Thanks to advances in medical technology, a wide range of skin wrinkle treatments that work to resolve various facial wrinkling issues now exists.
The gradual development of facial wrinkles, whether fine surface lines or deeper creases and folds, is the classic early sign of inevitable aging. Premature aging and wrinkling of the skin may also be accelerated by accumulated skin damage due to excessive exposure to the sun and other elements, overactive facial expression muscles, the frequent use of tobacco products, poor nutrition, or skin disorders.
Fine surface wrinkles that progress to deeper creases, deepening facial expression due to repeated skin folding, and deep folds which develop with one’s maturity are obvious changes which may combine to portray a less desirable appearance. Persistent facial lines, especially those involved in negative emotional expressions, may mistakenly portray to others the look of worry, anger, anxiety, disgust, or sadness despite one’s own positive internal feelings.
Regardless of the cause of facial creases or folds, safe and successful skin wrinkle treatments that work to reduce or eliminate these problems are now available with the help of a Facial Plastic Surgeon. Injecting or implanting substances which either temporarily weaken the muscles or act as skin volume fillers serve to soften or eradicate the appearance of wrinkles and produce a more youthful, rejuvenated appearance.
Treatments for facial wrinkles are usually performed in the office setting, which is convenient, private, and safe for persons who desire therapy. Your health, in conjunction with the appropriate therapy to achieve your goals, is given full consideration by your Facial Plastic Surgeon prior to the decision to undertake specific treatment.
Thankfully, due to their minimally-invasive methods of these treatments, very few individual health problems would limit the use of such therapies. At any rate, your concerns and any medical requirements for each facial wrinkle therapy will be part of the consultation with your surgeon.
As there are many different types of aging symptoms that affect facial skin, multiple skin wrinkle treatments have been developed to address them. Each treatment has its own strengths; as such, treatments may be combined to achieve a patient’s desired results. These treatments include Botox, injectable fillers such as Restylane; and Radiesse, and injectable implants.
Facial expression muscles that repeatedly crease the skin eventually lead to the development of prominent forehead creases, brow furrows, or eye lines a.k.a. crow’s feet. One extremely effective treatment for these issues is Botulinum toxin a.k.a. Botox, which works by reducing the function of the facial muscles specifically responsible for skin creasing.
Botox is a sterile, purified protein produced in the laboratory from the bacteria, Clostridium botulinum. When injected in small amounts into subdermal facial muscles, Botox binds to the nerve endings supplying the muscle and prevents nerve impulses from traveling to said muscle.
Botox weakens or paralyzes the muscle in the injection site for a typical period of several months. The resultant weakening or paralyzing effect on said facial muscle temporarily reduces or eliminates previous skin creasing while also preventing new skin creasing. Botox may take several days to produce its effect. The effect typically lasts 3 to 6 months in most individuals before full muscle movement returns. At that point, further treatment may be elected.
Botox is among the most popular crow’s feet and forehead wrinkle treatments. It is also one of the most effective under eye wrinkle treatments.
Injectable fillers are also effective wrinkle reduction treatments. Injectable collagen is an animal protein filler material formulated for safe use in nearly all areas of the face, including the lips and crow’s feet. Fine wrinkles are filled in by the material to reduce their visibility. Other prominent facial creases and folds around the forehead, cheeks, and chin can be treated as well with this material.
Initial collagen allergy testing must be performed, and repeated treatments every 2 to 3 months are typically needed to sustain the desired result. These skin wrinkle treatments are easily performed in the office and usually have minimal side effects.
Restylane is considered a premier wrinkle filler because it is a safe, temporary, non-animal form of hyaluronic acid gel—hyaluronic acid being a naturally occurring substance that binds water to cells. Restylane is injected to fill out creases and lines. It is not to be confused with Botox, which basically relaxes muscles. The most common areas to have done are lips, nasolabial folds, smile lines, and drooping corners of the mouth, making it one of the most sought-after mouth wrinkle treatments. The results typically last between 6 to 12 months.
