For many people who look in the mirror and don’t like what they see, cosmetic procedures are becoming a more popular option. For the face, there are both surgical procedures (for example face lifts or eyelid surgery) and non-surgical procedures (such as Botox and cosmetic fillers).
There are many different cosmetic surgeries for the face. Face lift or rhytidectomy is one of the most common facial cosmetic surgical procedures. If you are thinking about a face lift, you will need to consider many things, such as how old you are, what kind of shape you are in physically, what kind of bone structure you have, and skin issues such as coloring and texture. You also need to be realistic. Make sure you choose a qualified plastic surgeon with years of experience in facelifts, and prepare to pay – this isn’t covered by typical insurance. Also remember it won’t stop the clock on aging – you still have to take care of your skin afterwards.
While a facelift works on the lower part of the face, a cosmetic surgical procedure called a brow lift or forehead life works on the upper part. A brow lift is sometimes done with a facelift, though it can be done alone too. This can correct forehead furrows, frown lines, and sagging eyebrows.
Then there is eyelid surgery or blepharoplasty. This facial cosmetic surgery can correct droopy eyelids, and can also be done along with a facelift brow lift, or other procedures such as Botox or laser resurfacing. In an eyelift, excess skin, fat, and muscle are removed.
For any facial plastic surgery, choose a good doctor. There are board certified plastic surgeons, affiliated with the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS). ASPS says its surgeons must be trained and experienced in a variety of plastic surgery procedures, including face lifts and reconstruction. Also talk to the surgeon about risks and side effects. Potential risks include scarring, infection and anesthesia concerns. Make sure your surgery will be done in an accredited medical facility. Ask for before and after photos of patients who have had similar facial procedures. Don’t be swayed by cheap price or specials, but remember you will have to pay for this yourself – it’s usually not covered by insurance.
If you don’t want to go under the knife, there are cosmetic fillers. Injectable cosmetic wrinkle fillers are designed to help fill in facial wrinkles, giving your skin a smoother appearance. Most are eventually absorbed by the body, so they don’t last forever. Injectable cosmetic wrinkle fillers are made of different types of materials. For example, hyaluronic acid gel (restylane, juvederm, perlane) is a protective, lubricating gel known to bind to water that is produced naturally by the body. Collagen fillers are made of highly purified cow (bovine) or human collagen, a natural protein that supports the skin. There are also calcium hydroxylapatite and Poly-L-lactic acid (PLL, sculptra). These are the temporary fillers. Polymethylmethacrylate beads (PMMA microspheres, artefill) is considered a permanent filler, with tiny round, smooth plastic particles. These microspheres are not absorbed by the body.
Fillers can correct soft tissue contour defects, including wrinkles and folds. You may need more than one injection to get the wrinkle smoothing effect you want. It all depends on the health of your skin and type of filler used. The smoothing effect lasts for about six months and sometimes longer.
There are possible side effects, including infection, bruising and swelling. You might also have pain or itching at the site of the injection. An allergic reaction is also a risk. Plus, sometimes, the material results in bumps under the skin. Many of these side effects usually go away within seven days. Non-absorbable fillers may cause long-term side effects.
If you want cosmetic fillers, talk a doctor who is a specialist in dermatology and/or cosmetic plastic surgery. Ask about side effects. Be realistic – fillers will help, but they won’t restore your face to the way it was when you were twenty. Also, keep in mind that cosmetic fillers, like any cosmetic surgery, are probably not covered by insurance.