Injectable cosmetic procedures such as dermal fillers and Botox are rapidly gaining popularity among women. They are quickly replacing more invasive facelift surgeries, which were previously among the only few options available in retaining a youthful appearance. Lip injections alone have risen 50% since 2000.With the new alternatives, women can look forward to almost immediate improvement, a much shorter recovery period, less surgical scarring, and far fewer side effects.
What is a Cosmetic Filler?
A cosmetic filler is a product that is injected into the skin, usually to smooth out furrows and ridges between wrinkles. Fillers eliminate the accordion-like ripples by plumping the tissue between them to create a smooth, even appearance. The concept is comparable to gently reintroducing air into a partially deflated balloon until it is just firm enough to hide any puckers, but not too full so as to cause protruding bulges or bumps. This is just one of the many precise calculations our doubly accredited specialists have the expertise to determine in order to ensure you receive the correct amount for your individual needs.
Although dermal fillers have been used since the 1970’s, most were comprised of animal-based collagen, which sometimes caused allergic reactions. More recently, synthetic fillers with modified, bacterially produced hyaluronic acid (HA) have been approved by the FDA, making the process much safer and with fewer sensitivity issues.
What is Hyaluronic Acid and Why is it Added to Fillers?
Hyaluronic acid (HA) is a gooey, gel-like molecule that your body produces naturally. It is found under the skin and in different connective tissues. Its job is to hydrate and lubricate the skin and joints so that everything inside you stays in place and moves fluidly the way a well-greased machine does.
As you age, your body slowly loses this moisturizer, causing joints to rub against each other and skin to shrivel, similar to the way dehydration turns a grape into a raisin, just not as quickly and dramatically. Hyaluronic acid molecules can hold almost 1000 times their weight in liquid. When a filler containing this substance is injected under the skin, it immediately plumps it up, restoring smoothness, volume, and a youthful appearance.
Do Filler Injections Hurt?
At Cherokee Women’s Health Specialists, our cosmetic experts use a product called Juvederm, which comes in multiple formulations depending on the area to be treated. It is one of the most evolved and safest FDA-approved fillers on the market containing the bacterial hyaluronic acid previously mentioned. Some of the Juvederm products also contain Lidocaine, which is an anesthetic. This additive usually makes the injections almost painless, but any minor discomfort can be alleviated by ice or a topical numbing cream.
Where are Juvederm Cosmetic Fillers Used?
Areas that usually require attention are as follow:
- Mouth: To inconspicuously smooth or soften the appearance of both shallow and deep bracket-shaped furrows that form on either side; To fill in the creases of ‘marionette’ and smoker’s lines
- Lips: To volumize thin looking lips and reduce the vertical lines that lose fullness with age, giving them a softer more hydrated look. To plump and augment narrow lips; to redefine contours of the lips
- Nose: To fill moderate or deep parentheses-shaped shaped lines that form beside each nostril
- Cheeks: To amplify firmness and fullness lost through age
- Eyes: To correct or smooth wrinkles, laugh lines, crow’s feet, and squint lines; to decrease lower lid shadowing
- Other facial areas: To fill or reduce acne or other scarring; to treat additional wrinkles; to correct certain facial deformities; to contour facial irregularities.
How Do I Know Which Injectable Filler is Right For Me?
Typically, our specialists use the following Juvederm injectable gel products manufactured by Allergan, having found them to be excellent for all filler requirements:
- Juvederm Voluma® XC- Used primarily for facial volume to reduce overall lines and wrinkles. Over time in the aging process, cheeks flatten and the skin begins to sag caused by a natural loss of volume in the cheeks. Juvederm Voluma XC is designed to add volume beneath the skins surface to lift and contour the cheek area.
- Juvederm Vollure™ XC – Used primarily to instantly soften moderate to severe facial lines and wrinkles to create a smoother appearance. Results last longer than previous products on the market.
- Juvederm ®XC – Instantly smooths moderate to severe parentheses lines and wrinkles around your nose and mouth.
- Juvederm ® Ultra XC – Instantly reduces lines and wrinkles in the nose and mouth area, and can be used to add fullness to the lips.
- Juvederm ® Ultra Plus XC – Adds volume to the face, filling in wrinkles and lines to give a smoother appearance. It is a thicker version of Juvederm Ultra, so it is used to provide more fill volume in areas of the face than Ultra. It can instantly fix the marionette lines (lines from the corner of the mouth that turn downward to the jawline).
- Juvederm Volbella® XC – Can be used to instantly add volume to the lips or to smooth vertical lines around the mouth.
Our surgeons have the proficiency and training to understand exactly which filler treatment and product will benefit you the most, depending on the area that needs improvement. They will always take into account the following factors when they explain your individual process to you:
- The price and your budget
- The duration of your desired results
- How long the procedure will take and exactly what it entails.
- Whether you can even use your own fat from another area for filler (fat grafting).
What is the Cost of a Filler Procedure?
