Here at ADAM, we find that many new clients aren’t sure of the difference between botox and dermal fillers 🤔. First of all, that’s fine! It’s Adam’s job to make sure you’re fully informed about the treatments before you have them.
The ‘right’ treatment depends on the result you’re after: once you’ve explained that to Adam, he can suggest the most effective treatment plan (and occasionally it might be the case that neither botox or fillers are appropriate).
Sidebar: we all see a lot of talk of botox and fillers in the media, and they’re often wrongly conflated with plastic surgery: botox and fillers aren’t types of plastic surgery. They’re known as non-surgical cosmetic treatments. 💉
Below, we’ll separate out the two treatments, botox and dermal fillers, and have a look at what they are and how they work. We hope you find it useful! 🤸♀️
What is botox?
Botox is a brand name for the drug botulinum toxin, a byproduct of an organism called Clostridium botulinum.
The term ‘toxin’ might sound a bit ominous, but our bodies naturally produce toxins of various types all the time and, in reality, the way the drug is used in medical aesthetics treatments is very safe. ✅
How does botox work?
Botox is used in medicine and medical aesthetics to temporarily stop specific muscles from being able to move the way they usually would.
It was used in medicine a long time before it started being used for cosmetic treatments, which is partly how we can be confident that the drug is safe: it’s been in use for almost 50 years for a range of treatments and has been subject to numerous research studies. 👩🔬
After having Botox injections, most people start to notice the effects after around 4 days. Over time (usually around 3-4 months in a normal treatment) the muscles regain movement and we say that the treatment has ‘worn off’.
How is it administered?
Botox for medical aesthetic treatments is administered via injection into the muscle just under the skin, using a very small needle.
An example would be a treatment that partially stops the muscles between your eyebrows moving to help reduce frown lines. You only need a handful of injections to treat this area – it’s over and done with quickly and safely!
What are dermal fillers?
Most dermal fillers contain a natural substance called hyaluronic acid. Again, acid might sound like a strange thing to inject into your face 🤭, but hyaluronic acid is something that your body naturally produces and exists already in most tissues all over your body! The difference is that the dermal filler used in medical aesthetics treatments was created in a laboratory.
Like how Botox is a brand of botulinum toxin, there are different brands of dermal filler, such as Juvederm or Teosyal, but the key ingredient – hyaluronic acid – is usually the same. We only use this type of non-permanent dermal filler.
You can see the effects of dermal fillers instantly (although sometimes injection site swelling can mask the final result).
How long the effects of dermal fillers last depends on things like the type of filler and where it’s injected. They usually last between 6 and 18 months.
Dermal filler can be dissolved instantly by injecting a protein called Hyaluronidase, so if you’re not happy with the result, it’s reversible. 👍
Having dermal fillers is considered a safe treatment if it’s done by an experienced and suitably qualified practitioner – like Adam!
There have been many studies undertaken that show the safety of dermal fillers as a cosmetic treatment, but all treatments that involve injection come with some risk: if treated by Adam, he’ll explain that risk to you and what can be done to lessen it.
How does dermal filler work?
Because dermal filler is a naturally-occurring molecule that the body ‘recognises’, it simply remains in the area where it’s been injected, maintaining the desired effect (either the reduction of lines or wrinkles, or the replacement of lost volume).
As time passes, the body slowly breaks the dermal filler down, until it’s all gone, and that’s when we say the treatment has worn off. 👋🏻
How is dermal filler administered?
The filler itself is a fairly thick substance (the thickness depends on the area being treated, e.g. the lips or the cheeks). Unlike botox, which needs to be prepared by the practitioner, dermal filler comes in pre-made syringes and is injected:
- Into and under lines and wrinkles to reduce their appearance
- To add volume to areas such as your lips or cheeks 💋
It’s important to note that both treatments carry some risk, such a bruising or, in very rare cases, the risk of an allergic reaction.
Adam is a highly-qualified clinician, with a master’s degree in Advanced Clinical Practice and knows how to recognise and respond appropriately to adverse reactions. Your safety is the most important aspect of any treatment he carries out. 👨⚕️