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One of the most common side effects associated with aesthetic injections is bruising. Even if you have never bruised before, it is always a possibility. Why? Because bruises are just a small hematoma; they occur when small blood vessels get punctured leaking their contents into the surrounding tissue. It is perfectly normal to bruise from injections.


All aesthetic injections should be done at least one month prior to any special event such as wedding, engagement, anniversary, birthday, major holiday, or photo shoot. Bruising and swelling after injections can last up to 14 days in some cases. Please refrain from drinking alcohol, and taking pain medications (NSAIDS) such as Ibuprofen, Motrin, Aspirin or Advil, as well as vitamins, fish oil and other herbal supplements for 3-5 days prior to your visit, to minimize the chances of bruising. Some herbal supplements may increase risk of bruising. Herbs including gingko biloba, ginseng, ginger, glucosamine, turmeric, angelica and clove all have the potential to thin the blood slightly. This can make bruising more likely, especially if more than one of these herbs are taken together.


Please keep in mind, there is an important difference between Botox and Dysport: they are dosed differently. It takes 3 units of Dysport to equal muscle relaxing strength of 1 unit of Botox. This distinction is very important, for example 50 units of Botox equals 150 units of Dysport. 

​Dysport has the quickest “onset” of action compared to Botox; typically requiring 24 hours for the results to be seen. Botox can take up to 72 hours for the results to settle. Although, it does take full 2 weeks for see the full effect for both products.

Dynamic vs. static wrinkles

Lines or wrinkles can be dynamic or static. Dynamic wrinkles appear when muscles contract during facial expression and speech. Conversely, static wrinkles are visible when the face is resting but may become more obvious with muscle contraction. 


Over time, dynamic lines become static.


Botox and Dysport injections help fight off dynamic wrinkles that become more prominent with age. Botox and Dysport do not eliminate static lines but with regular treatments every 4-6 months, even static lines can become less pronounced. 


Return to your normal activities

Botox and Dysport injections do not require any recovery time. Therefore, you will not have to take off work or school. You can resume your usual activities right after the procedure.

Wait 24 hours to exercise

If exercise is part of your daily routine, wait at least 24 hours to work out. Physical activity increases blood flow, which may increase the risk of bruising and swelling. Exercise also contracts your muscles, which may decrease the toxin’s effectiveness. 


Go makeup-free

Take a break from makeup for 24 hours. This includes sunblock, moisturizing cream, lotion, foundation, makeup remover, and other skincare products.

Do not drink alcohol

Wait at least 24 hours after your injection before consuming alcohol.


Do not touch your face

To avoid spreading the toxin, don’t touch your face for at least 1 day. This includes professional massages on the treated areas. 


Avoid other skin treatments

Toxin needs some time to settle into the muscle. For the first 24 hours, avoid other skin treatments like:

  • Facial treatment

  • Facial massage

  • Exfoliating scrub


Getting these treatments too soon may reduce the effectiveness of your injections.

Do not shower right after the treatment

We recommend refraining from washing your hair and showering right after toxin treatment. The heat from a shower increases blood flow to your face and causes the toxin to shift, leaving you with unnatural results. You should avoid soaking in a hot tub, sitting in a steam shower, and cleansing your face with hot water.

Sit up

Sit up for the first 4 hours after getting Botox or Dysport injections. Bending or lying down might spread the toxin and promote bruising and swelling.


Do not sleep on the treated areas

Try your best to avoid sleeping on the injected areas. This will minimize the physical pressure and let the toxin settle into your muscles. Also, avoid sleeping within 4 hours after your procedure.


Stay out of the sun

Avoid sun exposure for at least 4 hours. The heat can promote flushing and increase your blood pressure, which may encourage bruising and swelling. To be extra safe, avoid the sun for 24 to 48 hours.

It’s also best to avoid other forms of heat exposure, such as:

  • Tanning bed

  • Hot tub

  • Hot shower or bath

  • Sauna

Pain, swelling and bruising relief

Pain is usually mild-moderate after toxin injections. Tylenol may be taken as directed for pain relief. You should avoid NSAIDs (Aspirin, Ibuprofen, Motrin, and Advil) as they can increase the chance of bruising at the injection site.


Over-the-counter Arnica cream or gel and also Arnica tablets can be used after the treatment to reduce bruising and swelling. 

Some patients take Bromelain supplements as a preventative for bruising and swelling. Bromelain is a group of enzymes found in pineapple juice and in the pineapple stem.

Staying well hydrated keeps the flow of fluid around your face and speeds up the healing process.

Treatment during menstrual period

We advise against having any kind of aesthetic procedures done during menstruation, as the injections tend to be more uncomfortable despite local anesthetic and there are far more episodes of patients feeling faint or nauseated following the injections during this time. 

For any questions about aftercare instructions, please call or text Dr. DuBuske at:

  • 703-345-0000 if you are a patient in our McLean, Virginia practice

  • 617-965-0000 if you are a patient in our Newton, Massachusetts practice

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