Botox is well-known for freezing facial muscles to soften lines, such as frown lines and crow's feet. It can also help to correct facial symmetry and reshape features without surgery in the forehead, around the eyes and mouth and in the neck. For example, Botox can help to raise an eyebrow or prevent your mouth turning down at the corners by paralysing the muscles that drag features down.
It is often used in conjunction with an eyelid lift (blepharoplasty), chemical peel or fillers. It can even be used to combat excess sweating.
Before it was adopted for aesthetic procedures, Botox had been used for many years to treat tics and other medical disorders. As well as using Botox in cosmetic procedures, Raman Malhotra runs a botulinim toxin clinic (Facial Dystonia Clinic) at the Queen Victoria Hospital NHS Trust in East Grinstead, where he treats patients with:
Botox is injected into a muscle with a fine needle, causing a temporary paralysis that allows lines to soften. Effects are usually seen between three and five days and last for approximately six months. Repeated injections lead to a gradual weakening of the muscles.
A local anaesthetic cream can be applied 45 minutes before treatment to reduce any pain from the injections, although this is usually unnecessary. Cooling with ice packs helps reduce any discomfort.