With so much emphasis placed on maintaining youthful looks nowadays, many women and men resort to many ways to retain their youthfulness and iron out wrinkles for as long as they possibly can.

If one goes on the internet, there are numerous companies claiming youthfulness can be maintained by means of sticking to a special diet, consuming various supplements, facials, exercise, and of course, cosmetic surgery.

Cosmetic surgery is a booming segment, as it offers mainly non-invasive procedures compared to plastic surgery. One highly popular option sought by many people, especially those in the entertainment industry where looks play a crucial role, is the use of facial fillers, better known as dermal fillers.

What are dermal fillers?

Dermal fillers are either synthetic or naturally occurring chemicals which are directly injected into the areas of the face where wrinkles commonly appear, such as crease lines between the eyes, crows feet, smile lines, sagging cheeks and even lips.

Dermal fillers are used to erase smile lines, plump up cheeks and lips, smoothen crows feet and even smoothen out pitted skin caused by acne scars.

Depending on the quality of the dermal filler used and the individual, the results can last from a few months up to a few years. It should be noted that the majority of dermal fillers are absorbable, hence the temporary effect.

Types of dermal fillers

There are a variety of dermal fillers that flood the cosmetic market, and it is important for a person considering dermal fillers to have a general idea of what the filler are made up of, as it will be injected directly into the skin.

Here are some commonly used fillers available in the market:

Calcium hydroxylapatite (CaHA) dermal fillers

CaHA fillers are made up of microscopic particles of calcium added into a gel. The gel is thick, which makes it better to erase deep wrinkles.

Hyaluronic acid (HA)

This is a very popular type of dermal filler, as it is made up of a gel-like substance found naturally in the body. HA fillers are mainly used to plump up skin, smooth out wrinkles around the forehead, eyes and lips and also for adding volume to areas like the cheeks.

Results tend to last from 6 to 12 months, as the body reabsorbs the hyaluronic acid over time, making it necessary for repeat treatments to maintain the youthful appearance.

Newer and improved quality HA dermal fillers will typically last more than 12 months, but bear in mind they come at a much higher cost.

Polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA)

PMMA fillers consist of microspheres (tiny balls) and collagen. Its application is to plump up the skin, and results last up to 5 years.

However, PMMA fillers are not preferred by many doctors, as long-acting fillers have been linked to higher rates of medical complications such as skin infections and nodules.

Poly-L-lactic acid

This is a biodegradable acid that stimulates the skin’s own collagen production, which has a dual function, i.e., it reduces the appearance of wrinkles and gives firmness to the skin where fat has been lost. Results last a minimum of 2 years or longer.

Autologous fat injections (fat grafting)

Liposuction is used to remove fat, normally from the buttocks, which is then injected into the facial areas to plump them up.

This is a surgical procedure done under anaesthetic, with a recovery period of up to 2 weeks. Fat grafting in the majority of cases has long-lasting results.

Safety precautions when using dermal fillers

Whichever choice of dermal filler you consider using, do take the following safety precautions:

  • DO NOT buy DIY dermal fillers online and attempt to inject yourself.
  • Always consult a qualified and experienced dermatologist (skin specialist) or plastic surgeon on the type of dermal filler suitable for your skin, and whether it is FDA approved.
  • Enquire on the possible risks and side effects of dermal fillers, especially if you have a known allergy to any of the ingredients in the filler.
  • Ensure you inform the dermatologist / plastic surgeon on all medication or supplements you are taking, as certain fillers may react with the medication or supplements and cause a dangerous reaction such as your blood not being able to clot.
  • Enquire if the procedure is reversible. With the exception of HA fillers which can be reversed by injecting hyaluronidase to dissolve it, for most other fillers, you have to wait until the results wear off.
  • The dermatologist or plastic surgeon (not an assistant!) must be the one to perform the procedure.

In conclusion, FDA-approved dermal fillers applied by a qualified dermatologist or plastic surgeon are typically safe cosmetic procedures. However, a person should seek immediate medical attention if he or she experiences difficulty breathing, significant pain or visual problems after undergoing dermal filler injections.

We hope our readers find today’s article on dermal fillers informative, though the contents of this article should not be taken as medical advice. Readers are advised to consult a qualified dermatologist or plastic surgeon for proper information on dermal fillers according to individual condition.

 

By Aaron
19th September 2020 20:30

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