Back in the early 2000s, when I first started using Botox for aesthetics in central Maine, Botox was considered an extravagance and only talked about in hushed tones with someone’s closest friends. It was also considered to be something reserved for Hollywood and the “Real Housewives” types across the country. Fast forward to 2016, and I would say that Botox has become a common and, in my office, an everyday occurrence.
In an amazing change, I am seeing more people in their 20s and 30s who are coming in to treat wrinkles that are just starting to appear, and in an effort to prevent wrinkles they feel are inevitable due to family facial heredity. In fact, in a recent survey by the American Academy of Facial Plastic Surgery, Botox injections for people under 30 increased 64% in 2015.
As you all may know, Botox is safe and effective FDA approved medication. When injected very precisely into certain muscles, Botox will temporarily block the nerve signal that causes muscle contraction.
As the skin ages, it unfortunately loses its elasticity. Collagen within a skin area starts to break down, forming wrinkles along with repeated muscle contractions.
After Botox is applied to the area, the muscles that receive the Botox are then in their most relaxed state for 3 months or more, and are therefore not persistently folding over the skin. As a result of the muscle relaxation, wrinkles soften and new lines are prevented from forming.
While most women or men do not develop wrinkles in their 20s unless they have done extreme tanning in their early life, there are some who do develop wrinkles in the mid-to-late 20s due to genetic or hereditary factors. I have had several women bring in pictures from family weddings or reunions that show several generations and ages of family members, all with the same pattern of facial wrinkles.
If someone in their 20s desires Botox injections for preventive reasons, I always counsel them concerning the effects of Botox on the muscles treated. I also recommend using small amounts of Botox so that only the facial muscles that might cause their familial wrinkle pattern are affected. By this method, they will still be able to make all of their other facial expressions appear natural.
By the time someone reaches their 30s, it is more common to develop lines between the eyes (scowl lines) and around the eyes (smile lines or “crow’s feet”). Squinting and smiling repeatedly makes these lines more likely.
Use of Botox in the aforementioned areas in particular will soften and eventually even eliminate the fine lines during one’s 30s as long as this therapy is maintained when the previous treatment wears off. I frequently treat first-timers in this age group with Botox, often because they are attending events such as class reunions or weddings.
The 40s is probably the most common decade for women in particular to start coming in for Botox. During this time of life, the skin becomes thinner due to further loss of collagen, making wrinkle development more obvious. In fact, many people feel as if their wrinkles and lines are etched in their skin, even when their muscles are not moving.
The bottom line is that Botox is now considered by many to be a necessary maintenance item. While many feel that wrinkles are part of the natural aging process, this medical development helps to prevent wrinkles from being an inevitable part of aging.
During my 13 years of Botox experience, I have seen vast improvements in the self-esteem and energy level of many people just from the decrease in their facial wrinkles. If you have any questions about whether you are a candidate for Botox, or you want another area of your body assessed for Botox, just call Emily or Denise at (207) 873-2158 to schedule a free confidential consultation.