Botox® Versus Fillers: Which Aesthetic Treatment Is Right for Me?

We never stop to appreciate our healthy, youthful skin when we’re young enough to have it. It’s only as we age and develop fine lines and wrinkles that we long for the days when it was just part of who we were. You can reclaim that youthful skin through a variety of aesthetic treatments, including Botox® Cosmetic and dermal fillers.

At Arizona Ocular and Facial Plastic Surgery, with offices in Scottsdale and Peoria, Arizona, our oculofacial plastic and cosmetic surgeon, Dr. Dustin Heringer, and his team offer both Botox Cosmetic and dermal fillers for our patients who want to turn back the hands of time. 

But which treatment is right for you? 

The facts about Botox

Botox is an injectable drug made from purified botulinum toxin. The FDA approved its use for cosmetic procedures in April 2002, specifically for the treatment of glabellar lines (brow furrows) in adults ages 65 and younger.

For cosmetic purposes, Botox is primarily used to treat dynamic wrinkles, those caused by muscle contractions. Every time you smile, frown, or raise your eyebrows, your muscles pull the skin above along with them. After a lifetime of facial expressions, you develop wrinkling around the eyes, on your forehead, and between your eyebrows. 

Botox temporarily paralyzes the muscles in these areas so they can’t contract. And when they can’t contract, they can’t pull at your skin. Your face relaxes, and the wrinkles disappear.

According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, most people see noticeable effects within a week of the injections. The side effects are minimal and usually disappear quickly. There’s no downtime with the injections, and your results last about 3-4 months, at which time you can receive another treatment.

The facts about dermal fillers

Dermal fillers, unlike Botox, are used to treat wrinkles resulting from collagen breakdown, as well as areas like the lips, cheeks, and hands that lose their volume with age. 

Fillers were introduced in the 1970s, but they were made of bovine collagen, which produced allergic reactions since it’s a foreign substance to the human body. Bovine collagen also had a lot of associated swelling, and the effects were not long lasting.

In the early 2000s, the FDA approved the use of fillers made from synthetic hyaluronic acid (HA), a natural substance found in our bodies. As HA products were safer and lasted much longer than collagen fillers (about 6-12 months), they quickly became the go-to choices. The first HA filler introduced was Restylane®, followed by JUVÉDERM®.

Here at Arizona Ocular and Facial Plastic Surgery, we use both of these products to treat a range of complaints. 

Restylane is completely biocompatible and biodegradable, and is formulated to add volume to the lips and to correct moderate-to-severe facial wrinkles and folds in people over 21. The filler works by attracting and binding moisture within the skin, making it appear both fuller and softer. It also fills in the spaces between the depleted collagen and elastin fibers, promoting evenness and suppleness.

JUVÉDERM® XC is specially designed to smooth out the lines and creases around your nose and mouth. It improves the appearance of vertical lip lines, smile lines, and marionette lines that extend downward from the corners of your mouth. Other JUVÉDERM products are formulated for different problems.

Which treatment is right for me?

The answer can be either, or even both, because it depends on what areas you want to treat. 

If you’re primarily concerned with dynamic wrinkles, then Botox is the obvious choice. 

If you want to add volume to areas where collagen has become depleted over time, then a dermal filler would be appropriate. 

But there’s nothing that says you can’t opt to treat all of these issues — even at the same appointment. Both procedures take only about 15 minutes, and there’s no downtime, so you could ideally even schedule them during your lunch hour.

Are you ready to recapture the smooth skin of your youth? We can help. Call one of our Arizona Ocular and Facial Plastic Surgery offices, or schedule an appointment online today.

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