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how to prevent bruising after Botox

Ask an Injector: How To Prevent & Treat Bruising After Botox & Fillers

Aesthetics / March 6, 2022

Botox and dermal fillers are two of the most popular aesthetic treatments in 2022. With incredible versatility to enhance, rewind the clock, and achieve different types of skin goals, it’s no wonder! Though these treatments are pretty convenient—with short treatment times of just 15 to 40 minutes—one issue many people face is bruising. 

At Envision Aesthetics, Dr. Katherine Whipple performs all of our injectable treatments. As a board-certified cosmetic and oculofacial plastic surgeon, she has a unique knowledge of delicate treatment areas around the eyes and face. One of the most common questions Dr. Whipple receives from patients is “How do I prevent bruising?” after Botox or filler treatments. 

Below, we discuss how to prevent and treat bruising after botox, fillers, and other types of facial aesthetic treatments! 

What causes bruising after Botox and filler?

In general, bruising is caused by skin trauma from an injury. A bruise occurs when blood vessels are damaged beneath the skin, causing discoloration. 

In the case of injectables like Botox, bruising may happen from the injections if a blood vessel is touched during the process. Even the best providers may cause some bruising after a treatment, but a good provider does work to minimize bruising.

How to prevent bruising after Botox & fillers

Go to an injectable expert

It’s important to go to an expert provider for your injectable treatment. Not only will you get the best results, but a highly skilled injector will take the care to minimize bruising and swelling as best as they can. 

Look for a provider with education and training, years of experience, a portfolio of work, and testimonials online or even word of mouth. You should also book a consultation with your injector prior to treatment. 

Get an in-depth consultation

At Envision Aesthetics, our providers take the time to learn about your skin and desired results. During your consultation, we’ll examine your skin and find the best treatment and technique to suit your needs and goals. We will also answer any of your questions and discuss any pre- or post-care instructions with you. 

physician performing Botox injections on a patient after a consultation

Much of the below information is what we cover during these consultations, but we want to make sure anyone can get this information! Keep reading to learn more about preventing bruising after Botox and fillers.

Medications to avoid

Since bruising typically happens from damaged blood vessels, you want to avoid blood-thinning medications. This is because blood-thinning medications may keep the blood from clotting; clotting keeps bruises from spreading and becoming larger. 

Some of the most common medications we recommend avoiding* before Botox or filler are:

  • Aspirin like Bayer or Excedrin
  • Blood-thinning supplements like Vitamin E or Fish Oil
  • Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) 

* If you are taking this medication under direction of your doctor, be sure to speak with him or her for permission before discontinuing it.

What to do before Botox or filler

Avoid alcohol

Since alcohol constricts blood vessels, it’s best to avoid it for 2 days prior to your appointment for Botox or filler. Alcohol makes your skin more susceptible to bruising.

Stop retinoid use

Though retinoids don’t necessarily contribute to bruising, you do want to give your skin a break on retinoids products for 2 days before and 2 days after your injections. This will prevent irritation as your skin heals.

Take Arnica supplements before 

Arnica montana is a supplement that’s known to help prevent bruising and swelling. It’s important to get a high-grade form of this supplement. We personally recommend DermaVance Arnika Forte (which is available for purchase in-office or online!). 

Anika Forte capsules to prevent bruising after Botox

The capsules are vegetarian and contain arnica, bromelain, antioxidants, and bioflavonoids to speed up healing, plus reduce bruising and swelling from fillers, injections, and procedures.

⚠️ Not all Arnica supplements are the same concentration. Make sure you purchase supplements from a quality provider. 

Take Tylenol if needed 

Everyone’s pain tolerance is different. If needed, you can take Tylenol before your appointment to help alleviate any pain. Many patients report the injections feeling like a quick prick, but some report fillers to be a bit more painful than Botox, as there is more happening to the tissue from the volume enhancement of fillers.

Post-Treatment

In general, you should “baby” your skin after treatment to help prevent bruising and promote healing. Below are our top tips for post-treatment care. 

Do not lie down for at least 4 hours

Botox and filler need time to settle into the tissues, so you should avoid laying down for the first 4 hours after your injections and keep your head elevated.

