Indianapolis sits in a prime location in the heart of the Midwest, which means each year is marked by distinct seasons. But while those seasons provide a great excuse to diversify your wardrobe, they also bring conditions that hasten signs of aging: the summer sun may break down elastin, whereas dry winter air can rob skin of crucial moisture. Such environmental stresses tend to accelerate smile lines, crow’s-feet, and other facial wrinkles. Luckily for residents of Indianapolis, Botox can help halt these harbingers of time. Read on for more about this unique beautifying agent, and for suggestions on where you can get a revitalizing treatment from the city’s best face and skin care specialists.How does Botox work?Botulism toxin A, known socially as Botox, combats facial wrinkles at their source: the underlying muscles whose contractions furrow the skin. The toxin works by disrupting a protein called SNAP-25, which is responsible for bridging the gap between nerve endings. Normally, the neurotransmitter acetylcholine tells muscles to contract by sending a signal from cell to cell, but with the gap between nerve endings disrupted, the message doesn’t arrive. The affected muscles remain capable of contracting, but since they don’t receive acetylcholine’s message, they simply relax for three to six months. Without the tug of muscle contractions, the above layers of skin also relax, gradually leading to a smoother, more youthful appearance. What kinds of lines and wrinkles does Botox treat?Botox is most effective on dynamic wrinkles. These are the fine, shallow lines that typically begin appearing in your 20s and 30s, usually developing around areas that are most active in facial expressions (around the eyes, for example, or between the eyebrows). Deeper wrinkles that form later in life are called static lines. Because they are caused by a loss of tissue versus muscle activity, static lines are better treated with dermal fillers such as Juvéderm rather than Botox. How is it administered?Nurses and doctors deliver Botox through a series of injections into facial muscles. Common target areas include the glabella (the area between the brows), crow's-feet, and forehead lines. Technically, Botox is an invasive treatment because it must penetrate the skin; fortunately, the injections are very shallow, and these professionals are experts at administering them. The staffers at some Indianapolis plastic-surgery clinics may also enhance their precision with tools such as an electromyography machine, which reveals areas of muscular activity. Is Botox safe?Yes. The bacteria that causes botulism, clostridium botulinum, is not part of the treatment, nor are six of the seven neurotoxins it secretes. The only substance used in Botox injections, botulinum toxin A, is carefully extracted, purified, and standardized into FDA-approved doses. The amount of the paralytic substance used amounts to only 1/175th of a fatal dose. In fact, the dosage is so small, it can’t get beyond the muscle tissue it’s injected into, meaning there’s little if any chance for Botox to reach the bloodstream. Moreover, botulinum toxin A has shown no threat of permanent nerve damage. Its effects wear off in three to four months, about the amount of time needed for nerve endings to regrow.Where can I get an appointment?Here area few of the clinics in Indianapolis where you can schedule a consultation for Botox: Winslow Plastic Surgery, 2000 E. 116th St. Suite 200, Carmel, IN (317) 814-1004 Zollman Plastic Surgery, 8227 Northwest Blvd. Suite 290, Indianapolis, IN (866) 277-3613 Dr. Janet Turkle, 11455 N. Meridian St. Suite 150, Carmel, IN (317) 848-0001 Gillian Institute, 8455 Clearvista Pl., Indianapolis, IN (317) 913-3260
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