Needling your way to a more youthful look: Dermal Fillers and Botox, Pittsburgh
When the crow’s feet creep in around your eyes, frown lines appear between the brows, and the lines around your mouth linger long after you’ve stopped laughing, a cosmetic procedure may be the answer. But before you opt for surgery such as a facelift you should be aware of a few minimally-invasive cosmetic procedures out there that help you turn back the clock — or at least stop the hands of time for a while.
The recent trend in facial surgery has seen a shift from surgical procedures to a more subtle approach, thus creating an explosion in the field of cosmetic injectables. While these wrinkle-smoothing injections will not replace the need for a surgical procedure, there are numerous applications of injectables to help create a more youthful appearance without going under the knife. But make no mistake – these are medical treatments, and being well informed and choosing a board certified physician are essential to your beauty and safety.
There are two categories of facial injectables: cosmetic fillers and wrinkle relaxers.
Cosmetic fillers such as Restylane® and newly FDA approved Juvéderm™ can be used for smoothing out a little wrinkle to evening out a deep furrow. They are best used for filling nasolabial folds and marionette lines. Fillers correct hollowness around the eyes, add fullness to thin lips, and can balance a disproportionate face. They can create stronger features such as prominent cheekbones or a more angled jawline. Wrinkle fillers also alleviate scar depressions and indentations.
Both Restylane® and Juvéderm™ are made up of hyaluronic acid. Hyaluronic acid is a natural substance that already exists in the human body. Local anesthesia or topical creams are used to numb the treatment area. Very thin needles gently inject the filler beneath the surface of your skin; the hyaluronic acid attracts and bonds with water molecules to provide volume and fullness. The effects generally last for about six months. Results are typically seen immediately, and you can return to your regular activities the next day. Risks from injections are very minimal. The most common side effects are bruising or swelling of the treatment area. The reactions diminish quickly and can be treated with ice packs or over the counter pain medication.
With the development of Botox®, Pittsburgh residents experience a revolution in cosmetic facial rejuvenation. Botox® is truly an innovation in wrinkle reduction treatments and has almost eliminated the need for more invasive procedures for both men and women.
By injecting small amounts of Botox® into the muscles beneath the skin, the nerve endings that cause those muscles to contract are temporarily paralyzed causing the muscle to relax while allowing the overlying skin to remain smooth and taut. Like fine fabric, the creases and wrinkles of your skin will diminish if allowed to lay flat for a continuous period of time. Botox® treats crows feet, laugh lines, frown lines, forehead creases, lines around the lips, nose wrinkles, neck cords and other creases known as “dynamic wrinkles.”
Botox® is a liquid form of botulinum toxin Type A, which is a purified protein derived from the bacteria Clostridium Botulinum. Botox® is very safe and has been the most popular minimally invasive cosmetic procedure nationwide for the last few years with over 3.8 million recipients in 2005.
Botox®, Pittsburgh, treatments are relatively painless and do not require anesthesia. No downtime is necessary and you can be ready to go just minutes after the final injection.
Injectables are a great way to improve the signs of aging and enhance your natural features. But bargain advertising is not a good reason to try injectables, nor should treatment be an impulsive decision. Most importantly, the only place you should consider having injectable treatments performed is in your doctor’s office.
When Botox® and dermal fillers have run their course, it may be time to take the next step. Non-surgical cosmetic procedures are useful in young to middle age people, but as we get older, these have less of a role. If you are looking for long-term results, or a dramatic change, cosmetic surgery is the answer. A facelift, for instance, can last up to 10 years and a nose job can last forever. In the meantime, minimally invasive procedures can be a subtle solution to fight the effects of time on your skin.
Dr. Brian Vassar Heil is a plastic surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons and American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery. He has offices located in Washington County at 455 Valleybrook Road, McMurrary, PA and in Allegheny and Butler Counties. He is also the medical director of Acqua Blu Medical Spa and Skin Care Center. He can be reached at 724-264-3608, or via e-mail,[email protected]. For more information about plastic surgery or Dr. Heil’s practice, visit www.PremierPlasticSurgeryPA.com or AcquaBluMedicalSpa.com