One stresses. One squints. One concentrates. And over time those expressions leave their mark on your face making you look older, tired, angry and stressed.

Wrinkle injection treatments involve the use of a natural, purified protein that relaxes wrinkle-causing muscles creating a smoothed, rejuvenated and more youthful appearance. It’s a simple non-surgical procedure that smooths the deep, persistent facial lines that develop over time. Small doses are injected directly into the muscles. Impulses from the nerve to the injected muscle causing the wrinkles are blocked, allowing the muscle to relax. This relaxing of the muscle allows the skin to smooth out persistent lines which have developed over time. Anti-wrinkle injections usually take about 15–30 minutes to perform and keep the muscles that cause lines relaxed for approximately 3 months. In some cases, with repeated treatments and over time, results can last up to 6 months. Results are dramatic and apparent within days and unlike surgery it is fast, simple and minimally invasive.

One needs to distinguish between two types of facial wrinkles: dynamic and static. Dynamic wrinkles occur in people of all ages, even young children, and appear temporarily when a muscle contracts and causes the overlying skin to crease. They are typically seen with facial expressions such as smiling, frowning and raising your eyebrows. Static wrinkles are always visible, even when all the facial muscles are resting. Static wrinkles tend to develop in skin that has thinned and stretched as a result of premature or natural aging processes. They are constantly present and become more obvious with facial expressions.

Millions of people have achieved astonishing results with anti-wrinkle injections without any significant adverse side effects, saying good bye to dynamic wrinkles (and occasionally early static wrinkles) and hello to a smooth and youthful appearance. Anti-wrinkle injections treatments are effective, affordable, convenient and long lasting with no down time.

What are anti-wrinkle injections?

The substance used as a muscle relaxant in anti-wrinkle injections is a naturally occurring product made of a purified protein. Anti-wrinkle injections are a non-surgical treatment that smooth wrinkles on the face, especially around the eye area and the forehead. A series of minute, gentle injections into specific muscles are made, blocking impulses from the nerve to the tiny facial muscles that they supply. Hence, the muscles are relaxed and the expression lines are reduced or diminished. The surrounding muscles will function as normal to produce facial expressions. The result is usually a younger, fresher and natural looking appearance. When used repeatedly it will also prevent overactive muscular contractions and possibly prevent or delay further wrinkle formation.

There are three main products of muscle relaxants marketed in Australia. We only use the product with the longest history of use and according to the latest scientific data, safest and shown to give superior longevity of treatment results. In Australia, this is a schedule 4 drug which can only be prescribed by a medical doctor. By law, we are unable to name the product used.

How do anti-wrinkle injections work?

Anti-wrinkle injections work by inhibiting the transmission of messages between the nerve and the injected muscles. This temporarily relaxes the muscles so they do not contract and create wrinkles in the overlying skin. This skin has a chance to rest and repair so that wrinkles become less obvious or completely disappear. Using anti-wrinkle injections does not only reduce existing wrinkles but may also prevent further ones from forming. After treatment, the overlying skin remains smooth and unwrinkled while the untreated facial muscles contract in a normal fashion, allowing other facial expression to be unaffected.

Where can anti-wrinkle injections be useful?

Wrinkles and lines can be dynamic or static. Dynamic lines are lines which occur when the person is animating. Static lines are those which you can see when your face is at rest. Anti-wrinkle injections are commonly used to treat dynamic lines effectively. They are especially useful for the top half of the face. Anti-wrinkle injections also yield some benefit for static shallower lines by softening them. Treatment of static lines is usually coupled with other treatments such as dermal fillers or fractional laser.

They can be used on frowns, crow’s feet, and forehead lines. They can also strategically relax certain muscles to create an eyebrow lift, reduce a gummy smile, slim the jaw line, and to stop the downward pull of muscles on the mouth (sad mouths) and neck (turkey neck). They can also help to prevent the permanent etching of lines into the face by constant muscle contraction, such as vertical lip lines and dimply chin.

Anti-wrinkle injections are also used in a variety of medical conditions, including treatment of migraine and tension headache, chronic muscular pain, teeth grinding, abnormal facial movements, tremors, and excessive sweating such as the underarms.

Are muscle relaxants safe?

The safety profile of anti-wrinkle injections is excellent. After over 20 years of use for cosmetic purposes, there is no reported major side effect. There is also not a single reported case of allergic reactions. The same substance is used to treat a number of medical conditions ranging from cerebral palsy to migraines and eye squints. There are no known systemic side effects.

Does it hurt and what can go wrong?

Generally, there are few side effects and they are usually transient in nature. The minor swelling and redness at injection sites usually resolve within half an hour. Some people may experience mild, short-term bruising at the injection site, which covers easily with make-up. Some people may notice a mild headache, which can be treated with simple pain killers. In rare cases, the anti-wrinkle injection can spread beyond the desired area. If the injection in the eyebrow area spreads to the eyelid, there can be a temporary drooping of the upper eyelid, which is treatable with eye drops until it resolves within a few weeks. A minority of patients may experience skin tightness, tingling sensations, itching, nausea and flu like symptoms. Again, these are transient and may last a day or two.

Is there any downtime?

No. Most clients return to work or normally activities immediately following treatment. It is recommended however, that you avoid exercise, heavy lifting and massaging the injected area injected for one day.

How long does the procedure take and is there follow up?

Initial consultation may take between 30 – 60 minutes. This would allow ample time for a medical history, examination and answering of any questions. After informed consent is obtained, the procedure itself should take around 10 minutes. All patients are encouraged to attend for review after a two week period. At this time we ensure that the required results have been obtained and any dose adjustment is made. Follow up is typically only required after the first consultation.

When will I see the results?

The treatment will start to take effect usually within 2 to 3 days. The maximum effect is usually seen in 7-14 days.

How long does the treatment last?

The degree of improvement varies from person to person, but the results last for at least three months. With subsequent treatments, and over time, the results tend to last longer, even up to six months. The treatment will need to be repeated to maintain the result. Repeat treatment is recommended when movement in the area starts to return.

Will I look frozen?

The aim of treatment is to look refreshed, younger and have better appearing skin, not to look frozen or stunned. The effects of injection are dependent on the injector, who needs to have a keen aesthetic eye along with an understanding of the intricate anatomy of the face and individual client facial features. In the hands of a good injector, the results should be natural with appropriate facial expressions, but no or reduced wrinkles.

What can I do to prepare myself for this treatments?

To minimise the possibility of bruising, it is best to avoid anti-inflammatories such as Aspirin (unless for medical reasons) and Nurofen, green tea, garlic, ginkgo and other herbal products that may thin blood, a week or so prior to the procedure. Alcohol is also not a good idea on the day and should be kept to a minimum the day before. We also encourage our clients to commence arnica tablets a few days before treatment.

How much product will I require and what is the cost?

Each client is and individual and requires individual doses. This is assessed on consultation with the treating doctor. A treatment is mapped out for each client and the cost can be assessed at this time. This is based on a clients unique requirements and the result that is desired. It is for this reason that we do not give a fixed price per area as this tends to lead to under dosing and suboptimal results.

The cost depends on the amount administered and this can vary according to gender, strength of facial muscles treated, the degree of wrinkling and the effect of previous treatments. As a guide, females will require about 12 to 30 units for the treatment of crow’s feet, and 20 to 30 units for frown lines, and from 8 to 20 units for the treatment of forehead lines. Males usually require larger doses than females – sometimes up to double the amount.