Why Botox May Not be the Ideal Brow Lift for Every Person

Years ago, we knew Botox as the formidable foe of frown lines. That’s what the drug was initially approved to correct. That was in 2002. Now, in 2020, Botox is the go-to injectable for frown lines, forehead lines, downturned corners of the mouth, migraines, excessive sweating, and the aging brow line. As we age, the muscles that are commonly used in facial expression become tense, this can affect the eyebrows, causing them to drop lower than the upper orbital rim. When this happens, Botox is often the first treatment that comes to mind. But is it always the right treatment? No.

How Botox Lifts the Eyebrows

Referring to injectable treatment as a Botox brow lift may be slightly misleading. Botox does not physically lift the eyebrows. The way that this drug works is by diminishing muscle movement. The corrugator and the orbicularis oculi muscles, in particular, pull the eyebrows down. There is another muscle, the frontalis muscle, that pulls the eyebrows up. These two groups of muscles work in opposition to each other. By injecting Botox, what we do is weaken the downward pull of the contracted corrugator and orbicularis oculi muscles, stopping the opposition to the frontalis muscles. The result is a lifted brow line. Sounds easy enough, right?

The Potential Problem

The use of Botox as a brow lift assumes that the frontalis muscle that pulls the brow upward is strong. If the muscle is strong and loses its opposition, it works to hold the brow line higher. If the frontalis muscle is not strong, the effects of Botox injections will be limited if at all noticeable. This is not a matter of needing more Botox. You can only weaken the orbicularis oculi and corrugator muscles so much without causing unwanted effects. In this instance, what may be needed is a surgical brow lift.

Please don’t assume that because we are a plastic surgery office that we don’t believe in the power of Botox. We use this product routinely, as well as several other effective injectables. Additionally, our patients can explore other nonsurgical options for facial rejuvenation, such as ThermiRase. But it’s also important to review anatomy and understand how various treatments get the results they do. We intend to get the best results for each of our patients by tailoring treatment to their needs.

Explore your options for a surgical or non-surgical brow lift at 502-425-5200.

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