Summary: Want to prevent wrinkles? There are plenty of ways to get the job done. But what’s the best way? That might depend on the kind of wrinkle you’re trying to prevent. In recent years, Botox has become a popular way to prevent wrinkles for millennials. But will Botox really prevent wrinkles or is it better off just mitigating them? The answer may depend on who is asking the question.

Want to Prevent Wrinkles? There Might Be a New Way

There are all kinds of ways to prevent wrinkles. But which is the best method? Well, that’s going to be a complicated answer, in large part because not all wrinkles are created equally. Some wrinkles are caused by excess skin. Others might originate because of lifestyle choices (such as smoking tobacco). Still other wrinkles are caused by the way your muscles and skin interact.

So it’s difficult to articulate one specific and all encompassing way to prevent wrinkles. It’s just going to depend on the type of wrinkle you’re trying to prevent in the first place.

But there is one new way to prevent wrinkles that certainly deserves some attention, if only because it tends to be quite surprising: Botox. We’re used to thinking of Botox as an injection that mitigates wrinkles–that treats wrinkles once they appear. But there’s some research to suggest Botox’s uses might extend beyond that. You should talk to your cosmetic surgeon or medical spa professional before you use Botox for any purposes, of course. There are inherent risks to any medical procedure, Botox included.

What Does Botox Do for Wrinkles?

In order to understand why Botox might be a potent way to combat wrinkles, it’s useful to know just how Botox words. Classified as a neuromodulator, Botox works by blocking the messages that certain muscles receive from the brain. In other words, it temporarily paralyzes (on a very weak level) specific muscles (those muscles are specified by the injection site).

This gets rid of wrinkles because certain wrinkles are actually caused by muscles. Essentially, when you make a certain expression repeatedly, your muscle can become quite comfortable in a “flexed” position–and may even become flexed in that way. That’s where smile lines, frown lines, and concentration lines come from.

When the Botox is injected, those muscles are finally forced to relax. That relaxation, in turn, releases the skin and the wrinkle is mitigated. The results from Botox will typically last anywhere between 4-6 months, depending on the injection site and on the patient. There’s certainly some natural and individual variability at work.

How Does Botox Prevent Wrinkles

Millennials have been undergoing Botox injections with some regularity recently. News outlets started looking into it, and it turns out these millennials weren’t treating wrinkles (they were a bit too young for that), they were preventing wrinkles.

Now, this could just be good marketing. What better way to get younger patients interested in cosmetic surgery than to emphasize how these procedures can prevent wrinkles? But it turns out there’s actually something too this. Botox can indeed help prevent wrinkles. And it works on a very similar principle as the mitigation of wrinkles.

When injected with Botox, the targeted muscle is forced to relax. At this point, wrinkles haven’t yet formed, so there’s no visible change. But because the muscles spend so much time relaxed, they aren’t actively contributing to the formation of the smile lines or concentration lines. In effect, this helps prevent those wrinkles. Now, by how much those wrinkles are prevented is difficult to say. We don’t know whether those wrinkles are delayed by four months or four years–that’s something future research will have to determine.

More Than One Way to Prevent a Wrinkle

Of course, there’s also more than one way to prevent the formation of wrinkles. Botox isn’t going to be your only option. You could also try:

  • Quit smoking: There’s almost nothing that’s worse for your skin than cigarette smoke. The sooner you quit smoking, the sooner your skin will thank you (the rest of your body will thank you, too–smoking is quite bad for you).
  • Hydrate: Make sure you hydrate every day. Dry skin has a tendency to crack, and those cracks eventually turn into wrinkles. A little bit every day will go a long way.
  • Protection: The sun can be quite hard on your skin. Ensuring that you wear sunscreen or other forms of protection can help keep wrinkles at bay. This strategy can also help keep your skin looking healthy.

It’s entirely possible that Botox will not be the best means to prevent your wrinkle development. The only way to know for sure is to talk to a professional. That’s because everyone’s skin is going to be different–and that means everyone’s wrinkles are going to be different too.

About the Author: Nick Engebretson has been working as a marketer in cosmetic and plastic surgery for over twenty years. He’s always chatting with surgeons about the next big procedure just over the horizon.

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