As a clinician, patients look to you for professional advice about anti-aging procedures. They respect your advice and experience. And while Botox may be popular, microneedling is rapidly becoming the procedure of choice for many clinicians and patients. Which is right for any individual patient depends on their personal aesthetic goals, but you can certainly help them weigh the options.
How Botox Works
Botox smooths the appearance of lines and wrinkles but does not directly treat the surface of the skin. It is injected into the underlying muscle, partially paralyzing it. This restricts muscle mobility – not so much that it prevents patients from making normal facial expressions, but enough to reduce wrinkling when the patient frowns or squints. This can also help prevent wrinkles from deepening over time.
For anti-aging, Botox injections are most commonly used on frown lines and crow’s feet. Patients no longer have to worry about the face-freezing results formerly associated with this product. You can now use Botox more judiciously, to achieve far more subtle effects. The amount required depends on the severity of each patient’s wrinkles and their desired results. When more than one Botox syringe is indicated, most clinicians recommend administering injections in multiple sessions, rather than all at once.
The effects of Botox slowly diminish, but injections can be repeated indefinitely if your patient wants to maintain their results. You can schedule sessions at 3-6 month intervals, depending on each patient’s need.
How Microneedling Works
This procedure aims to rejuvenate the skin’s appearance by stimulating the production of healthy new cells. This literally renews the skin, so the result is smoother, more radiant, and younger-looking.
Advanced technology now enables clinicians to use a SkinPen® device. This wireless, hand-held tool delivers superior results for patients, in a virtually pain-free procedure. SkinPen® microneedling can be highly targeted, making it easy for you to treat even narrow or hard to reach areas such as around the nose. The procedure can be used anywhere on the body.
Tiny needles create microscopic punctures. Then the body works naturally to repair these wounds. Newly-formed capillaries increase blood flow, and newly-produced collagen and elastin improve the structure and texture of the skin. SkinPen® microneedling does not significantly damage the epidermis and there is virtually no risk of infection or scarring from the procedure.
Microneedling is not a harsh procedure, so it works gradually. Some results are visible almost immediately, and they become more apparent as the skin heals. But clinicians usually recommend multiple procedures to address fine to moderate wrinkles and additional procedures to address deep wrinkles or other conditions such as acne scars. Sessions are usually spaced about a month apart, giving the skin ample time to continue healing between procedures.
Perhaps Both Procedures Are The Right Choice
Both microneedling and Botox injections are safe and effective for patients with all skin types. Depending on patient needs, you may even recommend both, using microneedling to improve the surface and deeper condition of the skin, with Botox injections to help improve results longer term. Ask your physician if one or both are right for you.