The “B” word!- Botox
Let’s just start out and get a few facts straight about the dreaded B word. Botox that is. Botox is an injection that is placed into the face by a trained medical professional in the area between the eyes, the forehead, and around the crow’s feet. NOT IN THE LIPS. There are a few celebrities and regular people alike walking around with crazy duck lips and deformed faces giving Botox a bad rap. Most likely, lips that are looking larger than life are due to an over injection of dermal filler. But that’s a whole other topic. I can assure you that if you choose Millefiori in downtown Melbourne for any cosmetic injection you will never look plastic, fake, or over-done.
So back to Botox. Here are some quick down and dirty answers to the most popular questions we get in the office.
What is it and how does it work?
Botox is a safe and FDA approved toxin (don’t be scared by that word) that is injected into the facial muscle to stop the movement and soften the lines. Imagine you skin is like a piece of paper and there are muscles underneath that paper and they are constantly moving from expression. The movement is like folding that paper over and over again until there is a crease. That crease in the paper will show as a winkle on the face. Stop the movement= stop the folding of the paper= stop the wrinkles in the face! Botox can be used to prevent lines from showing, stop current lines from becoming worse, and over time soften lines that were already there.
Who should be injecting my Botox?
Just because there are a million places that are now offering Botox, does not mean that you should trust anyone. Botox can be ordered by any type of Medical Doctor so essentially both a Plastic Surgeon and Psychiatrists can order and sell Botox at their practice. You want to make sure that the provider you choose has specialized training in the field of aesthetics, this should be the main focus for the practice not just an added service to an existing Urgent Care type clinic. For example at Millefiori our medical director is Dr. Alan Durkin a board certified plastic surgeon and I am a board certified physician assistant who has worked strictly in aesthetics for the last 4 years. Our office specializes only in skincare and medical aesthetics.
Who is Allergan and is that important?
Allergan in the pharmaceutical company that makes Botox. They are the only one! Some practices have decided to try and find way to offer their clients “budget Botox” and order it from other countries, such as China for example, that claim it is exactly the same as the Botox that Allergan manufactures. Not only is this medical fraud and will be investigated by the FDA, but this doesn’t sound very kosher to me personally. I am okay with purchasing Publix brand or off brand paper-towels but not really okay with an off brand medication for my face. But that’s just a personal decision. So how do you make sure you don’t get duped? You can visit Allergan’s website www.botoxcosmetic.com and click on the find a doctor link and enter your zip code click here. This will provide a list of every office in the area that orders their Botox directly from Allergan. If you are looking for a place make sure there are a verified provider and on the list. Also check out these helpful hints on how to spot fake botox.
How much do I need?
When Botox is shipped it comes in a vial and the product is freeze dried. When it gets to the office we add sterile saline (salt water) and it makes it into a liquid that can be injected. The FDA recommends the amount of saline to mix, but the ratio is up to the provider. If a practice offers a crazy bargain price they may be over-diluting and you will be getting less active Botox in each unit (how Botox is measured.) Just beware of anything that seems too good to be true.
So now on to units. Each area of the face is made of specific muscles. There is a standard average number of units of Botox that is used in each area. I tell most patients that this process is like finding your prefect recipe. We may start with the standard dose of 20 units in between the eye areas and then learn how the muscles react and may need to tweak it for the next visit. This is one reason that it is important to find a provider that you like and stick with them. It takes about 3 consecutive treatments with the same person to get optimal results. Just like when you find a stylist that cuts your hair just right you would not want to switch 3 months later to try a new place. Build a relationship with your provide. Ask lots of questions, tell them what you do and don’t like. It will make sure you get your personal recipe just right and the best results.
What will it cost?
Now this is the million dollar question. You typically want to always pay for Botox by the unit so you know exactly what you are getting and how much it will cost. Remember there is no such thing as “Bargain Botox” if the price seems too good to be true it probably is. Never skimp on the providers recommendations if you are trying to save money stick to just one area. Full improvement in one area is better than a weak improvement in 3 areas.
Our price is $12 dollars a unit. I would say in my experience in the central Florida area it ranges from $9-$14. Some office will have a special day once a month for savings. You can expect to be spending between $200-$600 total every 3-4 months, depending on the areas treated.
We will never claim to be cheapest in town for Botox pricing, but we guarantee our Botox product is authentic and always used in accordance with FDA and Allergan standards by our board certified Physician Assistant Iris Kelley, PA-C.
Call today for a free consultation to learn more. 321-821-4778.