Use OcuMend gel pads

One of our favorite products to recommend for post-procedure care is the OcuMend gel pads by Cearna. These pads significantly reduce swelling and bruising after procedures. They cover about half of the cheek, and you can use multiple pads at once or just 1 or 2 where you need them. 

Note: This product also helps with pain! 

Take Arnica supplements

As mentioned earlier, taking Arnica supplements both before and after your treatment is the best approach to help prevent or reduce bruising and swelling. 

Depending on if you’re using it for Botox, filler, or a surgical procedure, your provider may recommend taking the supplement for a longer period of time. A 14-day supply of the DermaVance Arinka Forte is the perfect amount for pre and post-surgical care. 

Apply cooling packs

You may find cool packs helpful to relieve any discomfort, bruising, or swelling during the 24 hours after your injections. Be sure not to over ice the area and use the cool packs in 30-minute sessions. Do not use much pressure or movement on the skin while doing so!

Elevate your head while sleeping

To allow for the Botox or filler to settle into place correctly, keep your head elevated while sleeping for the next few days. 

What to avoid

Blood-thinning medications

Just like pre-treatment, you should avoid blood-thinning medications and supplements for a few days after your injections or other procedure to reduce or prevent bruising. 

  • Aspirin like Bayer or Excedrin
  • Blood-thinning supplements like Vitamin E or Fish Oil
  • Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) 

* If you are taking this medication under direction of your doctor, be sure to speak with him or her for permission before discontinuing it.

Vigorous exercise

Exercise increases blood flow, which could disrupt/diffuse the Botox or filler placements. You should avoid high-intensity exercise for the first 48 hours after your injections. Light exercise like a walk is fine! 

Massaging the area for 12 hours

You should not touch and/or massage the skin on and around the injection site for 12 hours after the injection. Rubbing the skin could move the product from its intended placement before the product is settled and can impact your results. 

Frequently Asked Questions | Botox & Filler

Botox

What does Botox feel like? Does Botox hurt?

Most patients agree that getting Botox feels like a slight pinch and is not too uncomfortable. At Envision Aesthetics, Dr. Whipple works quickly and accurately, treating Botox patients in as little as 15 minutes to minimize any discomfort.

How long does Botox last?

Typically, Botox results last between 3 to 6 months. 

What is the difference between Botox and filler?

The difference between Botox and filler is that Botox is a neurotoxin. 

Neurotoxins (sometimes called neuromodulators) like Botox, Dysport, and Xeomin relax muscle movement to smooth out lines and wrinkles and prevent new ones from forming. Filler “fills” in areas of lost volume, deep wrinkles, or adds to certain features to enhance, such as the lips.

Filler

What does it feel like? Does it hurt?

Similar to Botox, the actual injection of filler feels like a pinch. Since filler adds volume, you may feel a new sensation of fullness that you did not have before. This will go away as you get used to results. Filler has a higher rate of post-procedure swelling and bruising that may cause discomfort. 

Related: How To Reduce Bruising After Lip Fillers

How long do dermal fillers last?

Everyone’s body processes differently, so filler can last anywhere from 6 to 18 months. Different filler brands can also vary in how long the results last.

Is dermal filler better than Botox?

Whether you think dermal filler is better than Botox is totally subjective. For some people looking to restore lost volume and/or enhance a feature, dermal filler may be the best option. For others just looking to soften and prevent lines and wrinkles, Botox is fantastic. 

Both injectables are great for different reasons, and a consultation with a provider can help you find what’s best for you.

Visit the experts at Envision Aesthetics for the best aesthetic care!

Envision Aesthetics is conveniently located near the expressway, making it easily accessible for both the east and west sides of Rochester. We check every box of what makes an amazing medical spa. With highly trained staff and high-quality products and treatments, we’re here to give you the best experience for your aesthetic enhancements. 

No matter what your goals are, we’re here to help! Get started with our virtual consultation tool and get on the path to looking and feeling your best. Or, if you’d prefer, schedule an appointment to come see us and learn more about preventing bruising after Botox, fillers, and other procedures!

The safety and comfort of our customers are top priorities for us. We will always make sure that you’re comfortable with your decisions and happy with your results for a more confident you!

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