Soft tissue or “dermal” fillers offer a non-surgical way to smooth facial wrinkles, plump the lips, and create more youthful contours. Offering excellent rejuvenating results with almost no downtime, fillers are sometimes call “liquid facelifts”. Soft tissue fillers are also far less costly than a facelift.
Temporary (absorbable) fillers come in a range of FDA-approved materials, including human fat, purified collagens and hyaluronic acids. After six months or more, these materials begin to absorb safely into the body, and you can book another treatment to maintain your smoother, youthful look.
Permanent fillers that do not absorb into the body over time have also been approved for cosmetic use.
If you aren’t ready for a surgical facelift yet, but you want to achieve a smoother, younger appearance, soft tissue fillers may be the right choice for you. The treatment can’t help with sagging, excess skin, but it can add volume to hollow areas, create more resiliency, and smooth out wrinkles.
With an injectable dermal fill treatment, you can expect to see the results almost immediately. Dermal fillers can be used to plump thin lips, smooth wrinkles around the lips and eyes, plump up hollows around the cheeks and eyes, and soften facial creases. Fillers can also be used to improve the appearance of recessed scars.
The results of one treatment will last for six months or more, after which you will need to repeat the process to maintain your more youthful look.
A dermal fill treatment is quick and virtually painless.
After discussing your desired results, the surgeon will mark the areas to be injected, sterilize them, and apply a topical anesthetic. The injections take no more than a few minutes to perform, with each injection taking only a few seconds. You may be offered an ice pack after the procedure to help with any temporary discomfort, and after that, you’re free to continue on with your day as usual.
If you wish to treat deep scars or lines, you may need to undergo multiple injections for best results. For example, treating nasolabial folds (the lines running from nose to mouth) or marionette lines (the lines running vertically down your cheeks) may require several injections. If your surgeon feels the injections need to be made deeper than usual, he or she may offer you a local anesthetic to ensure your comfort.
The recover process is very quick for dermal fill treatments. Immediately following the treatment, you will look and feel fine, and can resume regular activities. If you have opted for human fat as a filler, you may notice an “over-filled” appearance, but this will settle and subside in a few hours or, in rare cases, a few days.
Be careful not to press or rub the treated area for the first 24 hours, as this may shift the filler to other areas of the face.
Dermal fill treatments are very safe and have a very low risk of such complications as infection, bleeding, or bruising.
When performed by an unqualified person, dermal fillers can produce less-than-optimal results, and can even be dangerous. Although the treatment may be performed by someone other than the surgeon, make sure your treatment is closely supervised by a qualified surgeon, and that they have specific experience with dermal fillers.