Whether its laughter lines, frown lines or crow’s feet – wrinkles are a normal and natural sign of ageing. They aren’t harmful but many people don’t like the way they look and want to reduce or prevent them.
We have various ways of approaching facial aesthetics at Indigo Dental to help you achieve your desired outcome.
Botulinum toxin injections
Botulinum toxin injections may reduce some types of wrinkles. They are often used to treat forehead and frown lines that come from making facial expressions. They can also reduce lines at the corners of your eyes (crow’s feet). Botulinum toxin can only reduce what are called active wrinkles which are caused by muscle activity. It won’t work for wrinkles, creases or lines that don’t change with your facial expressions.
Botulinum toxin is a protein produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. If you have botulinum toxin treatment, your clinician or doctor will inject the protein into specific muscles in your face. It will relax or paralyse these muscles to reduce their effect on lines and wrinkles. Untreated areas of your face should continue to move as normal and you will be able to laugh, smile and frown, but with less wrinkling of your skin in the treated areas.
It may take one to five days for the treatment to take effect and the best results will be after around a week or two. The treatment should last for three to six months. You will need to have botulinum toxin injections repeated if you want to keep the effects.
Botulinum toxin injections aren’t suitable if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding or have a neurological disorder, such as myasthenia gravis. The injections can’t treat wrinkles caused by sun damage.
Dermal filler injections
Dermal fillers aim to plump up your skin and make it appear fuller and smoother. Dermal fillers are often used to reduce lines around your chin and your lips, and to enhance the shape of your lips. There is a range of dermal fillers available that work in different ways, and they can be temporary or permanent.
If you have a permanent filler, it won’t adapt to further changes to your face as you age. Therefore these aren’t used as much as temporary fillers. Your clinician will usually recommend using a non-permanent dermal filler. These are either synthetic, or made from a material that closely resembles a naturally occurring acid in your body. Your clinician will inject the dermal filler into the required area with a tiny needle.
The effects from dermal filler treatment usually last from three months to 18 months, depending on the type of filler and the area you have treated. You will need to have repeat treatments if you want the effects to last longer.
Skin creams and gels
There are many creams that claim to reduce the appearance of fine lines but they can’t remove wrinkles. Creams and gels that contain retinoids (a form of vitamin A) may improve fine lines and some milder signs of ageing skin. They do this by tightening your skin so fine lines are less visible.
Some retinoid creams are available to buy over-the-counter but you will need a prescription from your doctor for others.
However, they do have side-effects. The creams can irritate your skin and make it more prone to burning in the sun, for example. Always read the patient information leaflet that comes with your cream or gel. If you have any questions, ask your pharmacist or private consultant for advice.
Other creams that may help to reduce the appearance of fine lines include antioxidant creams that contain vitamins C, B and E. These work by preventing free radicals produced by the sun, stress, and pollution from harming your skin.