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Botox and the Millennial

Social media, selfies and reality TV celebrities are among the influences driving millennials to the cosmetic surgeon’s office for neurotoxin injections and more, according to 2015 stats released earlier this year by the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (AAFPRS).

But the experts we interviewed say treating younger patients with Botox (onabotulinumtoxinA, Allergan), Dysport (abobotulinumtoxinA, Ipsen) or Xeomin (incobotulinumtoxinA, Merz Aesthetics) isn’t necessarily the same as treating middle-aged and older patients.

Manolis G. Manolakakis, M.D., an oral/maxillofacial surgeon and fellowship trained facial cosmetic surgeon in Shrewsbury N.J., says he has noticed the upswing in demand for botulinum toxin treatments among patients 30 and younger. The surgeon says he has been treating younger patients with “subclinical” Botox, to give them a smooth — not frozen — look.

“By relaxing the resting state of the muscle, the skin will have smoother appearance,” he says. “Preventative Botox is something that has been sort of a controversy. My belief is that if done properly (conservatively) on younger patients, Botox can be utilized as an antiaging modality to prevent dynamic rhytids to turn into static rhytids, without creating a disuse atrophy.”

Washington, D.C.-based facial plastic surgeon Houtan Chaboki, M.D., says he commonly starts Botox for women and some men in their 20s.

“Generally, I will recommend starting with the basics: sun block/protection, hydration, gentle cleansing, no smoking, avoid excess salt. Next, some patients will start tretinoin topical ointment. Lastly, Botox for those who still want to maximize their appearance. Even young skin can benefit from Botox (or similar wrinkle relaxers such as Dysport),” he says.

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