Wrinkle treatment options are increasingly abundant. There are numerous over-the-counter products, and people are also turning to their healthcare providers for longer-lasting options. Botulinum toxin type A (Botox) and dermal fillers are both long-lasting treatments. Each procedure can be used for wrinkles, but there are several differences between the two to consider.
Botox and dermal fillers alike may be used to treat wrinkles on the face. Each treatment is also delivered via injection. Still, both options have slightly different uses.
Botox itself is a muscle relaxer made from bacteria. It’s been on the market for over two decades and has been used to treat neurological disorders that cause muscle weakness. It’s also used for the treatment of migraines and other medical conditions.
For wrinkle treatment, Botox is primarily used to treat dynamic wrinkles. These wrinkles occur naturally around the eyes and mouth, as well as in between your eyebrows. They become more pronounced with age. Botox injections relax the muscles near these wrinkles. Not allowing the muscles to move reduces the appearance of dynamic wrinkles.
Botox is not used for fine lines caused by collagen breakdown.
Your healthcare provider will inject the muscles that contribute to the specific wrinkles you want treated. The injection process itself takes just a few minutes with noticeable results within two weeks.
Dermal fillers also treat wrinkles on the face. They’re primarily used to treat smile lines, though the fillers can also be used to plump up the lips or cheeks. Sometimes, they’re used for hand treatments or to reduce the appearance of scars. Dermal fillers aren’t approved for plumping up other areas of the body, though, such as the breasts.
Dermal fillers come in different forms, and like Botox, they’re injectable. Some are temporary and used primarily for soft tissues in the face along the smile lines. The U.S. Food and Drug AdministrationTrusted Source has approved the following options:
- calcium hydroxylapatite (Radiesse), a temporary gel solution that lasts for 18 months
- collagen, a temporary material that lasts for up to four months
- hyaluronic acid, a temporary material that loses its effect after 6 to 12 months
- poly-L-lactic acid (Sculptra, Sculptra Aesthetic), a man-made material that lasts about two years
- polymethylmethacrylate beads, the only permanent type of dermal filler available