Did you know that eliminating facial expressions like smile lines and frown lines could affect you psychologically, as well as your relatability to friends or to a love interest?
The “facial feedback hypothesis” states that when we see an angry or happy facial expression, we flex or contract the muscles in our own face in order to simulate the expression. This is an unconscious process. As our facial muscles mimic another person’s smile or scowl, signals are sent to our brains to help us interpret them. This is thought to not only help us identify other people’s emotional states, but to experience them ourselves. But what happens if you’re eliminating facial expressions through injectables like Botulinum toxin A (BoNTA)?
Does using Botulinum toxin A make you seem less empathetic?
A research study by UCI found that having Botulinum toxin injections to reduce frown lines and other facial expressions may change the way other people’s brains interpret and process their emotion – and therefore their interaction with you.
And, because facial expressions and your emotional state are closely linked, a lack of them could reduce the intensity of your emotions.
In The Expression of Emotions in Man and Animals, Charles Darwin wrote: “The free expression by outward signs of an emotion intensifies it. On the other hand, the repression, as far as this is possible, of all outward signs softens our emotions… Even the simulation of an emotion tends to arouse it in our mind.”
Obviously Botulinum toxin injections weren’t being used back in his day!
Many people have cosmetic Botulinum toxin to look more attractive when they’re looking for a life partner. Yet, it might have the opposite effect if it impacts the empathy needed for long-term relationships.
Finding an aesthetic doctor that will administer the right amount of product – who will soften frown lines, smile lines and forehead wrinkles rather than eliminate them completely – is therefore so important on a few levels.
Could the lack of facial expressions make you less depressed?
So we see where eliminating frown lines or smile lines might be risky. But is there an advantage to it?
If the stimulation of the muscles increases the emotions, then the opposite may happen too. Other research has found that stopping the forehead from frowning may help patients with depression. It’s not just the forehead wrinkles where the muscles tighten – all the muscles on your face are affected. By relaxing different muscles in the face, you break the feedback between the muscles and the brain (or emotion).
Fillers may affect your relationships with others too
While many people have dermal fillers to make them look more attractive or younger, overdoing them can actually make a person look tired – and even a bit odd!
Even if you’re trying to keep to a natural look, and not getting too much done at once, having fillers too frequently can lead to filler fatigue. This is when skin laxity is affected so that once the filler dissolves you’re left with major ‘droopiness’. One doctor recounts a story where they thought a new patient who came in had actually had a stroke!
The many benefits of Botulinum toxin A(BoNTA)
First, some science! Wrinkles and fine lines develop with both ageing plus repetitive muscle movement; an anti-wrinkle Injection (BoNTA) is a neuro-muscular blocker that inhibits neurotransmitter function. It blocks the transmission of acetylcholine from the neuron to the muscle and so prevents muscle contraction.
Cosmetically, it is used to soften or remove:
• frown lines, horizontal forehead lines, crow’s feet
• under-eye lines
• heavy or square jaws
• nasal flare, chin dimpling and chin creases
• fine vertical lines on the upper lips
• neckline and chest wrinkles
It can also:
• lift brows
• lift the corners of the mouth
• redefine the jawline and neck to subtly lift the jowls a wide-eyed look when you smile
This treatment is so versatile that it can also help reduce hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating in the armpits, foreheads, and hands) and treat chronic migraine and headaches, teeth grinding and jaw clenching.
Which aesthetic doctor
Find an aesthetic doctor who understands the nuances of these issues over just the relevant medical qualifications. They should understand how lessening your facial expressions too much can impact how you come across to friends and colleagues. Or how reducing frown lines or smile lines may affect your mental health. You definitely don’t want to be expressionless!
What’s more, an aesthetic doctor must have facial anatomy knowledge, and experience in finding a safe injection site, avoiding all the major blood vessels that can result in accidents and complicated side effects. Experienced hands and good injection techniques allow injectors to deliver safe and natural results catering to the different needs of each patient.
Dr Ivan Puah, Medical Director at Amaris B. Clinic, exemplifies these qualities in his practice. Dr Puah was appointed trainer to fellow doctors on Botulinum Toxin and Dermal Fillers for Allergan Singapore and Merz, a testament standing within the industry.
If you are looking for natural-looking results with FDA-approved botulinum toxin and dermal fillers injections, freely contact Amaris B. Clinic today!
Written in collaboration with:
Amaris B. Clinic
140 Arab Street
6536 4211 | amaris-b.com