A very popular minimally-invasive treatment for facial wrinkles is the use of injectable neuromodulators like Botox and Dysport. Of course most people familiar with wrinkle treatments are knowledgeable about using these products around the eyes and forehead for softening wrinkles, but most people are unaware of some other places on the face and neck that are used with great success.
Before we go too far, it is important to note that these medicines (Botox and/or Dysport) work on “dynamic wrinkles” or those wrinkles that are present or made more apparent by muscle movement. They are not as effective in treating “static wrinkles” or those wrinkles present at rest with no movement, meaning if your wrinkle is not at least partially caused by overaggressive muscle movement, Botox and Dysport are likely not the best options for you.
Neck Bands – As we get older, a muscle in the neck known as the platysma muscle relaxes and becomes redundant. This can result in the sagging we see in a person’s neck as they age. By precisely paralyzing parts of this muscle, you can achieve a more youthful neck contour in as little as one treatment.
Corners of the Mouth – One sign of aging occurs around mouth, specifically the sagging we get around the corners of our lips. This usually happens without warning one day and gives a person a slightly tired and frowned appearance. Neuromodulators are injected into one of the muscles (the depressor anguli oris) that are used in frowning. By subtly paralyzing this muscle, the down-turned corners will often come up again – restoring a more rejuvenating appearance to the aging peri-oral area.
Bunny Lines – Have you ever noticed those horizontal lines that some people have over their nose? These lines are the result of an over active nasalis muscle, and are called “Bunny Lines” (after the motion a person might make to wiggle their nose like a bunny rabbit). In some people, this muscle is so active when they smile that it can cause deep wrinkles to develop over the bridge of their nose. The good news is that the injectable neuromodulators can help with those as well by decreasing this muscles ability to contract and cause those deep wrinkles on facial animation.
Chest Wrinkles – A benefit for the neuromodulators is for treating aging chest syndrome. While the neuromodulators do not change the problem related to the skin (hyperpigmentation, freckling, etc.), they have been shown to improve the appearance of the furrows caused by over-aggressive platysma muscle contraction.
Residual Facial Nerve Paralysis or Paresis – People inexplicable develop sudden facial nerve paralysis or paresis (weakness) on one side or, even, on both sides of their face; this is a conditioned known as Bell’s palsy. Fortunately, this paralysis or weakness is only temporary with most people achieving a full recovery in a few weeks to months. However, for a few unlucky people that facial nerve paralysis or weakness can be permanent. The result of this can be a significantly asymmetric face that is made even worse when that person tries to smile or communicate. Botox and/or Dysport can help by paralyzing some of the more overactive muscles on one or both sides of the face, resulting in a more balanced appearance of that person’s face at both rest and animation.