What are fillers?
Soft tissue fillers are substances that can be placed under the skin to replace volume that has been lost over time due to aging and also to diminish fines lines caused by aging, sun exposure, and smoking. The goal is to attain attractive, natural results that make you look like the well-rested version of yourself not like someone else.
We want people to think you must have gotten a new haircut and just returned from a relaxing vacation not to think you “had something done.” There are an assortment of injectable fillers that can provide a variety of benefits, alone or in combination with other treatments such as Botox.
Some fillers that we work with in our office and you may recognize by name include:
- Restylane Lyft (formerly Perlane)
- Refyne & Defyne
- Juvederm XC
- Juvederm XC Plus
- Vollure XC
How do fillers work?
The youthful face has the shape of an upside down triangle where you are wider at the cheeks and more narrow around the chin. As you age, the triangle flips and you become more narrow in your mid face and wider in the lower face. Fillers can restore the face to a more youthful shape. They can be used to replace lost volume in the cheeks, fill in hollows under the eyes, and correct the sad expression that appears at the corners of the mouth with time. In addition, they work beautifully to erase or significantly soften etched in lines between the eyebrows and around the mouth. Fillers can also be used to restore volume in the hands, which after the face and neck, can give away your age. There are many different fillers available, and which ones are best for you is something we decide with you during your in-depth consultation depending on your needs and desires.
How shall I prepare for my treatment?
- Please do not visit the dentist or have a colonoscopy for 2 weeks before and after your filler treatment to minimize the risk of an infection.
- Attempt to schedule your filler treatment 2 weeks before any special social events or professional commitments to allow for possible bruising, swelling, and/or redness to subside.
- Avoid alcohol, aspirin, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications (i.e. ibuprofen, Advil, Aleve), gingko biloba, vitamin E supplements, St. John’s wort, flax oil, cod liver oil (fish oils), ginseng, and garlic pills for 1 week before and after treatment unless prescribed by your physician as medically necessary.
- Let us know if you are on any other blood thinners (i.e. Coumadin (warfarin), Plavix, Xarelto, Pradaxa) but do not stop these medications.
- Tell us if you have ever had a facial cold sore (herpes simplex virus). If you have and you are having filler treatment in or around the lips, we may prescribe an anti-viral medication.
- If you develop an infection, cold sore, or a rash prior to your appointment, please call the office to speak with a nurse. Treatment may need to be deferred until the inflammatory process is resolved.
- Consider taking Arnica, which may reduce the amount of bruising you develop after your treatment.
- Do not wear make-up to your filler appointment or be prepared to wash it off prior to treatment.
What is the procedure like?
We will first clean your skin thoroughly. Most of the fillers contain or are blended with an anesthetic so additional anesthesia is usually not necessary. Occasionally, we use a numbing cream to make the procedure more comfortable, especially when treating around the lips. We inject the filler(s) with a very small needle. There will be some minor discomfort during the injections, but it is tolerable.
What can I expect after my treatment?
After your treatment, the treated areas may feel numb for up to 1 hour from the anesthetic in the filler. You may experience swelling, redness, and tenderness, which typically lasts less than 1 week. You may develop bruising which can persist for up to 2 weeks.
We recommend you apply cold compress/ice packs for 10-20 minutes every hour while awake for 2 days to reduce the amount of swelling and bruising you may develop. It is okay to apply your normal creams and make-up 1 hour after treatment. Please do not visit the dentist or have a colonoscopy for 2 weeks after your filler treatment to minimize the risk of an infection. Please wait 2 weeks to have any facial treatments and if injections were near your eyes or upper cheeks, wait 2 weeks to wear swim goggles.
Results from the fillers last on average 6-12 months or longer at which time patients typically return to the office for additional treatments.