Can Botox Treat Acne Scars?Acne is a skin condition that is often a hallmark of adolescence, but some people cope with acne even longer than just during their teen years. Sometimes acne lingers well into the twenties and even early thirties. And while the condition itself is hard to deal with – red skin and unsightly blemishes – the scars acne leaves behind can be even more troubling.There is no denying that a bad case of acne during the teenage years and early twenties (and, as we said, sometimes, even later) can be devastating to a person’s self-esteem. This skin problem negatively impacts an individual’s developing self-confidence. Even when acne subsides as the body matures, it leaves behind visible scars that are a painful reminder of just how bad this skin condition was.In recent years, dermatologists and cosmetic surgeons have recommended Botox as a solution to those scars. Botox is a cosmetic treatment product that many people associate with Hollywood stars struggling to maintain a youthful appearance. But in fact, it’s beneficial to “ordinary” folks, too, not just celebrities who don’t like visible signs of aging. It helps individuals dealing with the aftereffects of acne – those unsightly scars it so often leaves in its wake.In this article, we offer some suggestions about whether seeking Botox treatments from a plastic surgeon or dermatologist is the way to go if you’re dealing with severe or moderate acne scars.We’ve done the research and investigated just what the experts say, so you can decide whether having Botox to deal with your acne scars is the right choice for you or someone in your family.
What Causes Acne?
When you sweat, oils build up on your skin and clog your pores. In essence, that’s what causes acne to break out, particularly on the forehead, chin, and bridge of the nose – although breakouts can occur on any part of the face and back. In some people, acne even erupts on the chest and shoulders, too.
The Different Kinds Of Acne Scarring:
There are two types of scars left behind when acne abates. One is called Hypertrophic, which refers to scars that rise from the surface of the skin and have a “puckering” look. The other is called Atrophic, which refers to scars that depress the skin, causing the “cratering” effect.An acne outbreak causes inflammation and blemishes. Once the outbreak has passed, left in its wake is misshapen and stretched skin that can be badly scarred. However, Botox goes a long way toward lessening the visible effects of acne scars, particularly when used in conjunction with derma fillers.
How Does Botox work?
Botox is actually a brand name. The product itself is called botulinum toxin, which is a nerve-blocking drug that usually paralyzes movement in areas of the face.Botox is injected into the scarred area (only by a qualified medical professional!), and it relaxes your facial muscles. This, in turn, reduces the strain on the scarred areas. Collagen is a protein in the complexion that boosts hydration and lessens wrinkles, but it gradually depletes as we get older.That’s why many plastic surgeons and other specialists often recommend that you get derma fillers after having Botox. Because even once Botox has relaxed the muscles underneath the affected areas on your face, the scars may still be visible. Fillers can go a long way toward minimizing the appearance of acne scars if they are used in conjunction with Botox –a kind of one-two punch, so to speak!Derma fillers are usually made of collagen or hyaluronic acid, both of which smooth over the scars once they are injected. So, first, the doctor uses Botox to relax the muscles, then they use filler to make the scar tissue smooth again. Using both – Botox and fillers – almost always produces the best result. It depends on how bad and how deep your acne scars are.The other benefit of Botox is that many dermatologists use it to help prevent future acne outbreaks, as it inhibits the production of oils in pores.
What Is Bellafill?
At present, Bellafill is the only FDA-approved filler specially designed to treat acne scars. (Others, like Juvaderm, work also, but Bellafill has been designed specifically for the treatment of moderate to severe acne scars). Eighty percent of Bellafill’s content is collagen, so you get a large dose of this skin-enhancing protein.The rest of this product consists of a substance called polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) which helps the body increase healing. There are other derma fillers that work on acne scars as well, including Restylane, which is a type of hyaluronic acid. According to the research we did, many doctors praise Bellafill because of its ability to last and its level of collagen.
When Should You Consider Botox?
Are your acne scars bothering you so much that they inhibit your happiness, self-confidence and satisfaction in life? If you answered “yes” or even “sometimes,” a consultation with a dermatologist is probably a good idea. If you don’t already have a specialist, start with your G.P. and ask for a referral. After all, you don’t have to live with them! Treatments like Botox and derma fillers are now relatively inexpensive for most people, and the benefits of having smooth, attractive skin are immeasurable.However, we offer one caveat here: don’t forget to bring age into this decision. If your teenager is asking for Botox, be sure to find out how likely it is they will continue enduring outbreaks because of their age. It is sometimes wise to wait a few years so that acne is largely behind them, but your doctor can advise you best on this matter.
Is There a Downside To Botox?
Not really! Treatment takes very little time, and most patients don’t even feel the need to take a day away from work. The results are virtually immediate, and once your scars are less visible and your skin is smoother, you’ll start feeling better about yourself and your appearance right away, too.If there is a downside, it is that Botox injections don’t last forever. Your body will start processing Botox quickly, usually metabolizing it over the course of several months. To keep your skin looking its best and the scars the least visible, you should schedule injections every three, four or perhaps six months.Most patients find the effects begin to wane after six months at the most, but every individual is different, and you should judge when its effectiveness is waning based on how you feel and look. Every person is different, and so are their experiences with Botox and how long it lasts.
Is Botox Expensive?
Like so many questions about medical products and procedures, the answer is: it depends. Factors like what city you live in (big or small) and which specialist you see impact the price. One vial of Botox can cost about $25 (USD), so the price also depends on how much product you need. In some cases, doctors charge based on the area of the face being treated rather than the amount of Botox used. Either method of setting fees – by product amount or by the part of the body being treated – is up to the medical professional.Your first move should be scheduling a consultation with a medical professional and making your decisions based on their advice. Some spas and clinics also offer Botox injections and fillers, but you should check the credentials of anyone you’re considering hiring to do the procedure. Although Botox and fillers have been proven safe and have few or no side effects, it’s important that the person administering them for the treatment of your acne scars is a qualified professional.You may also want to consult family and friends who have used Botox and derma fillers as treatments for acne scars. There is nothing like a personal recommendation from someone you know and trust to make you feel comfortable about the specialist you’re consulting.
Botox is safe for treating acne scars, and doctors and cosmetic surgeons have been recommending it for years now. There are several factors to consider, of course, including price and how often you’ll have to keep going for treatments. Can you afford it? Does your doctor perhaps have a payment plan that would make the cost a little easier for you? And don’t forget to check “before and after” photos of their websites before choosing a specialist to use.Long gone are the days when acne left lifelong reminders of its effects on the face and body. Today, thanks to modern medicine, you don’t have to suffer through the scars left behind by a bad case of acne during adolescence.But this isn’t something you should rush into without being fully informed. Consider starting the process by seeing your physician, as they’ll know cosmetic surgeons and dermatologists in the community.Do lots of research and reading online. Take your time. Living with acne scars is difficult, we know, but learning about all your treatment options before choosing one for you is the only way you’ll make the right decision!