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  • Amanda Tuckwell

Considering BOTOX®? What to expect from your treatment and how to do it right...


At Aluminate Skin Clinic, our goal is for our patients to look and feel their best! This typically begins with a getting to know you consultation and understanding what look you're after. Many of my clients tell me that they do not wish to 'f'alse', 'frozen' or 'overdone' and they still like to be able to express themselves. When I hear this it's like music to my ears. I love this kind of treatment. The sort that gives you a youthful, refreshed look without going too far. BOTOX® Injections can be used specifically to reduce lines and wrinkles typically on the forehead, between the eyebrows (known as glabella) and crow's feet. Many people don't realise that BOTOX® can also be used to lift and shape the neck and jawline as well as reduce the unsightly vertical lines of the neck referred to as platysma bands. Also, in specific doses they can reduce a gummy smile, lift the brow, lift or drop the tip of the nose, eliminate 'bunny' lines on the sides of the nose plus much more besides. As an advanced practitioner I am trained to deliver all of these safely and effectively to help improve your appearance and enhance your features.

How Does BOTOX® work?

BOTOX® is an FDA-approved drug made up of purified botulinum toxin that is injected into specific facial muscles which temporarily blocks local nerve impulses that trigger muscle contractions. AKA temporarily switches them off, and so they relax. This in turn reduces fine lines, wrinkles and prevents more lines from developing. This gives your skin a smooth and supple appearance. BOTOX® is quick to work usually in 3-5 days and lasts from 2-4 months with the average client getting 3 months. The injections are virtually painless, I know this as I injected myself. Yes, I know, how do I do that? everyone asks the same question. The answer, easy, it doesn't hurt and I LOVE the results so, the minimal discomfit felt is worth it. It also wears off gradually so you will have time to arrange you're next appointment and more importantly you won't wake up one morning 'wrinkled' again.

What are the Benefits of BOTOX®?

Aside from the obvious one of reduced lines and wrinkles, you'll experience a refreshed, youthful look you'll love. To quote a fairly famous advert 'its you but, on a really good day'. BOTOX® can also be used to reduce the pain that results from headaches, and the symptoms of clenching or grinding teeth and a painful joint disorder known as TMJ. Many patients rely on regular BOTOX® treatments to help them manage migraines and headache pain.

Why do we get wrinkles? Essentially, as we age we loose collagen the elastisity for the skin to 'spring' back so, constant muscle and skin contractions create creases which cause the lines we love so much to develop. While you can technically get Botox at any age it has only licensed for those aged 18 to 65.

Is BOTOX® Safe?

This is something I get asked a lot and its a very sensible question. "Botulism" was first discovered in 1817 by Dr Justinus Kerner in Germany and became know as the 'sausage poisoning'. This was because a number of people had ingested (eaten) sausages that contained Clostridium botulinum in deadly quantities. Some years later a Belgium professor was able to identify and isolate the pathogen responsible. it wasn't until 1973 that Dr Alan Scott used this research was able to purify the protein and understood that injected in tiny quantities into specific muscles could have very positive effects. It was first licensed and used in American to sucessfully treat Strabismus (squint). Because BOTOX® doesn't cause any permeant changes it is considered to be incredibley safe as well as highly effective.

So, how do you do it right at 20, 30, and 40+?. Different rules for different decades.

BOTOX® used to be reserved for the rich and famous, but now Botox®, hailed for its minimal invasiveness and dramatic results, is now the most common aesthetic procedure in the UK closely followed by dermal fillers.

“Now that the procedure is less controversial, we’re starting to see young women view it as a preventative measure instead of a means to treat skin that’s already showing signs of aging,” says Tsippora Shainhouse, M.D., a Beverly Hills-based dermatologist. If that’s the case, when should you get started, and what should you know before going under the needle?

HOW YOUR FACE CHANGES IN YOUR 20S, 30S, AND 40S

In your 20s: To prevent wrinkles, some docs may recommend using BOTOX® as early as your mid-to-late twenties to reduce facial muscle over-expression (Many women don't have wrinkles in this decade, and wearing SPF daily can help keep skin line-free.) If you’re considering using BOTOX® in the future, think of your twenties as a training period: It can actually help you train your facial muscles not to move as much to prevent future skin wrinkling. Just remember, BOTOX® will affect the way your facial muscles move in general. This means it might feel funny when you try to make a particular expression. Whilst I'm not a big advocate of using BOTOX® at such a young age I can see the benefits and I would assess everyone on an individual basis But, I would certainly suggest if this is something you're considering then using much smaller doses would be advisable.

In your 30s: This is the decade when you normally start noticing some fine lines developing between your brows and around your eye area. BOTOX® will soften and even erase many of the finer lines around this age, as long as you continue keeping up with it regularly as required. If you’re only getting the procedure to look wrinkle-free for a particular event such as your wedding, let's say—or simply as a feel-good booster every now and then, you can space it out to every six months to save yourself the cost of an appointment. Or, if you're looking for regular treatments you can discuss a payment plan.

In your 40s and beyond: At this age, your skin is thinning more rapidly, loosing collagen and elasticity. Mother nature is so cruel. This means wrinkles become deeper more obvious. If you’ve not used BOTOX® yet, your muscles have been contracting for a long time and you might have a few static lines. These are the ones still visible when you are expressionless. These lines are more likely to have become etched in your skin even when you’re not moving the muscles underneath—not just dynamic ones that form only when you move your facial muscles. There’s also some mid-face volume loss (aka sagging) at this age too. Following your BOTOX® treatment your skin may not become perfectly smooth because of these changes.. However, If you keep up a regular regime of treatment these static lines will soften over time. Dermal Fillers and/or microneedling can also help these deeper lines.

The bottom line: You don't need Botox. Wrinkles are a part of the natural aging process, after all. But if it's something that interests you, and you'd like to know more, come an have a chat and we can come up with a treatment plan that won't leave your face looking stiff as a board.

Love Amanda X


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