How Botox can help reduce the signs of aging

Botox Montreal

We all know the age-old tips for younger, more beautiful skin: drink enough water, eat healthy foods and take care in the sun. But did you know that Botox injections can also delay signs of aging, even before they appear? Wrinkles and fine lines are an inevitable part of life, but at CHIC Laser Centre, we understand that a youthful glow can keep you looking and feeling your best for years to come!

Read on to find out our suggestions on how to help your skin look supple and fresh, no matter your age!

Wrinkles and frown lines and crow’s feet, oh my!

Like most folks over the age of 25, you may have noticed some lines starting to appear around your mouth, eyes or forehead. While this is a natural part of getting older, many consider wrinkles and fine lines to be an undesirable part of the human experience. If you’re included in this group, you might be looking for some solutions to keep these imperfections at bay! 

But not all wrinkles are created equal: some are dynamic wrinkles that only show when you’re making certain facial expressions, such as smiling, laughing or frowning. Other wrinkles are considered static, which means that they’re visible when your face is at rest, for example, nasolabial folds (smile lines) and forehead wrinkles.

Are fine lines the same as wrinkles?

Additionally, there’s a difference between fine lines and deep wrinkles. Fine lines are shallow, and are more likely to be considered dynamic, as they rest close to the surface of the skin and are visible only when engaging certain facial muscles. As we age, these fine lines lose elasticity due to a number of environmental and genetic factors. Air quality, sun exposure, diet and genetics all play an important role in the appearance of a person’s skin. Naturally-occurring collagen and elastin deteriorate over time, allowing what may have started as a few fine lines to develop into deeper wrinkles. Though you may notice some fine lines or wrinkles developing, there’s no need to panic! Continue reading to learn about preventative measures and what to do about existing wrinkles. 

So what IS Botox?

Botox is made from a neurotoxin called botulinum toxin that's produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. When injected in small doses into specific muscles, Botox blocks the nerve signals that tell those muscles to contract. This temporarily relaxes the muscle, which smooths out the overlying skin and reduces wrinkles. 

Botox is a simple procedure that involves a certified health care professional or doctor injecting a series of “units” into the desired area. (Generally, somewhere between 10-30 units are injected into the forehead to treat forehead wrinkles.) Once the units are injected, results can be seen within three to five days. Botox is medically approved for anyone over the age of 18, but until your mid-to-late 20s, you’re unlikely to see many visible signs of aging.

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Can Botox really delay the signs of aging?

Botox has been called the "fountain of youth" by some, and it's not hard to see why. Botox is a popular injectable treatment that can temporarily smooth away wrinkles and fine lines, giving the face a more youthful appearance. But does Botox really have the power to delay the signs of aging?

There is some evidence to suggest that Botox can indeed help to slow down the aging process. In one study, Botox was found to improve the skin's elasticity and moisture levels, both of which are important for keeping the skin looking young and healthy. Furthermore, Botox has also been shown to stimulate collagen production, which is essential for maintaining the skin's elasticity and firmness. However, it's important to note that Botox is not a cure-all; it cannot completely stop the aging process. But for those looking to improve their appearance and slow down the signs of aging, Botox may be worth considering.

What's the ideal age to begin preventative Botox treatments?

The ideal age to begin preventative Botox treatments depends on a number of factors, including the individual's skin type, lifestyle, and desired results. For most people, the early to mid-twenties is the best time to start getting Botox treatments. This is because the skin is still relatively elastic at this age, so Botox can help to slow down the formation of wrinkles. Additionally, starting Botox treatments at an early age can help to prevent deeper wrinkles from forming later on. Talk to your doctor about whether preventative Botox treatments are right for you.

If I start young, will I have to continue Botox treatments forever?

Don't worry - Botox is not an "all-or-nothing" endeavour, and starting early does not mean that you must continue with treatments throughout your entire life. If you start getting Botox treatments in your 20s or 30s, it's likely that you'll want to get touch-ups every few months as time goes on. However, the good news is that each treatment will last longer than the last, since your muscles will slowly become accustomed to not contracting as much. And, of course, you can always take a break from Botox whenever you want - there's no commitment necessary! 

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Starting Botox in your 20s to early 30s

If you’re beginning Botox treatments relatively early in life, it’s very likely that your skin is still pumping out collagen at a high level, and your elastin production hasn’t slowed down; you may notice a few wrinkles in common spots, but they’re probably superficial, dynamic wrinkles. You’ll probably fall into the “preventative Botox” category. As previously mentioned, this can delay the onset of fine lines and wrinkles by getting your facial muscles more accustomed to relaxing. At this age, your practitioner should use a lighter dose of Botox, so make sure you’re consulting with a trusted professional. We’ve all heard the horror stories of “botched Botox” or seen photos of people with “frozen” faces–this can occur when too much Botox is injected on multiple occasions. The doctors and highly trained professionals at Chic Laser are a great resource if you’re considering these preventative treatments. 

