You’ve heard about Botox, but do you really know how it works? And what about Dysport, another drug that may achieve similar results? If you’re looking to rid yourself of facial wrinkles, it’s time to learn about your options.
How Do Botox and Dysport Work?
Over time, our facial muscles don’t really change, but our skin becomes thinner. As it thins, it more easily creases with muscle movement. Both Dysport and Botox prevent wrinkles because they lessen this movement. When injected, these “botulinum toxins” prevent nerves from talking to the muscles. The molecules block this communication so that the muscle doesn’t contract. When the muscle stops contracting, the skin stops bending.
Skin rejuvenates itself constantly. It’s always remolding, turning over, building up, and tearing down. When the muscle no longer moves, the skin actually eliminates wrinkles on its own. When a crease no longer has a function, the skin removes the line as it regenerates.
The results of Botox and Dysport can be very long lasting. Even as you regain movement in the muscles, it takes time for the process to repeat itself and for the lines to reappear. In fact, with each injection the muscle weakens. Why? When the muscles stay still for long periods of time, they thin out and weaken from lack of use.
Think about what happens when an arm has to be in a cast. The muscles don’t move for the entire time. When the cast comes off, arm lacks strength and can’t move as well. These injections work the same way. The more injections you have, the longer it takes for lines to reappear.
What’s the Difference Between Botox and Dysport?
Botox and Dysport work similarly. These molecules contain biologic processor proteins wrapped around the active part of the toxin. However, the proteins are different in these two molecules. They come from different strains: one from America, one from Britain. The proteins protect the toxin and to keep it working. Because these proteins affect the way the toxin works, the way the injections are measured and the way it diffuses in the skin varies.
Most patients can’t tell the difference between a Botox injection and a Dysport injection. Some studies show that Dysport may last longer around the eyes. Dysport also diffuses more evenly through the skin. Because it spreads out more, some consider Dysport to have a softer look. These differences won’t be visible to most people; however, doctors may choose one over the other depending on how and where they plan to use the injections.
Will My Face Look Frozen?
Frozen facial expressions are the results of someone who has been overmedicated. An experienced professional won’t let this happen. Your doctor should recommend an amount of Botox or Dysport that reduces movement enough to eliminate lines without freezing your muscles completely.
We like to see our patients again after two weeks to evaluate their results. If they need a higher dose, we can give them more or just make notes about individual preferences for any future injections.
If you’ve hesitated to call your dermatologist about Botox or Dysport, there’s no need to worry. An experienced professional will tell you which injection will work best for your needs and how much you need. If your goal is to remove lines, these injections will do just that!
Have more questions about Botox or Dysport treatments? Contact us to schedule a consultation.
Dr. R. Todd Plott is a board-certified dermatologist in Coppell, Keller, and Saginaw, TX. His specialization and professional interests include treating patients suffering with acne, identifying and solving complex skin conditions such as psoriasis, rosacea, atopic dermatitis, and identifying and treating all types of skin cancers. In his spare time, Dr. Plott enjoys cycling, traveling with his wife, and spending time with his children and new grandson.
Learn more about Dr. Plott.