Every face is unique. How your face ages and the changes that occur is also unique. The variety of facial rejuvenation treatments available today provide different options to address those changes, to refresh and restore a radiant natural, look. Facial fillers and fat grafting are two options to consider for improving facial contours without drastically altering your appearance. Both treatments add volume to enhance facial features, fill hollowness, and smooth folds and wrinkles. Focusing on your areas of concern and aesthetic goals will help determine the best treatment option for you.
How Your Face Changes
When we are young, fat is evenly distributed throughout the face giving a full, youthful appearance. As we age, our facial structure changes due to the loss of fat, collagen, and bone. The structural changes can be seen in the loss of volume in our cheeks and temples, hollowness under the eyes, thinning lips and facial folds or wrinkles. Adding volume back to the face restores a youthful natural appearance.
Facial fillers are often the first step in facial rejuvenation. Fillers can enhance cheekbones, sharpen the jaw line, smooth lip lines, brighten under eye shadows, plump thinning lips and lift eyebrows. Facial fillers are made from hyaluronic acid, a natural substance found in your skin. Hyaluronic acid has the ability to hold large amounts of moisture giving skin a plump, hydrated appearance. Replenishing hyaluronic acid levels with facial fillers helps to lift, shape and refine the features of the face.
When expertly injected, facial fillers should look natural, enhancing your overall appearance. Working with a skilled injector is critical. You want to ensure that your goals and expectations are realistic and achievable. Start slowly to see the results. Facial fillers are not permanent. Depending on the type of filler, the results last from six months to over one year. Touch ups may be needed once or twice a year to maintain the results of a filler treatment.
Fat grafting is a minimally invasive surgical procedure that uses your own body fat to restore volume to the face. The procedure is performed in our office or in the operating room, depending on the areas treated. Fat grafting involves extracting fat from the abdomen, hips or thighs using a liposuction technique. The fat is processed in a centrifuge, separating fat cells and removing any impurities. The fat cells are injected into the designated treatment areas.
Because the fat comes from your body, there is little chance of an allergic reaction. More than one treatment may be needed to achieve your aesthetic goals, depending on the survival of the fat cells. In most patients, a small percentage of fat cells do not survive the transfer process. The remaining fat cells that transfer are permanent for long lasting improvement. While the aging process does continue, following a regimen with consistent treatments and at home skin care will help support the fat grafting results.