For the last few decades, Botox has been used as a cosmetic treatment for anti-aging purposes. People get Botox on wrinkles and skin lines to help the skin appear smoother and younger. Recently, younger people are using what's called "preventative botox" to help diminish the effects of aging before it becomes prominent.
Short for botulinum toxin, Botox is a protein that’s injected in small doses to reduces wrinkles by stopping nerve signals from getting to muscles. Botox essentially paralyzes muscles by blocking acetylcholine, the chemical that causes muscles to contract. This typically wears off after three to six months, leading people to go back to get more injections to upkeep their youthful look.
Botox is remarkably popular. It was a $3.169 billion business in 2017 and that number is only expected to increase. Botox has even become streamlined with sleek store-fronts offering consultations and the cosmetic procedures at a quicker rate than traditional clinics. Though one would assume that it would be mainly popular with an older crowd, it has become a mainstay with young people, too. According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the rate of women in their 20s doing having Botox procedures from 2010 to 2018 jumped 28 percent. But is preventative Botox worth it?
The goal of preventative Botox is to tackle wrinkles and fine-lines before they become super prominent. Towards your mid- to late-20s, early signs of aging start to appear on your skin. While normal usage of Botox is meant to reverse aging, preventative Botox is meant to stop the aging process from even beginning. It’s often more subtle and involves lower doses than regular Botox procedures. Although Botox is FDA approved and is always administered by a certified dermatologist, using it preemptively is relatively new terrain.
Botox certainly isn't a permanent "fix" for your anti-aging ailments, and it also isn't cheap. While preventative botox prices vary greatly from salon to salon, region to region and even practitioner to practitioner, you can expect it to cost between $500 to $1000 per year. However, since the cost of individual procedures can be anywhere from $300 to $700, the overall price of your Botox regimen will be dependent greatly on your needs.
If you search through Google, you surely can find a plethora of “Botox horror stories.” However, preventative botox side effects are a bit more subtle and manifest themselves over time.
Speaking to Vogue, a dermatologist Dr. Patricia Wexler cautioned that too much Botox over too long a period of time can result in flatter, weaker muscles. This could lead to skin that appears to be thinner, aged and eventually even more wrinkles. Even though there’s a lack of consensus about how detrimental it is for your skin, the term “preventative” is a bit misleading because it is far from a one-time procedure. In order to maintain that youthful look, you will have to frequently go back to get more Botox. On top of that, preventative Botox is a bit more nuanced than regular procedures and it takes more careful research to find a dermatologist that understands your needs.
Despite its ubiquitous popularity, Botox, like any medical treatment, has its own set of side effects to be concerned about. These include pain, drooling, headaches and dry eyes. So, is preventative Botox a good option?
Obviously there're a lot of things to think about if you're considering undergoing Botox treatment. It may bring quick results, but for how long will they stay? Are there any potential long-term side effects you're not considering? How much is it going to cost?
If Botox doesn't sound like a viable option for you, there are plenty of alternatives out there that we'd be remiss not to mention. Hers’ anti-aging cream contains tretinoin—a retinoid medication that helps speed up rejuvenation by boosting the rate of the turnover dead skin cells. It can also increase your collagen and give you a more youthful appearance by smoothing out your skin and reducing wrinkles. Unlike Botox, this anti-aging cream doesn’t require injections and has minimal side-effects. You just apply a bit of the cream on your face as directed by a doctor and then see what works for you. On top of that, it can be delivered to your door.
Preventative Botox might be trendy. And in the following years, it could gain even more popularity as clinics become quicker, sleeker and more alluring. But if the thought of injections seems like too much, you have alternatives/
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