A typical forehead treatment that uses 20 units may cause around $200 - $300. Other treatments can also include brow and neck lifts, jaw slimming and many others to name a few, all with different costs.
To have a more comprehensive assessment of the onset, duration, and costs, it is best to schedule with a licensed healthcare provider for a consultation on what to expect when undertaking Botox injections.