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The world, meaning the blogosphere, Twiitersphere, and every and any media platform available to mankind has been a buzz with the benefits of Botox in recent years? From celebrities who are famous simply for being famous — or doing certain things on camera — to fashionable suburban soccer moms trying to out-young each other, to the 20-somethings hoping to stave off the inevitable, there’s much ado when it comes to Botox.

But what is Botox?

Believe it or not, it’s actually a poison. So why would anyone inject that ish directly into their face? Well, because that’s what botulism — the bacteria that makes Botox so gosh darn effective — does, it causes paralysis of muscle tissue. A little poke here, a little jab there, and voila, no more wrinkles! Botox works by temporarily paralyzing the pesky muscles that can cause wrinkles over time.

Unlike the actually condition from which the name Botox was inspired, Botox doesn’t cause widespread paralysis or infection. Rather, it is administered in a very calculated and controlled way with surgical precision. It provides all the benefits of temporary paralysis — like baby smooth skin — without all the side effects.

Or so a lot of people think.

Aside from minor pain, swelling, redness at the injection site and maybe even an allergic reaction or two in certain patients, Botox has been praised as the miracle drug that has little to no physical side effects. Physical side effects. But how do popular anti-aging treatments such as the best chemical peels, Juvederm, and microdermabrasion (the list goes on) effect you emotionally, mentally, or even spiritually?

So what is Botox?

Botox is just one part of several anti-aging and body enhancing treatments that are part of a larger problem: body dysmorphic disorder. Also commonly referred to simply as BDD, body dysmorphic disorder is characterized as a mental illness in which that patient obsesses over a perceived flaw in their appearance. Many people, including mental health experts and professionals, believe the popularity of social media combined with the spoon-fed images of perfectly enhanced celebrity bodies has created the perfect platform for an increase in cases of BDD.

This isn’t to say that anyone or everyone who uses Botox — even men — will develop BDD, but buyer beware. It’s important to ask oneself, “When will enough be enough?”. Tough question, huh?

In a world where Kylie Jenner is praised on a pedestal of plastic for having lip fillers while women of color with naturally full lips are criticized, it’s difficult to predict what’s in store for the future of cosmetic enhancements.

Luckily, along with the rise of surgical enhancements, going back to basics and embracing one’s body as it is — perceived flaws and all — has become a powerful and growing movement. Hashtags such as #iwokeuplikethis can be seen all over social media, followed by selfies of men and women accepting and even flaunting aspects of their body that were once viewed a negative light, wrinkles included.

So really, what is Botox?

While it’s hard to say for sure, it’s safe to say what Botox isn’t, and that’s the fountain of youth. If there’s one certainty in life besides taxes, it’s aging, wrinkles, and of course, death.