Dermal fillers are injectable soft tissue fillers that help diminish wrinkles and volumize facial tissues. Dermal fillers are widely used injectable treatments that make cosmetic improvements to the face for a better and young-looking face. Various brands offer dermal fillers with more or less the same results — restoring lost volume. As we age, our facial tissues lose subcutaneous fat resulting in loose skin, more prominent smile lines, and crow's feet. Other factors that contribute to the wrinkling of the skin include genes, sun exposure, and lifestyle. Plastic surgeons and cosmetologists use Hyaluronic Acid (a naturally occurring substance in our bodies) dermal fillers, which makes absorption into the skin easier.
What are Dermal Fillers?
Dermal fillers are soft tissue fillers made of Hyaluronic acid. Hyaluronic acid is a naturally occurring substance in human bodies. The production of hyaluronic acid declines with age and lifestyle, resulting in wrinkles, smile lines, crow's feet, and loss of volume.
People get dermal fillers to improve their facial features or gain a youthful appearance. The procedure is half an hour long, and recovery time is minimal. Results are immediate, lasting for a maximum of one and a half years, based on the type of filler and the site where they are administered.
There are several kinds of dermal fillers. Upon consultation, your health practitioner will discuss your options with you. One of the many reasons people do dermal fillers is that these fillers can be dissolved using special injectable liquid in case of adverse effects or undesired outcomes. Other potential reasons why people choose dermal fillers are:
Add volume to sagging skin
Enhance shallow contours
Soften facial wrinkles and creases
Relatively painless with immediate results
Diminishing acne scars
Defining facial features by sculpting jawline
Dermal fillers are a much sought-after procedure for those having early signs of aging or having lost skin laxity due to health issues, sun exposure, or lifestyle.
The dermal fillers procedure involves the following steps:
Facial assessment and mapping
Board-certified plastic surgeons or specially-trained nurses always do a thorough facial assessment before injecting the fillers. They evaluate your facial features and skin tone and examine the areas of your face that need to be redefined or augmented.
Your doctor marks strategic points on your face to specify the injection site. Before and after photos are also taken as a part of the facial assessment.
Cleansing and anesthesia
The injection site is first cleaned with an antibacterial wash. Then a topical numbing cream or anesthetic ointment is applied to the injection site to ease the discomfort caused by the injections. Painlessness makes the recurrent injections tolerable.
After cleaning, the process of injecting, massaging, and assessing the results is carried out. Depending on how many areas are treated, the entire procedure takes a minimum of 15 to a maximum of 60 minutes.
Once the injections produce satisfactory results, strategic markings are cleaned, and ice packs are rubbed to the target area to relieve the stinging sensation followed by the injections. (Usually, when the numbing subsides, there is an itchy feeling inside the injection site.)
Types of Dermal Fillers
Which Dermal Fillers are Right for You?
No cosmetic product has contributed to the cosmetic world more than dermal fillers. These minimally invasive products address multiple concerns related to facial aging and offer innumerable benefits ranging from lips to fine lines and facial creases.
A consequence of the increasing demand for dermal fillers is a need for more knowledge about the products. An expansive variety of filler types and brands gets patients caught in a confused state of mind. They need help deciding which filler is the best and what facial concern a specific filler addresses. It is not just a cosmetic treatment but a medical procedure that, in some cases, might have potentially adverse effects. Therefore, knowing which product is safe and fulfills individualized needs is mandatory.
This article provides insight into fillers' types and what they can do. However, a brief consultation with your board-certified cosmetic surgeon before choosing any filler is a sagacious approach to achieving your desired aesthetic goals.
Several dermal fillers are specific to treating one facial problem, likewise, one single filler can address more than one issue. Whatever the product, the biggest advantage of all dermal fillers is that they are biosynthetic in nature, meaning they contain no animal product and are never tested on animals.
Commercial name: Radiesse
Calcium hydroxylapatite is a mineral-like compound and is found intrinsically in human bones.
Loved by many dermatologists and patients for their natural-looking results, calcium hydroxylapatite fillers (commercially called Radiesse) are used to:
Treat moderate creases and nasolabial folds, marionette, and frown lines.
Volumize cheeks and enhance facial features.
Define jawline and contours.
Restore lost facial volume due to certain medications.
These dermal fillers are produced biosynthetically, meaning neither animal products are used in manufacture nor are tested on animals. It lowers the risk of allergic reactions and gives the most natural-looking results. With fewer side effects, it has a proven safety record.
Commercial names: Juvederm, Restylane, Esthélis, Elevess, Hylaform, Perlane, and Captique (to name just a few).
Hyaluronic acid fillers are the most widely used category of fillers. Hyaluronic acid is a naturally occurring substance found in our bodies in soft tissues, around the eyes, in the cartilage, and in joint fluids. It is extracted and reformulated. Common areas addressed by hyaluronic acid fillers are:
Jowls(sagging skin between chin and jawline)
Aching joints (to ease pain and provide extra cushioning)
Burns and wounds
Aquamid is a brand name for a semi-permanent dermal filler made of polyalkylimide. Its biocompatibility with the human body means that no allergy tests are necessary prior to its administration. Additionally, the fact that it is radio-transparent means that it does not interfere with X-rays. A very small amount of the product is enough to produce significant changes, and a single dose can inject large volumes. In about a month, a thin layer of collagen will form around the injection site. Furthermore, the filler is stable and can be removed if needed. It is especially effective for treating deep wrinkles and nasolabial folds, as well as for plumping up thin lips.
The brand name Sculptra is a Polylactic acid which is a synthetic dermal filler. It is a stimulator that triggers or accelerates collagen production in the body. It is non-toxic and biodegradable and has been used for more than 40 years as a suture material in surgery. Polylactic acid helps volumize laugh lines, expression lines, and deep nasolabial folds. It is remarkably effective in the lower section of the face. Since it is a stimulator, the patient needs several treatments before seeing results as the body responds and produces more collagen. However, unlike other fillers, it doesn't deliver instant results. Polylactic acid fillers are considered semi-permanent, and most patients only need occasional touch-ups.
Polymethyl-methacrylate microspheres (PMMA)
The brand name Bellafill is used to refer to microspheres of polymethyl-methacrylate (PMMA) which are utilized as semi-permanent fillers to take care of medium to deep wrinkles, scars connected to facial tissues, nasolabial folds, and furrow lines. These are also employed to augment and contour thin lips. This method is a more enduring solution than hyaluronic acid fillers or collagen replacement therapies. As PMMA has been in use for a number of years in permanent medical implants, the doctor is likely to start with a lesser quantity of fillers initially and can add more later if needed.
The one big downside of this technique is that a few injections are needed to plump up the targeted area, and a waiting period of up to three months is necessary to see the full results. It may also be seen under the skin. To dodge undesirable effects, it is important for the plastic surgeon to be experienced in the proper injection technique, which involves injecting at the dermal, and subcutaneous junction using threading or tunneling methods.