Botox has been the gold standard in cosmetic treatments for facial wrinkles and fine lines for almost two decades. Botox officially received FDA approval as a cosmetic treatment for wrinkles and fine lines in 2002. Since then, millions of Botox treatments have been administered per year for dynamic facial wrinkles, including crow’s feet, glabellar lines, and forehead lines.
However, as is true for all medical treatments and procedures, you must follow certain precautions after receiving the Botox to avoid potential risks. Botox is a safe procedure without downtime, allowing you to resume most daily activities immediately. Even so, you need to exercise some basic precautions to avoid problems like droopy eyelids or nerve damage.
This article provides a detailed overview of Botox aftercare to help ensure your optimal results and recovery.
2. Wait at least 24 hours before working out.
Botox treatments are incredibly popular because they allow you to resume your daily activities without downtime or interruptions. You barely experience any pain and discomfort, allowing you to resume work. Some people even seek treatment during their work lunch break to avoid interrupting their daily schedules. However, you should wait at least 24 hours before exercising or working out.
Physical and strenuous activities, like working out or jogging, increase blood flow. Increased blood flow to the treatment region may spread the toxin to undesired locations, minimizing the treatment’s efficiency and increasing the risk of side effects. Exercises also cause muscle contractions, which can also affect the treatment’s efficiency.
3. Smile and frown to your heart’s content.
People often assume that Botox treatments prevent you from smiling, frowning, or using your facial muscles. There’s a common misconception that Botox freezes all your facial muscles, giving you a frozen expression.
Botox treatments are indeed meant to paralyze some facial muscles to prevent the formation of smile lines, frown lines, and forehead lines. However, the dreaded “frozen expression” only occurs when Botox isn’t administered correctly or due to over-dosage.
In most cases, Botox produces subtle results that smoothen your facial lines while maintaining natural expressions. In fact, you’re encouraged to smile, frown, move your eyebrows and exercise the complete gamut of your facial expressions. Working your facial muscles makes the Botox results appear sooner.
4. Don’t sleep on the treatment area.
You must avoid sleeping on the treated area for at least 24 hours. If possible, you should avoid sleeping on the treated area for several days. If you received Botox on your face, you must sleep on your back and keep your face up to avoid rubbing it against the pillow.
Controlling your sleeping style is perhaps the most difficult aftercare tip to follow. After all, most people have no consciousness of their bodies when they sleep — you may toss and turn without even realizing it. However, if you’ve just had Botox, you must be cautious of sleeping on the side or your stomach.
The best way to ensure you sleep on your back is to get an orthopedic pillow that forces your neck in a stable position. Some pillows have contoured surfaces that prevent you from moving your face from side to side. Using such a pillow will decrease the risk of you rubbing your face against the pillow, which can spread the toxin and cause bruising.
5. Painkillers and ice packs can help with bruising or pain.
Botox is a non-surgical treatment that causes little to no pain or discomfort. You may have mild swelling, bruising, or discomfort around the injection points, but the pain and discomfort only last for a few hours. In rare cases, the pain and discomfort may last for a few days.
If you can’t handle the pain, you must consult your doctor before taking any painkillers. The doctor may ask you to take a Tylenol to minimize discomfort. They may also recommend a numbing cream to minimize discomfort in the treatment areas. You can also try applying an ice pack to minimize the swelling on your face.
However, please clear everything with your doctor before proceeding.
6. Avoid alcohol for at least 24 hours before and after the treatment
Alcohol increases the risk of bruising. As such, you should avoid consuming alcohol at least 24 hours before and after the Botox treatment. Basically, you should abstain from alcohol for a total of 48 hours to avoid bruising.
7. Avoid the sun or other forms of heat exposure for around 48 hours.
Heat can make you flush, increasing blood circulation to your face. Excessive blood circulation to your face may affect the treatment, either diluting its efficiency or increasing the risk of bruising. As such, you should avoid exposure to the sun or other forms of heat — tanning beds, saunas, hot showers, hot tubs — for 24 to 48 hours.
8. Contact a doctor if you have severe symptoms.
Botox treatments usually cause mild redness, swelling, and bruising for about 24 hours — that’s normal. You may also notice bruising for about a week or two — that’s also normal. However, you must contact your doctor if you experience muscle weakness, difficulty speaking, poor bladder control, vision changes, difficulty swallowing, or difficulty breathing.
If you follow all of these Botox aftercare tips, you’ll recover effectively and see the results within a few days.