How to Get Rid of Crow's Feet
When patients seek treatment for crow’s feet, they are referring to wrinkles that develop at the outside corners of either eye that appear to radiate outward, similar to the shape of a bird’s foot. These lines are especially noticeable when performing certain facial expressions, such as squinting and smiling.
These lines occur naturally over time, as the constant movements of our face pinch the upper layers of our skin and the natural production of collagen lessens with age. This inevitable process results in the formation of both dynamic and static crow’s feet lines. Dynamic lines are those noticed only when making a specific expression, while static lines are visible when the face is in a resting position. Fortunately, both of these types of unsightly lines are similarly treated.
Treatment for Crow’s Feet
Botox is the preferred treatment for crow's feet. However, it is important to understand how Botox works and what it will and will not do. Botox is a muscle relaxer that is responsible for temporarily relaxing specific muscles and therefore eases the appearance of dynamic lines created by those muscles. It is very effective for treating crow’s feet, specifically in cases where a patient’s lines look better when they are not smiling, as it prevents the area near the eyes from wrinkling due to expressive movements.
In addition to dynamic lines, some patients may notice some fine lines in their skin even when not making an expression - these lines are referred to as static lines. These wrinkles in the skin are not immediately improved by Botox, but can be over time. This is because as a patient keeps up with Botox, the skin in that area will naturally regenerate, causing static lines to soften. Keep in mind this effect may take several Botox treatments to occur.
Every patient’s needs are different, so the key to achieving great results from your crow’s feet treatment is working closely with a skilled doctor. Botox can take as long as two weeks to reach its desired effect, so patients are encouraged to consult with their doctor during this time to gradually fine tune their treatment.
Things to Be Aware Of
While Botox is excellent for crow’s feet, there needs to be caution when Botox is delivered near the lower eyelid. The muscles in that area are responsible for eye closure and pumping away natural tears, so if the area is not carefully treated, a patient could experience some temporary side effects such as dry eyes or increased tearing. In addition, if a patient has a tendency to swell and receives Botox for crow’s feet close to the lower eyelid, it is possible that an undesirable appearance could result. This can virtually always be avoided and will be discussed with you in detail at the time of your consultation.
The good news is that any problem you may see in this area is due to fluid collection, which is always temporary.
For patients with deep static lines that are not immediately treatable with Botox, hyaluronic acid fillers such as Juvederm or Volbella are a safe treatment option to pair with Botox. In fact, hyaluronic acid fillers tend to last longer in areas that have less movement, so patients that receive Botox in an area also treated by injectable fillers they will typically see their results last longer than expected.