New legislation has been introduced to prevent under 18s having Botox and other cosmetic facial treatments in England.
Prior to the changes in legislation, under 18s could have treatments, such as Botox, without their age being checked. In a move to protect consumers and reduce the risk of side-effects and complications, under 18s will now not be able to undergo Botox or dermal filler treatment.
Previously, the industry has been largely unregulated and government figures suggest that around 40,000 Botox and filler procedures were carried out on under 18s in England in 2020. The ban does not cover other non-surgical cosmetic facial treatments, including thread lifting.
Despite widespread support for the new measures, some campaign groups claim that the legislation does not go far enough. Laura Brooks, 34, said that new laws should be brought in to protect all ages. Laura had lip filler treatment in December 2020 and suffered significant side-effects, which she is still managing now.
The procedure started to go wrong almost immediately and Laura recalls feeling incredibly anxious as she watched her practitioner panic. Her lips became very swollen, she could feel blood trickling down her chin and her lips turned black.
Her practitioner didn’t know what to do and it was only when Laura contacted a friend who was medically trained after the procedure that she understood what had happened. A vein had been damaged, causing significant inflammation and discolouration.
Nine months after having treatment, Laura is still dealing with the effects of the botched procedure and called for more to be done to protect people like her. She decided to have filler because lots of other people were having treatment and she found a discount online.
Unlike other cosmetic treatments, non-surgical facial treatments are unregulated and this means that people can offer the treatment without formal qualifications. Laura believes that all practitioners should be medically trained.
The new laws apply to England but there are reports that Wales and Scotland could follow suit in the months ahead.
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