Dr. Joseph M. Perlman Advanced Plastic Surgery Centre


You have probably thought about getting Botox injections for some time, right?

Perhaps the idea crossed your mind while getting ready to go out on a date… and noticed those pesky fine lines and wrinkles.

Or maybe the topic has come up over Sunday Brunch or while hanging out with girlfriends. Whatever the case, you’ve considered getting Botox injections. Most women have.

You’ve probably even done some light reading or research, only to stop short of booking an appointment.

There are many reasons why women – and men – don’t take the plunge to get Botox injections. For instance, some women admit that it’s because they’ve seen horror stories about frozen expressions on reality TV or heard ridiculous stories of it destroying someone’s appearance.

The truth is, there is a lot of misinformation about Botox injections out there! So before you officially decide if it’s an option for you, let’s separate Botox facts from fiction!

Myth: Botox Injections are Poisonous

One of the reasons why women stop short of trying out Botox injections is because they think it is dangerous and poisonous. However, that couldn’t be further from the truth.

Fact: Botox Injections are Safe

This myth does actually have a tiny bit of truth to it. Botox is actually a derivative of Botulinum toxin; it’s the purified protein version which basically means it is actually non-toxic despite its origins.

Remember, that medical professionals inject Botox directly into your muscles in order to help them relax. It’s not actually absorbed into the bloodstream like other injections you may be used to receiving in a doctor’s office.

You would actually need an astronomical amount of units before Botox injections would adversely affect your system. How much? About 200 to 300 times the number of units in a traditional treatment!

Myth: Botox Injections will freeze  my expression

You can probably blame your TV for popularizing this myth. I mean, who hasn’t seen a hilarious clip of a Botox lover whose face is comically frozen in a ridiculous expression? Realistically, though, a Botox treatment is not nearly as drastic as you’d think.

Fact: Botox Injections reduce muscle movement

If you are getting Botox for cosmetic reasons, chances are you are trying to slow down the visible signs of aging, like wrinkles or fine lines.

In order to debunk the frozen face myth, it’s important to understand how Botox works. Studies show that wrinkles form from repeatedly using the many muscles in the face which are activated thousands of times a day.

Botox injections radically reduce muscle activity. It temporarily reduces nerve impulses that tell specific muscles on the face to move. As a result, the muscles relax, smoothing out those unwanted wrinkles.

It “is” possible to receive Botox injections and be left with a frozen expression. How do you make sure you are not a victim of a Botox blunder? Seek an experienced medical professional. Understanding the human anatomy and your specific goals will determine exactly how many units to inject in precise places so your results are natural and flawless.

Myth: Botox Injections are for cosmetic use only

Most of the discussions of Botox on TV, in magazines, or in blogs only talk about the cosmetic applications of Botox. It can do wonders to reduce visible signs of aging, but Botox actually has many other health benefits.

Fact: Botox is an appropriate treatment for various conditions

Did you know that Botox originally was not created for wrinkle reduction? In fact, Botox was originally formulated and approved by the FDA (Food and Drug Association) as a treatment for eye flickering and spasms.

It actually did not even become a cosmetic treatment for fine lines and wrinkles until several years later.

Now medical professionals will use Botox “off label” to treat a variety of conditions including:

  • Excessive sweating
  • Migraines
  • Muscular disorders
  • Strabismus (crossed eyes)
  • Bladder disorders
  • Bowel disorders
  • Gummy smile and more

Myth: Botox injections are painful

Botox is injected into muscle tissue using tiny needles. Most adults will admit that they still suffer from an inherent fear of needles they’ve had since early childhood. However, you do not need to be afraid of your first Botox treatment.

Fact: Botox Injections are quick and cause very minimal pain

The sensations felt from the injections are actually very manageable. Remember, medical professionals, use very fine needles to administer your Botox treatment.

Because the needle is so small, most women report feeling nothing more than a slight sting immediately following the injection.

If you’re still worried about the pain, you can always request that your doctor apply a gentle numbing anesthetic cream which will make the entire procedure almost painless.

Myth: Botox is addictive

The results offered by Botox do not last forever. In fact, most injections results only last about 3 to 4 months. Funny enough, many women believe that once you start getting Botox treatments you will have started an endless cycle and become dependent on your treatments.

Fact: Botox does not have any addictive properties

Remember, Botox’s main function is to slow down muscle contractions. There are no addictive properties in Botox. The assumption that stopping your Botox treatment will actually ruin your face by sending the aging process into hyperdrive, is honestly a little ridiculous.

So what actually happens if ladies stop treatment?

Remember, Botox is not permanent. In about 3 to 6 months, patients will start to see the effects of Botox wear off. If you do not continue treatment you will notice those pesky fine lines and wrinkles gradually reemerge.

Now, getting Botox injections won’t make you an addict any more than your regular pedicure appointment will. Ladies tend to love the effects of Botox treatment, just like they love how their nails look after going to the salon.

So, it’s actually the successful results of the treatments that keep ladies coming back, not some sort of addictive chemical within the injections.

The Choice is Yours

Now that we’ve covered the most common myths and misconceptions about Botox injections, it’s time to make a decision.

Keep the facts in mind!

Botox injections, are not a terrifying process that will leave you frozen and addicted. It’s a quick and virtually painless way to deal with many medical conditions, most commonly, premature signs of aging.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Botox and how does it work?

Botox, short for Botulinum toxin, is a neurotoxin produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. It works by temporarily paralyzing muscles when injected in small doses. This effect occurs because it blocks signals from the nerves to the muscles, preventing them from contracting.

What are the cosmetic uses of Botox?

Botox is primarily used cosmetically to reduce the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines caused by repetitive muscle movements, such as those around the eyes (crow’s feet), forehead lines, and frown lines between the eyebrows. It can also be used to lift the eyebrows and corners of the mouth, and to treat neck bands.

Is Botox safe?

When administered by a qualified medical professional in appropriate doses, Botox is generally considered safe for cosmetic and medical purposes. However, like any medical procedure, it carries some risks and potential side effects, which should be discussed with a healthcare provider.

Who is a good candidate for Botox?

Good candidates for Botox are typically individuals who are in good overall health, have realistic expectations about the results, and are bothered by dynamic wrinkles (wrinkles caused by muscle movements). Pregnant or breastfeeding women, and individuals with certain neurological diseases or allergies to Botox components may not be suitable candidates.

What are the alternatives to Botox?

Alternatives to Botox for reducing wrinkles include dermal fillers (such as hyaluronic acid fillers like Restylane and Juvederm), laser treatments (like fractional laser and intense pulsed light), chemical peels, and microdermabrasion. These treatments work through different mechanisms to achieve similar cosmetic goals, and the choice of treatment often depends on individual preferences and the specific type of wrinkles being targeted.