“Preventive” Botox: do injections work to reduce wrinkles?
There are no large-scale clinical or observational studies of preventative Botox. A 2006 study watched identical twins, just two people, over 13 years old. One received regular Botox injections. The other no. The researchers found the lines were ‘not evident in the regularly treated twin’ where she received injections, but appeared in her sister. The untreated areas of both of their faces showed “comparable aging”. In a trace, when the twins were 44 years old, the twin who received treatments had no static lines at rest; his sister did.
A 2011 study examined whether the effects of repeated injections reduce or eliminate long-term forehead wrinkles. Every four months, a group of 45 women, between the ages of 30 and 50, received small amounts of botulinum toxin in their foreheads. Doctors evaluated them two years after starting treatment, after the last treatment had worn off, and found that the neurotoxin significantly reduced their wrinkles.
But several dermatologists have pointed out the negative effects of stopping treatment.
Dr. Loretta Ciraldo, the founder of Dr. Loretta skin care, which has been practicing dermatology for more than 40 years, talked about patients who had used Botox for decades and then took a break. When they returned to her office, she said, “That didn’t help at all. Once it wore off, it wore off.
What if you stop the treatment?
You will not reverse your progress if you stop treatment – you will simply regain your full mobility, slowly creating wrinkles.
The effect of pausing treatment is difficult to track, however, because few people stop injections once they have started. Even though botulinum toxin itself isn’t chemically addictive, many people get “addicted” to the way their faces look, said Dana Berkowitz, associate professor of sociology at Louisiana State University.
Dr. Berkowitz, author of “Botox Nation: Changing the Face of America“, interviewed dozens of people who have used Botox for his book. Only one — a man — had ever discontinued treatment, she said.
Your face without Botox “looks ugly to you,” Dr. Berkowitz said, adding, “That wrinkle-free, ageless face becomes totally normalized. We expect it and then we consider it beautiful.