One of the most challenging aspects of treating facial aging is the fact that every face ages differently. In fact, it is not at all uncommon for different areas of your to age at different rates. This is one of the reasons why I have always believed that a gradual, targeted approach that focuses on specific areas of concern is most effective. However, this means that there is no such thing as a “one-size-fits-all” treatment for the signs of facial aging and that a variety of techniques are required for each individual case. For example, although there are many well-known procedures designed to rejuvenate the brow and upper face, addressing the areas of the face between the cheek bones and the line of the jaw requires a different approach. Here are some of the most effective ways I address common signs of aging that affect the lower third of the face.
A youthful and healthy face tends to have a rounded, almost plump appearance. This is due, in part, to plentiful fat deposits underneath the skin. However, as we grow older, those fat deposits start to break down while the production of collagen and elastin, two proteins that contribute to the skin’s fullness and elasticity, gradually declines. This can lead to thin lips, sunken cheeks, sagging jowls, and a generally hollow or gaunt appearance. In the early stages, small amounts of lost facial volume can be restored with injectable facial fillers, like Juvéderm® or Restylane®. Made from hyaluronic acid, a substance that occurs naturally in healthy skin, facial fillers act as a kind of inflatable cushion, supporting tissues that may have lost volume or elasticity due to the normal aging process and holding on to moisture that keeps the skin looking young and vital. However, older patients and patients with thin or oblong faces that have less facial fat to begin with may benefit more from fat transfer techniques, which use small amounts of fat taken from the patient’s own body via liposuction to plump up areas in need of augmentation for a more natural appearance.
Surgical Procedures to Address Structural Problems
Even though minimally invasive facial rejuvenation procedures like facial fillers and fat transfer can do a great deal to hold the signs of facial aging at bay, there comes a point when their effectiveness begins to diminish and full cosmetic surgery is necessary to maintain your results. For many patients, a mini-facelift can be an extremely efficient way to address this aging in the lower face. Specifically designed to target the area from the top of the cheek bones to the jaw line, a mini-facelift can often achieve results similar to a traditional full facelift procedure with less visible scarring and a reduced recovery time. Furthermore, the appearance of loose, sagging skin in the lower half of the face can also possibly be addressed by subtly altering the underlying facial architecture itself. Genioplasty, or chin surgery, is an extremely effective facial contouring procedure designed to either reduce or augment the size and projection of the chin in order to correct facial defects and injuries, emphasize or deemphasize the size of the nose, or even give the face a more masculine or feminine appearance. By slightly increasing the projection of the chin, genioplasty can potentially give the neck and jaw line a smoother and more youthful appearance.
Every face requires a customized approach, so if you are interested in finding out exactly what specific facial plastic surgery procedures would be best for you please contact me, Dr. Fernando Burstein so that we can schedule a full consultation, which will include advanced computer imaging to show you simulated potential results. Don’t forget to connect with me on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ for the latest facial plastic surgery news.