Botox gaining popularity for both cosmetic and medical benefits

RAPID CITY, S.D. — As the most common cosmetic procedure performed today, Botox has rapidly gained popularity throughout the U.S. and internationally. Many people associate the treatment with facial wrinkle reduction, but in fact, a growing body of evidence shows that Botox has a number of medicinal and cosmetic benefits that go far beyond just anti-aging.

Nichole Yost is a Family Nurse Practitioner who owns and operates a medical spa in downtown Rapid City. Her spa, Nic Yost, CNP, Fnp-Bc at Quintessence MedSpa, provides a wide range of treatments involving Botox — from addressing skin concerns to neck pain, migraines and beyond.

Yost says there are many myths surrounding Botox, such as that it’s toxic, painful or can paralyze the face. In reality, she says Botox has the ability to not only create aesthetic transformations, but also to reduce pain, promote wellness and ultimately improve quality of life.

“One of the things that I’ve learned with being in the practice and seeing multiple people everyday is when you do Botox for someone, they just expect aesthetic and cosmetic results,” said Yost. “But when you can correct or improve something that has bothered you for a couple of years, it’s very emotional for people. And if you can do something on top of that, like reduce headaches, it just does change your entire quality of life. When people feel better about themselves, even aesthetically, it reaches deeper than the skin.”

Nicole Yost preps patient during treatment session.

According to Yost, there are multiple brands of wrinkle reduction injections on the market, which go by different names such as Botox and Dysport — but all share the same common ingredient: botulinum toxin. While botulinum toxin is a neurotoxin derived from a type of bacteria found naturally in the environment, Yost says Botox is nothing to be intimidated by.

During a treatment, the agent is injected in extremely small concentrations that aren’t dangerous into specific areas of muscle. The substance then prevents chemical signaling between muscle cells and nerves, thereby temporarily reducing contractions. The effect of this is to preserve the skin above the muscle by preventing lines from developing and deepening. Over time, the wrinkles become less visible because the skin over the area stays smooth and relaxed.

Botox’s ability to relax muscles is part of the reason it’s effective at treating conditions such as neck pain, spasms and teeth clenching. There’s also growing evidence that in addition to reducing stiffness and tension from chronically contracted muscles, botulinum toxin actually acts directly as an analgesic by silencing pain signals.

For anyone considering trying Botox, Yost says it’s important to find an experienced provider with strong credentials to ensure the most optimal results.

She says her own advanced medical training and certifications are a large part of her business’s success. Specifically, she’s able to offer Botox services that go beyond the commonly seen reduction of wrinkles on the forehead and around the eyes and into the territory of pain relief, wellness and more advanced beauty treatments.

“I’m an advanced injector, and therefore trained to safely inject many off-label areas of the face, neck, and body,” said Yost. “Injectable wrinkle reducers can be injected for sweating (hyperhidrosis), migraine headaches, aesthetics, overactive bladder, neck pain, TMJ and teeth clenching, and was recently approved for upper and lower limb spasticity in children and adults.”

While research around Botox and its benefits continues to advance, one of the merits of the agent is that it has minimal side effects. Mainly, they include minor swelling and bruising around the injection site. Although they’re rare, allergic reactions can happen.

Patients typically see results beginning after two days, and the full effects after two weeks. As for cost, Yost offers her Botox injections at $12 per unit.

You can learn more about Nic Yost, CNP, Fnp-Bc at Quintessence MedSpa, along with a full list of the services Yost provides at

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