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What Are Dermal Filler Injections?
Many visible signs of ageing can be linked to volume loss. As facial tissues thin out, lines become imprinted around the nose and mouth and cheeks can look hollow and less defined. Dermal fillers can replace lost volume to help rebalance the face, smooth wrinkles, plump the lips, and restore a more youthful appearance. Dermal fillers can also be used to treat eye bags and tired eyes, jowls, thin lips, weak chin, sunken cheeks, weak jaw (men) and acne scars.
Dermal fillers are gel-like substances that are injected beneath the skin and they come in different formulations. At London Real Skin we use hyaluronic acid facial fillers which are smooth and long lasting. Hyaluronic acid is a naturally occurring sugar produced within our body that absorbs moisture and keeps skin well hydrated.
What are the benefits of dermal filler injections?
As we age, skin loses its natural elasticity, causing wrinkles and fine lines to develop. This, along with exposure to sun and free radicals can cause the skin to lose its youthful flow. Areas that are most commonly affected include around the lips, jaw, eyes, and forehead. The passing of time also results in a loss of skin’s natural collagen, which can cause cheeks to lose volume and begin to sag.
At London Real Skin, we use global dermal filler brands which are FDA approved with good clinical data supporting their use. Juvederm, Restylane and Belotero are all hyaluronic acid based dermal fillers which means that they can be dissolved if required. All dermal filler treatments are administered by qualified practitioners who are trained in facial anatomy and understand good skin health. The results are noticeable and yet appear natural.
The effects of the filler last from 6 months to 2 years depending on the type and concentration of the filler used. There is now evidence that filling wrinkles causes stretching of the skin back to its previous structure and can induce some repair of the tissue.
What to expect during your treatment?
Dermal filler injections are non-surgical and typically completed during a clinic visit. Prior to treatment your practitioner will have an in-depth consultation with you to discuss your treatment goals and advise on the risks and expected benefits from the treatment.
During this appointment, your practitioner will determine what it is you’d like to achieve through the use of dermal filler injections, whether it’s restoration of lost volume and definition, a reduction in wrinkles, or a combination of both. They will also review your medical history.
While the risks associated with dermal fillers are minimal, you need to fully disclose your medical history prior to treatment, as certain allergies, skin and neurological conditions, or medications can jeopardize your safety or results. Anti-inflammatory medication (e.g., aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen) or blood thinners need to be stated before commencing, as these increase the chance of bruising.
How many syringes will I need?
The amount of product needed for your treatment will be determined by your practitioner and the area treated. Each syringe of Juvederm dermal filler generally contains 1ml or half a ml of product. Your practitioner will let you know before commencing treatment how much will be needed.
A younger patient with plumper skin may need less product than an older person with a lot of volume loss. Also, the nature of the treatment will determine the quantity. A simple cheek enhancement will require less than an 8 point lift (non-surgical facelift) procedure. While 1 syringe maybe enough to plump cheeks or lips, 3 or 4 syringes maybe needed for an 8 point lift or jaw enhancement procedure.
Frequently Asked Questions
The following aftercare is recommended to improve the treatment results and to minimise side-effects from the treatment:
- Avoid extreme facial expressions, alcohol consumption and applying make-up for up to 12 hours
- Avoid extreme sun exposure, UV light, freezing temperatures and saunas for 2 weeks after treatment
- Avoid additional treatments in the treated area for the next 7 days.
You will be able to go back to your normal activities straight after treatment, but your practitioner may ask you to take the day off from exercise or other strenuous activity. Alcohol consumption should be avoided before and on the day of the treatment. Makeup can be applied after 2 hours. This is all to allow the injection site to close and avoid infection. Ice may be applied to the injected area to reduce swelling and discomfort.
How long the effects of dermal fillers will last depends on the product injected, the area of treatment, and the client. Usually, the thicker the product is and the more deeply it is injected, the longer it will last. To maintain the results, you will need to repeat the treatment every 6 months to 2 years or as needed.
Hyaluronic acid fillers tend to be the most temporary option. These will typically last from 6 months to 2 years. Injections to the lips will wear out a little faster than those to the cheeks. Certain hyaluronic acid fillers, such as Juverderm VOLUMA, are formulated to last longer, but are usually limited to certain areas, such as the cheeks, chin and jaw.
Not to forget, hyaluronic acid injections are temporary and completely reversible. If for any reason, you are not completely satisfied with the results, your practitioner will advise you and can inject an antidote to dissolve the unwanted filler, restoring you to your natural appearance.
While filler injections, if done correctly, are very safe procedures, there is however a very small risk of complications related to them. Common side effects of dermal fillers include swelling, slight discomfort, bruising, lumpiness, or unevenness. However, if injected correctly you will see a very nice result with dermal fillers.
Dermal filler injections are not suitable for the following people:
- Clients on medications that reduce or inhibit hepatic metabolism
- (cimetidine, beta-blockers), steroids, aspirin or anticoagulant
- Pregnant or breast feeding patients
- Clients with allergies to hyaluronic acid, amide type local anaesthetics or lidocaine
- Clients suffering from auto-immune disease or disease affecting the immune system, acute rheumatic fever or recurrent sore throat, history of herpes simplex (cold sores) or other skin infections, untreated epilepsy, hypertrophic scarring, porphyria or cardiac conduction disorders?
- Clients who have had laser resurfacing or skin peel in the last 6 weeks
Clients are also advised that the presence of lidocaine within the dermal filler may produce a positive result in anti-doping tests.