Today, we’re talking about one of our most popular procedures: toxin. 

Ok, okay! It sounds a little scary, right? But what is toxin when it comes to beauty? 

The medical term for “toxins” in use in aesthetic treatments is actually “neuromodulators”– wrinkle-relaxing injections of botulinum toxin. Most people are familiar with Botox, and that’s actually what most people ask for when they come into the office. 

But toxins are made by different brands and can sometimes serve slightly different purposes. Just like going to a restaurant and asking for a “Coke” when you really just mean “soda”. Botox is just the one brand of toxin that most people are familiar with. And it has kind of become the brand for toxins in general. Here at Jackson Health & Wellness, we provide Botox, Dysport, and Jeuveau.

You should talk to your provider about the subtle differences between them and which one is going to be best for you.

How is toxin used?

Toxin is meant to work on dynamic wrinkles: those are the wrinkles that happen when you make facial movements, raise your eyebrows up, or make those mean faces at your husband and children because they’re driving you crazy 😉Toxins relax the smooth muscles in those areas of the face and keep you from making those movements, which deepen the wrinkles.

Now, the static wrinkles that you have, which are the lines that are present even at rest, are the ones that occur because of the dynamic movement over time. Toxin will not get rid of those. It will, however, over time, make them softer and less noticeable. If you keep up with your tox, you won’t repeat those movements, and you’ll notice a softened presence to those wrinkles.

How many units do I need?

We won’t know how many units you’ll need until you sit down in our office, and we can assess your facial movement… because everyone is different.

Your facial shape is different, your movement is different. The number of units completely depend on the person and their treatment. 

Now, the most common amounts that we use between the brows is about 12 to 18; across the forehead typically around 10 to 14; and for crow’s feet, usually 6 to 8 units per side. But again, it totally depends on the person.

Men typically need more toxin than women– sorry, guys! Men tend to burn through their treatment a little bit faster. Men’s facial movements also tend to be a little heavier, which means it takes a little more toxin to relax the muscles. So until you sit down in the consult chair, we can’t really tell you how many units you’re going to need. 

Does it hurt?

We cannot tell you that sticking a needle in your face is 100% pain free. 💉😩

…But it’s really not that bad! 

We do not typically numb for Botox. The only toxin procedure that we will typically numb for is a lip flip. And that’s just because the lip is super sensitive. But other areas of the face are much less sensitive and the procedure is typically over in about 15 minutes.

So pain level is pretty minimal for most people. The most common side effects that we see are usually headache, which is ironic as Botox can be used to treat migraines. But it can sometimes cause a headache in certain cases. Some people can have flu like symptoms. You can have some bruising. It’s not as common with toxin, but it can happen. We all have little veins that live all over our face, so sometimes you will have some bruising after tox treatment. 

Our number one concern as injectors is causing some sort of facial asymmetry. I’m sure you’ve seen horror stories on Instagram and Facebook with people whose eyebrows sink way down low because their tox got into a place that it didn’t mean to go– this can happen for a variety of reasons.

Sometimes it is injector error; sometimes it’s facial anatomy. Sometimes it is due to the patient not following post-care instructions that we have given.

These are the potential risks with toxins, as there are risks with any aesthetic or medical procedure. We’re very careful on where we inject tox and how much that we use.

How long does it last?

Normally, our treatments last from 3 to 4 months, but, again, depending on your specific face, its needs, etc., your treatment may last longer or shorter. Different brands may also affect you differently. 

This is part of what will be discussed in your initial consult and treatment plan.

So we hope that answers some of your most common questions about tox treatment! If you have more questions or if you want to schedule a consult, get in touch!

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