Years of squinting can cause fine lines and wrinkles to develop under the eye area, adding years to your face and making you appear tired. Botox, an injectable treatment made from botulinum toxin, can temporarily eliminate those lines, giving skin a younger, fresher appearance. According to Beverly Hills dermatologist Dr. Arnold Klein, Botox is a relatively safe way to diminish the appearance of under-eye wrinkles when administered by a doctor or trained medical professional.
Used to treat everything from migraine headaches to excessive sweating to muscle spasms and wrinkles, Botox works by blocking the nerve response at the injection site, causing temporary paralysis in the muscles. When injected into the under-eye area, Botox temporarily eliminates fine lines and wrinkles by paralyzing the muscles you use to squint. The effects last anywhere from two to four months, depending on the individual and the amount of product used, according to the website dermanetwork.org The effect may last longer with each subsequent treatment as the targeted muscles weaken due to lack of use.
Common Side Effects
The most common side effects of Botox include bruising at the site of injection, droopiness in the eyelid or in the corner of the eye, headache, fatigue and dry mouth. While rare, there is always the danger that Botox can spread beyond the injection site and cause a more serious adverse reaction. In order to avoid this, the Mayo Clinic advises that you avoid rubbing the affected area following treatment.
To treat under-eye wrinkles, a doctor will inject between 1 and 3 cc's of Botox diluted with saline into the muscle underneath your eye. While you may experience mild to moderate discomfort during the injection, you should be able to resume normal activities immediately following treatment. Botox can take anywhere from seven to14 days to take full effect, though you may notice a difference in your under-eye area in as little as a few days.
According to Newport Beach dermatologist Dr. Grace Liu, doctors should inject only a small amount of Botox in the under-eye area to treat wrinkles. Too much Botox can cause the lower eyelid to droop in a temporary but visible way. Dr. Liu also warns that Botox may not be a good option for people with significant fat under the eye, as injections can cause the fat to bulge and appear more prominent.
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, the FDA warns that, while rare, some people may experience serious side effects following treatment with Botox. Difficulty breathing, weakness in the muscles, problems swallowing, double vision, speech difficulties, constipation, loss of bladder control and loss of voice can all occur. While these problems occur more frequently in people who seek treatment for muscle problems than for people who use Botox for cosmetic purposes, they can occur in anyone. If you receive a Botox injection and experience any of these difficulties, it is important to consult a doctor immediately.