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Preventative Botox

WHAT’S THE HYPE?
These days there is a sharp rise in several young people indulging in the use of preventative Botox as soon as their 30th birthday. Rewind 20 years ago and it was actually women in their late 30s and early 40s, who were making use of preventative Botox. 
This trend is more common now, potentially because of the number of hours people spend on social media these days and them being more conscious of their looks whilst posting pictures on such platforms. According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the use of Botox has increased 28 percent since 2010 amongst females in their twenties.

HOW ARE WRINKLES FORMED?
Preventative Botox are injections that prevent wrinkles from appearing. Wrinkles first appear on the face when the skin naturally folds during facial expressions. This is a natural part of our aging process which results from thinner, drier, and less elastic skin. This process is affected by numerous factors such as being in the sun, smoking, hydration levels, and the environment. It is but natural to have wrinkles when you animate your face. The wrinkles start to form when you see these lines while your face is resting or in a neutral position. 
WHAT IS PREVENTATIVE BOTOX?
Preventative Botox is used to prevent wrinkles and fine lines from forming before their onset. When Botox is injected during the early stages of fine lines, it paralyses the muscles and thereby, stops them in their tracks. It is considered a pre-emptive solution to a problem.  Slowing this muscle early will prevent the deep lines from developing permanently. The amount of Botox needed at this stage is comparatively less than what is required to treat wrinkles after they have formed. Also, with time, the frequency and the amount of Botox required decreases. Years of use may result in you needing less Botox over time as the muscle weakens with age and thus would not need the same amount and frequency of Botox.

ARE THERE ANY RISKS OR DISADVANTAGES?
Like any other cosmetic treatments, Botox at any age is associated with mild complications such a pain, bruising, redness, and swelling which when compared to the result is worth the risk. Having said that, starting it too early before the lines or wrinkles appear, the muscle and skin can become atrophic (thin) and look prematurely aged. Hence it is also important to focus on the quality of skin with the right skincare regime, exfoliation, and use of regular sunblock.
Sometimes, these treatments can result in excessive freezing of the muscles which looks unattractive and carries a huge stigma associated with the treatment. This is why it is important to make sure you visit a well-trained injector or a doctor who can guide you correctly rather than a day spa or clinic. 
It is also important to know that once you stop using Botox, the wrinkles will begin to appear as the muscle will start to contract again but it will not age faster than usual. People fear stopping Botox use will make their skin drastically wrinkled. Therefore, it is important to know that when you stop using Botox, those muscles which were frozen because of Botox will again become active but will not become worse than if you were not to use it. On the contrary, the skin will not develop wrinkles overnight to make up for the lost time.

WHEN IS THE RIGHT TIME?
The ideal candidate is someone who has just begun to see fine lines. There isn’t a universal treatment that fits all, and hence it is important to book your consultation with the right doctor to get tailored advice as per your skin needs. I think like any other cosmetic treatment the choice to commit to Botox is completely an individual decision.
To put it in simple words, starting Botox at a younger age when there are fewer fine lines and wrinkles to work with, will result in needing less Botox than someone who hasn’t had preventative Botox and starts at an older age. If you start early enough and it’s done properly you are unlikely to need as much in the future.
At the moment there are no studies on this yet, so it is all just anecdotal at this point. To get the right consultation for your skin, it is essential to find a qualified doctor who has in-depth knowledge about skin and its physiology rather than opting for a cheaper alternative. Be kind to your skin!