Patients, friends, and family commonly ask when I suggest that they start Botox. Since I am a Beverly Hills trained facial plastic surgeon, I know the answer is not as simple as one might think. Lets first examine the role of Botox.
Botox has been safely used in medicine for many years. One use of Botox is used to erase or prevent the formation of a specific type of wrinkles on the face. Repetitive muscle movement causes wrinkles on the face. The wrinkles on the face caused by repetitive muscle movement are:
1) The 11 Lines- The wrinkles between the eyebrows
2) Horizontal Forehead Lines
3) Crow’s Feet- The wrinkles around the eyes
When we are young, the skin has the ability to relax after facial muscle movement and the wrinkles that form will disappear during rest. As we become older, the skin loses this ability, and wrinkles will appear at rest.
Botox is directly injected into these muscles to weaken them. The weakened muscle is then unable to create the wrinkle. Therefore, Botox is used as a preventative measure to prevent the formation of these wrinkles.
People develop these wrinkles at different points in their lives. Some patients develop them in their early 20’s while others will not develop them until their late 30’s. People that are particularly expressive or have thick and sebaceous skin will tend to form these wrinkles earlier.
Now we can get to the question at hand: When should a patient begin to use Botox to prevent the formation of facial wrinkles? I tell patients that they should begin to use Botox to prevent the formation of facial wrinkles when they begin to see these wrinkles while they are rest. The youngest patients I have that use Botox in a preventative measure are in their early 20’s.
Botox is safe, quick, and effective. Each treatment lasts 3-5 months and the results are fullly reversible if the treatment is not repeated.
There are other indications when a patient may use Botox in their early 20’s. They are:
2) Treatment and prevention of migraines