Neuromodulators vs Injectable Fillers

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Choosing to have a cosmetic dermatologic procedure can be both exciting and daunting, especially when you see the array of different treatments. The two most popular types of injectable cosmetic procedures are neuromodulators (i.e.: Botox and Dysport) and fillers (i.e.: Juvederm and Restylane). When deciding which type of procedure is right for you, it is first important to understand that not all injectables are the same. While both treatments are technically injectable, they differ in use, purpose, and longevity. We are going to discuss the differences between injectable fillers and botox.

What Are Neuromodulators?

injectable-fillers-nueromodulatorsNeuromodulators, such as Botox/Dysport injections, are generally injected into the upper face by a dermatologist, but can also be used elsewhere for various effects. The most common areas to inject neuromodulators are the forehead, 11-lines (between the eyebrows) and crow’s feet (around the eyes). The repeated movement of these expression muscles causes wrinkles over time. Neuromodulators work by relaxing the relevant muscles to soften both movement and wrinkles in the desired area. These injections can last approximately 4 months at a time.

Pro’s:

  • It is non-invasive
  • It is a quick treatment with no downtime
  • It safely relaxes wrinkles

Cons:

  • It only lasts 3-4 months in most patients; repeated injections are necessary to maintain the improvement
  • It only works on lines caused by muscle movement
  • If the lines are deep/etched, and are noticeable at rest, neuromodulators will not completely diminish the wrinkles after one treatment and multiple treatments or fillers may be needed
  • There are a few possible rare side effects to using Botox:
    • Bruising in the injection points
    • Feeling of heaviness
    • Headache
  • What Are Injectable Fillers?

    Fillers (Restylane or Juvederm)While neuromodulators affect the action of nerves and muscles, injectable fillers act to add volume to the surrounding soft tissue. We all naturally lose volume over time, as fat and bone structure in the face diminishes with age. This loss of volume can often lead to sagging of the skin, creating the appearance of jowls or marionette lines. A dermatologist will ensure that the injectable filler is injected into an appropriate region to replenish such a loss. They can be placed deep to replenish facial structure, such as cheek bones, or more superficial to fill in fine lines, such as those around the mouth. Most fillers can last anywhere from 4 -12 months after which they are absorbed by the body, though there is a longer lasting filler which has been shown to last five years!

    There are several fillers on the market today. Common examples are Juvederm and Restylane. These are made of hyaluronic acid, a substance naturally found in the skin and connective tissue. Hyaluronic acid can be easily dissolved should the patient experience any problems or simply not like the look of the filler. Other fillers include Radiesse, Sculptra, and Bellafil. They all have different properties, and should be chosen with specific intent based on the patient’s desired achievement.

    Pro’s:

    • It is non-invasive
    • Depending on the filler, you can have instant results
    • The results are typically long-lasting – at least 6 months
    • Fillers typically add to a more youthful appearance by replenishing volume in areas lost by the aging process

    Cons:

    • It can be more uncomfortable than a neuromodulator injection, but with topical anesthesia/nerve block, most patients find these procedures to be quite tolerable
    • If the injected filler is NOT a hyaluronic acid filler, it cannot be easily dissolved
    • There are a few possible side effects to using injectable fillers, most of which resolve shortly after the procedure. The most common side effects are swelling and bruising.

    Choosing What Works For You

    The choice to have any cosmetic work done is up to you. It is advisable that you speak to your doctor to find out which treatment is recommended for you. Remember, there are permanent or semi-permanent fillers available on the market, but many patients are choosing temporary fillers to get a feel for how they would look and if they’re happy with the treatment before using a more permanent filler.

    You can speak to your doctor about using both a neuromodulator and an injectable filler at the same time. They are used for completely different purposes, and the combination adds even more to a youthful appearance. Remember to also discuss with your cosmetic dermatologist if you are on any medication or if you have any health conditions.

    If you’d like more information about neuromodulators and injectable fillers, speak to one of the phenomenal team members at Siperstein Dermatology group. We have teams dedicated to excellence – providing personalized care with the latest technology and newest techniques in both Boca Raton and Boynton Beach!