Restylane has minimal side effects. The most common is slight bruising, which is seen in about 20% of patients. The injection hurts more than injectable collagen because injectable collagen contains an anesthetic. Some patients experience an infection or a cold sore due to the injection of the needle. The treatment may also promote allergic reactions, but such cases are extremely rare. Additionally, there may be a little swelling after the needle is injected, though this resolves within a day or two.
Another injectable tissue filler is Radiesse a.k.a. Radiance. This is a gel solution composed of calcium hydroxylapatite (CaHA) microspheres suspended in an aqueous, polysaccharide gel. CaHA is a well-known biocompatible substance found in teeth and bone, and which is absorbed by the body over a period of about 2 years.
Radiesse is now widely used for the cosmetic treatment of deep facial lines and folds, acne scarring, deep furrows between the brows, other areas of facial depressions, and issues affecting the size and shape of the lips. When injected beneath the skin, the CaHA microspheres are encapsulated or trapped by the body’s collagen fiber, gently lifting and supporting the skin. Radiesse does not require allergy or sensitization testing.
Human collagen matrix is an implant used for the reconstruction of soft tissue defects. To flatten and reduce wrinkle visibility, it may be threaded beneath the deep creases of the brow or cheek folds or placed within the upper and lower lips. Typically, this material maintains the majority of its volume correction similar to injectable collagen.
To any respectable dermatologist, wrinkle treatments Restylane and Botox work brilliantly together as a team. In fact, skin wrinkle treatments are often combined to produce a more comprehensive facial rejuvenation. For example, a doctor may choose Botox to smoothen the forehead, then use injectable filler wrinkle treatments around mouth.
The best way to determine which skin wrinkle treatments are most appropriate for you is to have a consultation with a good doctor.
Expectations of any facial wrinkle therapy must be realistic. While the idea of a complete and permanent removal of facial wrinkles may be attractive to a person considering treatment, it is unrealistic due to the ongoing nature of wrinkle formation and the currently available treatment methods.
The patterns and severity of facial wrinkle formation are highly individual. Therefore, after consultation with your surgeon, the appropriate therapy for your specific problems must be tailored to meet your needs. Management of many facial wrinkles may require repeated skin wrinkle treatments or the use of combinations of such treatments to achieve optimal results.
The goal is to improve or reduce the appearance of the wrinkle or crease. This can be accomplished by reducing skin folding caused by underlying facial muscle action, which is what occurs in botulinum toxin therapy. Alternatively, the skin beneath the wrinkle can be augmented using injected or inserted filler material. The choice of a type of therapy depends on the location and extent of the wrinkles, the desired duration of the effects, and the tolerance for potential side effects.
All skin wrinkle treatments provide additional and complimentary aesthetic benefits when combined with other facial rejuvenation procedures such as face lift, browlift, blepharoplasty, or skin resurfacing.
In comparison to typical cosmetic surgical procedures, the office time for skin wrinkle treatments and the subsequent recovery period until one returns to normal function are minimal. Botulinum toxin therapy typically takes a few minutes to perform, and most patients may return immediately to their home or work.
Minor local irritation, redness, bruising, or swelling at the injection sites are the most commonly observed side effects, all of which typically abate within a few hours. Likewise, collagen or human dermal injection therapy can be accomplished with a procedure lasting 5 to 15 minutes and which produces similar minor and temporary side effects. Some mild irritation at the injection sites is unavoidable but can easily be camouflaged with standard make-up, if necessary.
Insurance does not generally cover procedures that are purely for cosmetic reasons. Treatments aimed at correcting or improving facial scars or contour deformities resulting from injury may be covered. It is the patient’s responsibility to check with the insurance carrier for information on the degree of coverage.
Those living in Chicago or the surrounding areas will benefit from seeing double board-certified facial plastic surgeon Dr. Moynihan, who provides the best skin wrinkle treatments in Chicago. Please refer to our contact information for the exact locations of the facility and outpatient surgical center he performs the treatments at.
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