Waiting ‘til your 30s-40s

Those who begin receiving Botox in their mid 30s to early 40s are among the average of the most common age to start treatments. Likely, you’ll have noticed wrinkles starting to form in a few different places. Maybe you’re looking at smile or laugh lines, or have started to notice some deeper forehead wrinkles taking root. Your wrinkles could be dynamic or static, but are most likely a combination of both. Beginning Botox treatments at this age can prevent the transition from dynamic to static, and smooth out the wrinkles that you may already see. 

50s and above

By this point, wrinkles are (presumably) a part of life, unless you’ve discovered the Fountain of Youth! Though your wrinkles certainly tell a story about how much you’ve laughed, cried, enjoyed and emoted throughout your younger years, many people prefer to let their age remain more mysterious than obvious. Collagen and elastin production have definitely slowed by age 50, so if you’re beginning Botox treatments now, one can assume that you’ve developed some fine lines and wrinkles, some potentially being static wrinkles as well. For women, estrogen levels are likely to drop during this phase of life, acting as another contributing factor for aging the appearance of skin. In this case, Botox treatments can help soften existing wrinkles and prevent them from becoming more deep-set over time. 

There’s no upper limit on age for Botox treatments, though if you’re 60 or over, treatments generally won’t have you looking 30 years younger overnight. However, they can help you look fresher and more rejuvenated in a more subtle way. 

Aside from Botox, what should I do to keep my skin looking young?

Okay, we get it: Botox is great! But what else can you do to improve the look and feel of your skin throughout your lifetime? There are plenty of natural ways to enhance the youthful appearance of skin and prevent wrinkles. And the best part? You’re probably already doing some of them! 

What are the best foods to eat for wrinkle-prevention? 

We all know the internal benefits of a healthy diet, but what you consume often shows up externally, as well! A diet rich in healthy fats (think omega 3, 6 and 9, as in nuts and fatty fish) and a variety of nutrients is key for glowing skin. For our vegan and vegetarian friends, the most highly packed sources of these fatty acids are avocados, walnuts and sunflower seeds. Additionally, a nutrient-diverse diet is extremely important for radiant skin. Vitamins A, C and E should be consumed intentionally, as well as selenium, zinc and protein. Fruits and veggies are essential sources of these vitamins, with some of the highest-ranking being sweet potatoes, broccoli, bell peppers, tomatoes, and even dark chocolate!

How much water should I drink to keep my skin looking healthy? 

Experts recommend drinking at least 6 glasses of water per day for skin maintenance. Water is more essential to skin health than you may know: not only does drinking water keep your skin looking fresh and soft, it can also balance your skin’s pH, prevent acne and spottiness, flush toxins, moisturize and increase elasticity! And what could be easier than simply drinking water? In fact, water can be consumed in juicy fruits and veggies (cucumbers are over 90% water!) and in antioxidant-rich drinks like green tea. 

Tips for protecting your skin from the sun 

Sun damage is one of the leading causes of premature aging. Dermatologists recommend using a facial sunscreen daily, even in the winter! Depending on your geographic region, sun exposure can be an even higher risk factor. In Montreal, we often think that because the winters are long (ok, more like eternal!) we are not at risk of sun damage. But this couldn’t be further from the truth! The sun’s UV rays are present any time of year, doctors urge us to take preventative action against sun damage and potentially cancer-causing sun exposure. A facial moisturizer with SPF30 or more should do the trick–it’s one simple addition to your skin care routine that can help extend the life of your youthful skin! 

What should I avoid to keep my skin looking its best?

Habits like smoking, drinking alcohol and eating certain types of foods should be kept to a minimum if you want the healthiest skin possible. Smoking can cause uneven skin tone, dryness and sagging skin. It is also a leading contributor to deep-set, static wrinkles around the mouth, as smokers are always puckering up to inhale. 

Drinking alcohol also has a hand in diminishing the youthful look of skin. Dryness, inflammation and uneven tone are all caused by this common vice. If you’re going for a night out with pals and know you’ll be consuming some booze, make sure to hydrate even more than usual! Try the rotation method: one alcoholic drink, followed by a glass of water, which can reduce puffiness, dryness and dehydration. Bonus: you’ll sleep better and wake up feeling fresher!

Finally, certain types of sugary or processed foods can contribute to early signs of aging. Greasy processed foods are known to cause acne and other skin issues, so the less you can eat of these options, the better. Sugary snacks can be swapped with healthier alternatives to enhance your skin’s natural glow.

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Final thoughts on considering Botox

Now that you’ve learned the ins and outs of this common wrinkle treatment, it’s up to you to decide if this is the right time for you to begin your Botox journey! The team at Chic Laser is here to answer your questions and help you determine your skin’s unique needs. You can schedule a Botox Consultation to meet with one of our doctors and learn about your possible treatment options. And of course, the most important factor is how YOU feel when looking in the mirror! 

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