When Should You Start Getting Botox?

Posted on May 17, 2021

woman getting botox

Of all the cosmetic treatments out there, Botox is one of the most well-known. As wrinkle-reducing cosmetic treatments are becoming more common, you might be wondering when you should start getting Botox?

Patients can start receiving Botox as early as 18 years old. However, most don’t start treatments until their 30s. Some individuals who hope to reduce those fine lines before they show elect to start “preventative Botox” as early as their 20s.

The real answer is that it depends on you! If you are considering starting Botox treatment, many factors affect when to begin, including your individual level of sun damage, muscle movements, and genetic predisposition to wrinkles. While your oral surgeon will review a treatment plan with you in person, here are some general guidelines. 

What is Botox?

Botox is a naturally produced neurotoxin that weakens the muscles. Although this sounds dangerous, it is perfectly safe when injected in small doses by a professional. Botox is typically used to reduce lines on the face such as forehead wrinkles, crow’s feet, or smile lines.

Botox is a popular choice for cosmetic treatments due to the ease of injection. As an outpatient procedure, Botox injections take no time at all and result in minimal pain and side effects. The treatment can be used outside of cosmetic purposes to prevent migraines, teeth grinding, and excessive sweating. Botox is a quick and effective treatment that can produce stunning results at any age.

Starting Botox in Your 20s

For younger patients, it’s most common to wait until their mid or late 20s once smile and frown lines appear when the face is relaxed. However, this is different for each person as genetics and expressiveness play a role in facial lines. Patients starting Botox at this age can use smaller doses than the standard treatment for preventative Botox.

Preventative Botox

More and more patients in their 20s choose preventative treatments to reduce the chance of wrinkles before they appear. This treatment relaxes the facial muscles, which in turn relaxes the skin over it and lessens folding. Injecting Botox earlier will prevent the lines from happening in the first place instead of fixing them after they’ve developed. Preventative treatment can also lessen the amount of Botox needed when a patient ages.

Although Botox treatments are reasonably inexpensive, the costs can add up if you choose to start treatment at a young age. Additionally, preventative Botox will reduce lines from facial movements but will not affect any from sun damage or an unhealthy lifestyle. It is important for you to take care of your skin and general health to prevent these types of wrinkles.

Starting Botox treatments too young can increase the risk of visible thinning of the skin and muscle weakness after many years of use. This can reduce facial volume which can have the opposite effect, causing patients to look older. Your cosmetic surgeon will work with you to prevent any facial thinning and keep the treatments looking natural.

Starting Botox in Your 30s

Most patients begin Botox treatments in their 30s to reduce facial muscle movement and the chances of premature wrinkling. This cosmetic procedure can be used to treat early wrinkles before they become deeper and more permanent, particularly around the brows and eyes. A stressful lifestyle, smoking, drinking, and sun exposure can cause these lines to form earlier.

Botox treatment at this age will stop muscles from habitually causing wrinkles and soften any existing lines. However, too much Botox around the eyes will cause the patient’s smile to look unnatural. It’s important to reduce wrinkles instead of freezing them unnaturally.

Starting Botox in Your 40s

As patients reach their 40s, it takes longer for skin cells to regenerate, which can cause more lines to appear on the face and neck. New lines also form because of other factors like alcohol, stress, or living at high altitudes. When patients notice that wrinkles appear due to natural aging, Botox treatment is a popular solution. 

In your 40s, Botox will have more of an impact on wrinkles than skincare routines or anti-aging serums. This simple treatment will help reduce lines around the eyes, forehead, and mouth. However, if a patient has never had Botox before, additional treatments might be needed to remove stubborn wrinkles thoroughly. This includes laser treatments, dermal fillers, or other cosmetic procedures.

Starting Botox in Your 50s and Beyond

When patients go through menopause, it becomes more difficult for the skin to retain moisture, leading to a greater chance of wrinkling. Natural aging also reduces elasticity in the skin. There is no maximum age for starting Botox, so anyone in their 50s and beyond can use this treatment to smooth out existing wrinkles subtly.

If you haven’t had any previous treatments done, Botox by itself cannot completely remove wrinkles. Overuse is noticeable around the eyes can cause the facial muscles to shrink, so the treatment should be used sparingly. As cheek volume begins to decline, dermal fillers can be used alongside Botox treatments to rejuvenate the face.

In Summary

Botox is an easy, cheap, and painless cosmetic solution to soften any fine lines or wrinkles on your face. Although most patients choose to begin treatment in their 30’s, Botox can be used at any age for great results. If you are considering starting Botox, be sure to check in with your plastic or oral surgeon first for the most natural results.

By Amir Marashi, MD, DDS

Amir Marashi, MD, DDS received his undergraduate training at Mercer University in Atlanta where he was elected to the Phi Kappa Phi honor society. He attended dental school at the University of Minnesota where he earned his Doctor of Dental Surgery degree with distinction.
Dr. Marashi completed his oral and maxillofacial surgery residency at Louisiana State University and the University of Rochester. He also attended medical school at Louisiana State University where he received his Doctor of Medicine degree Cum Laude, followed by a year of medical residency.
After residency, Dr. Marashi joined the faculty as an assistant professor in the department of surgery at Louisiana State University in Shreveport, training oral and maxillofacial surgery residents. Dr. Marashi is board certified by the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery.

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