More 20-somethings Using Botox in Attempt to Prevent Wrinkles

 In Aging, Botox, Wrinkle Treatments

Can using Botox prevent wrinkles? There is no definitive evidence that it’s effective for this purpose, experts say, but despite this, over the last few years there has been an increase in the number of 20-something patients who are getting Botox, Dysport and other injectables to try and ward off future wrinkles.

Statistics from the American Society for Plastic Surgeons show that in 2010 almost 78,500 people in their 20’s received Botox in the United States, an 11 percent increase from 2009.

However, some doctors don’t think it makes sense. One plastic surgeon, Arthur Perry, said the concept of trying to prevent future wrinkles is “nutty.”

“You don’t want to use a drug unless you need the drug, and Botox is a drug,” he said, adding that even if Botox was proven to prevent future wrinkles, it should not be used for that purpose. “It makes no sense whatsoever to do that,” he said.

Brian Glatt, a plastic surgeon, finds that regular use of Botox seems to make the muscle-relaxing effect last longer so patients don’t need to come in as often for treatments. This may occur because the muscle undergoes atrophy, or wasting, after prolonged periods of not being used, Glatt said, which could mean that wrinkles wouldn’t form as easily on a young person who has had treatments for years.

Also, if Botox is used regularly, the wrinkles that return when it wears off may not be as severe, said Glatt.

Plastic surgeon Steven Pearlman goes by what you could call the “rest test.” He said to wait until lines show up before getting Botox. The wrinkles must be there when your face is at rest, not contorted through smiling or grimacing, he said. “Unless someone has lines at rest, they’re not a candidate for Botox.”

So how can you prevent wrinkles? Two of the best ways are to wear sunscreen and avoid smoking, according to the experts. Learn more about how to care for your skin.

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