Botox is a cosmetic procedure that results in younger-looking skin.
It uses botulinum toxin type A in areas where wrinkles form most, such as around the eyes and on the forehead. Botox can also be used to treat migraines and excess sweating.
One of the most commonly asked questions (especially by people who love to work out) is whether you can exercise after Botox.
This article will provide an answer to that question, as well as explore other post-treatment guidelines you should follow to guarantee your best skin yet.
Exercise after Botox isn’t recommended for these three main reasons:
It puts pressure on the injection site
After you get Botox, your doctor will caution you to avoid touching your face for at least the first 4 hours.
Adding any pressure could cause the Botox to migrate from where it was injected. It’s also recommended your avoid touching your face because the area might still be sensitive and prone to discomfort.
If you’re someone who often wipes away sweat when working out, you might be applying pressure to your face without even realizing it.
In addition, certain activities, such as cycling or swimming, require head or facial gear that applies pressure to common injection sites.
It increases blood flow
Strenuous exercise means that your heart is really pumping. That’s good for your cardiovascular system, but not so great for your Botox.
Increased blood flow could cause Botox diffusion away from the initial injection site. As a result, it could temporarily paralyze surrounding muscles.
Increased blood pressure can lead to bruising and swelling at the injection site.
It requires too much movement
After getting Botox, it’s important to avoid too many changes in head position. Doing so could also cause the Botox to migrate.
This is a common occurrence even with low-impact exercises, such as yoga or Pilates — meaning that you might be one Downward Dog away from less-than-desired results.
Facial strain from exercise is another concern.
While you should always follow your doctor’s recommendations, the general rule is to wait at least 4 hours to exercise. This includes bending over or lying down.
However, 24 hours is the ideal amount of time to wait. To really play it safe, some doctors may recommend that you wait up to a week before exerting yourself in any major way.
Facial exercises are OK
While avoiding exercising post-Botox might be bad news for avid fitness fans, you don’t have to give up your workouts completely.
It’s highly recommended that you move your face around a lot after getting Botox. This includes smiling, frowning, and raising your eyebrows. It’s similar to facial exercises, minus the touching.
Facial movement may look — and feel — silly, but it actually helps the Botox work better.
Either before or after getting Botox, your doctor will outline a list of do’s and don’ts that you should follow.
In addition to not touching your face, these are the things you should avoid:
- lying down
- bending down
- drinking alcohol
- consuming too much caffeine
- rubbing or adding any pressure to the area
- taking a hot shower or bath
- taking any pain relievers that thin the blood
- exposing yourself to excessive heat conditions, such as those created by sun lamps, tanning beds, or saunas
- exposing yourself to extremely cold temperatures
- applying makeup
- applying tretinoin (Retin-A) products
- sleeping on your face for the first night
- getting a facial or any other facial procedure done for the first 2 weeks
- getting a spray tan
- adding pressure when removing makeup or cleansing the face
- wearing a shower cap
- getting your eyebrows waxed, threaded, or tweezed
While less common, serious side effects from Botox can happen. If you’re experiencing a side effect from Botox, either call or take a trip to your provider immediately.
Be on the lookout for the following signs and symptoms:
- swollen or drooping eyes
- trouble breathing
- increased pain
- increased swelling
- feeling faint
- muscle weakness, especially in an area that wasn’t injected
- double vision
Botox is a cosmetic procedure that reduces the appearance of wrinkles, leaving you with younger-looking skin. To get the most benefits, it’s up to you to follow your doctor’s post-treatment advice.
This includes avoiding any strenuous exercise for at least 24 hours for several reasons. For instance, increased blood flow from an elevated heart rate could cause the Botox to metabolize too quickly and migrate to other areas of the body.
If you experience any serious side effects, such as trouble breathing, blisters, or intense swelling, be sure to call your doctor or visit them right away.
Staying away from the gym, even for the day, might be difficult for some people, but it’s worth it to ensure good results. If nothing else, look at it as an excellent excuse to take a well-deserved rest day.