The moment that you begin to consider Botox, or other forms of plastic surgery, you suddenly realize that horror stories are everywhere - women who ended up with infections, massive duck lips, or as Boston Legal portrayed, patients whose injections came not from their own body fat but from their doctor’s. Thankfully, these tragedies are easily avoidable with some caution and common sense.
To aid you in your search for safe Botox treatments, here are eight things to pay attention to…
Finding a qualified, knowledgeable, vetted, and pleasant board certified plastic surgeon does not have to be difficult.
1. Talk to friends who have had Botox injections - who is their go-to surgeon?
First, consider those you trust in other areas of life. Has anybody had Botox done recently? A close friend or family member can offer you a straightforward run-through of the entire procedure, from the consultation with the physician to the injections themselves. They probably have a go-to plastic surgeon right in your area who they could refer you to. There’s no better place to begin your search.
2. Do your research: read up on patient evaluations of local surgeons.
As is first instinct to do in this day and age anyway, take to the Net before deciding on the best specialist for your Botox treatment. Understanding is power. Check out social media for groups dedicated to Botox. Read through evaluation after evaluation to get a feeling for previous patients' experiences. This can tell you quite a bit about how each doctor and his office operates on a daily basis.
Consider relevant questions: Are the treatment areas comfortable? Are the nurses patient? Are the waits long?
3. Take both testimonials and photos with a grain of salt.
While testimonials on Yelp and RealSelf.com, not to mention the social media pages of clients can be wonderful resources, they can also be a source of false information. Anonymous testimonials might be written by patients seeking retribution or reward, rather than being written from an even and honest perspective.
In the same vein, be conscientious of "before and after" photos. Illegitimate offices might doctor these pictures. Ensure the make-up, lighting, and clothing match in both the “before” and “after.” Then you can be confident that the patient truly experienced the claimed results.
4. Examine the qualifications of each potential doctor.
Locate a couple of choices? Great. Now check to ensure they have the proper credentials. Physicians call themselves 'surgeon,' 'visual doctor,' or 'aesthetic medication specialist,' all of which are not plastic surgeons.
These professionals likely have the ability to handle "non-invasive" procedures, such as the injectables of the world (Botox, Juvederm, etc.), laser treatments, chemical peels, or dermabrasions.
Non-ABPS certified professionals should be supervised and practicing within the office of a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon.
What Does It Mean To Be A Board Certified Plastic Surgeon?
Confirming that your doctor is licensed by the American Board of Plastic Surgery is a warranty that the surgeon has obtained years of thorough medical training, passed extremely rigorous examinations, and received all of the proper accreditations to practice plastic surgery within the United States.
Plastic surgeon training consists of sixteen years of education post high school, including specified training in both reconstructive and aesthetic forms of cosmetic surgery, all completed under authorized supervision through proper medical institutions.
Board-certified plastic surgeons have not only met these lengthy, rigorous demands before they’re even able to sit for their board exams, but they have also successfully passed a written and 2-day oral exam. The doctors are critically evaluated on their knowledge of plastic surgery, their moral standing in the medical field, and their safe and reliable strategies to address reconstructive and cosmetic challenges. Only the top third of candidates pass the examination and receive their certification.
The critical words to remember are certified and experienced.
The American Board of Cosmetic Surgery aims to create a network of cosmetic surgeons who are guaranteed to be safe, ethical, who have a thorough knowledge of the entire spectrum of cosmetic surgery, and who are guaranteed to always meet the highest possible standards with their work. Dr. Vinyard is certified with the ABPS and he and his staff would love to meet with you for a free Botox consultation!
5. Come prepared to ask questions.
As you would for a job interview, it’s important to come prepared with a list of concerns to ask the doctor in person. It’s important to see pictures of the doctor's previous job, and find out how experienced they are at Botox injections. It also gives you an opportunity to discuss your goals and ensure that you are both on the same page.
This is also the time to ensure that you understand all relevant costs for the injections. You don’t want to be blind-sighted by any unexpected charges.
Discuss all applicable factors and fees with your doctor ahead of time.
6. Remember that you want a cosmetic surgeon who is both respectful and practical, in addition to being competent.
While you're asking questions, be wary of warnings. A noticeable, yet important one is a doctor's bedside manner. If a specialist appears regularly rushed, pressures you to go through with a certain procedure, warns you against searching for outside perspectives, or delegates most of the care after the treatment to others, beware.
An additional warning is a specialist who is not pragmatic, including both the advantages and disadvantages of any treatment in his discussion of it.
If the doctor sounds more like a car salesman than a medical professional, that's a major warning sign.
7. Ensure the office is spick-and-span and the personnel is friendly.
Make sure that you feel comfortable in the office where you'll be having the Botox injections. Don’t choose a doctor whose office makes you feel stressed or anxious because it smells, is dirty, or is disorganized. Enjoying your time in the surgeon’s office and interacting with his staff is just as important as choosing the specialist himself.
Dr. Vinyard’s #1 objective is to ensure that each and every patient is treated as the VIP that they are! Our office’s top priority will always be making sure that you are comfortable in the office environment, confident with our expertise, and
8. Most importantly: listen to your gut.
If you feel uncomfortable for any reason, even if you cannot seem to pinpoint specifically why, don’t follow through with that particular office or doctor. The relationship you have with your plastic surgeon is a private and personal one.
Taking your time ensuring that you’re comfortable with every aspect of the Botox process is essential.
Keep in mind that your plastic surgeon is someone who you’ll be sharing your intimate body fears, concerns, and self-consciousness with. They need to understand what areas of your face and body you don’t like, and have the opportunity to exam you to determine the best treatment plan. That’s not a relationship you can have with just any doctor - be sure to choose one who is respectful, kind, and clicks well with your personality. Look for a surgeon willing to take the extra time to address your concerns, who is as professional as possible without shedding that human touch, and who maintains a hands-on mentality of responding to any issues you bring up between treatments.
Though it might not be an overnight process, finding a great plastic surgeon to begin Botox injections with is far from impossible. If you’re ready to speak with someone about moving forward with Botox injections, we would love to discuss Dr. Vinyard’s years of experience, certified credentials, and true expertise with you!