Each treatment is different when it comes to injection location, amount of product used, complexity, and time spent. All possible expenses will be carefully outlined during the free consultation we offer you.
What are the Benefits of Fillers?
In many cases, genetic and heredity factors can prematurely hasten signs of aging. In others, the transformation happens naturally. Injectable dermal fillers can allow you to retain a facial appearance that remains unblemished by wrinkles indefinitely. Continued regular treatments slow down the formation of revealing age indicators, suppressing unpleasant daily reminders that the years are flying by more quickly than you might wish.
By concealing the undesirable traces of time passage, fillers can have additional positive and unexpected bonuses, not just aesthetically, but psychologically as well. Loving the reflection in your mirror can give you an added incentive to match that youthful face with improvements to other body parts, whether through diet, exercise, or other overlooked attention. The pleasing effect of fillers can also enhance your self-confidence exponentially, allowing you to feel more poised, comfortable and relaxed in social settings.
When Should I Start Considering Injectable Fillers?
Very subtle facial changes that reveal advancing age begin to occur sooner than most of us expect-or welcome! Faint signs may begin to show as early as 25, and many women begin treatments at that time, rather than waiting until midlife when lines and wrinkles are deeper, more evident, and possibly respond less effectively to intervention. No matter what age you choose to begin the process, though, injectable fillers can be used by women as old as 75 with no problem.
What are the Risks of Using Fillers?
Side effects of injectable dermal fillers are usually rare and minimal, especially if the application is administered by a knowledgeable and experienced professional. Most disappear almost immediately, while others can take from 2 to 4 weeks. The most common ones are:
- Itching and/or rash
- Slight pain
- Firmness, bumping or lumping beneath the surface of the site
Improper administration can cause more serious risks. This is why it is so important to make sure you are dealing with an accredited and reliable expert in the field of cosmetic surgery. With the recent popularity of these treatments, injections are being offered by inexperienced, unqualified individuals—many offering ‘special deals’ that could spell disaster for recipients receiving diluted serums or misdirected application into blood vessels. Incorrect targeting can result in:
- Vision problems
- Insufficient, exaggerated or asymmetrical correction.
Who is a Good Candidate for Fillers?
The best candidates are women who:
- Are between 25 and 75 years old (some Juvederm products are not recommended for women older or younger. At Cherokee Women’s Health Specialists, we are highly aware of these exceptions, and rigidly adhere to all the manufacturer’s warnings.)
- Are non-smokers
- Have an optimistic outlook and expect realistic modifications
- Are in good health
- Are steadfast in regard to proper skin care.
Who Should Not Receive Fillers?
Not everyone is a good candidate for dermal fillers. The following problems may inhibit successful results:
- Any serious allergies, especially to Juvederm or other filler ingredients
- Being pregnant or breastfeeding
- Being outside the age parameters recommended by Juvederm (and other manufacturers?)
- Any recent chemical peel or laser treatment, or current plans to have these procedures in the near future
- Any history of excessive pigmentation, keloid or scarring problems
- Any immune treatments or problems
- Any blood-thinning medication being used.
How Long Does a Filler Treatment Take and When Do I See Improvement?
A treatment session can range from 15 minutes to one hour. Results are immediate.
How Long Do Dermal Filler Enhancements Last?
Duration varies depending on the product used and the area treated, and can last from two months to a year.
Why Should I Trust Cherokee Women’s Health Specialists with my Dermal Filler Needs?
At Cherokee Women’s Health Specialists, every physician is, in fact, a specialist in his or her field of expertise. Two of our doctors – Dr. Litrel and Dr. Haley, are board-certified Urogynecologists who are doubly accredited in OB-GYN and Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery (FPMRS). FPMRS is an enviable certification that enables us to perform any and all women’s health, reconstructive and cosmetic procedures. We are familiar with a woman’s anatomy from head to toe and qualified to diagnose, treat and operate in regard to all your feminine needs. We excel at rejuvenation procedures. Additionally, Dr. Haley is thoroughly experienced and trained in injectables, having been certified since 2007.
You deserve the best possible facial cosmetic care, and we can provide that. Our specialists offer you complete honesty, transparency, and their undivided and concentrated attention throughout your appointments and procedures. We have stoically maintained our impeccable reputation by placing the health and safety of our patients above all else.
Your face is always the most visible part of you. Whenever possible, we strive to give you the satisfaction you seek, so that when you leave our facility it is with complete gratification, pride, and self-confidence in the results of the filler procedures we provide.
Call to schedule a free consultation with one of our double-board certified physicians at (770) 721-6060.
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“Dr. Litrel was a fantastic doctor. I had my first exam with him, although at first I was skeptical about a male doctor for my GYN. But after I met him I’m glad I kept an open mind, and I couldn’t have dreamed up a better doctor. He cares about you as a person and not just a patient. The front desk ladies and nurses were very friendly and it’s a great office, very clean and not intimidating. I highly recommend Cherokee Women’s Health.”