The centuries long quest for the fountain of youth has only recently (past 15 years) led to the discovering that the sun, smoking and other factors can cause a loss of elasticity which leads to sagging. Another factor has been quick or significant weight loss which leaves an individual with sagging skin. One of the options open to individuals who don’t have significant damage and want to regain their youthful appearance is to use different products and procedures that result in skin tightening.
Physicians are able to offer their patients both surgical and non-surgical options to gain the results they desire. The non-surgical options are not nearly as invasive as the surgical options and are usually considered as a first line option.
Most of the devices used for non-surgical intervention send head deep inside the skin. This causes an immediate tightening of the skin and signals to the body the need for collagen production. The combination of new collagen and the temporary tightening will make the skin appear firmer and tighter. The recovery time for these procedures is virtually none.
One popular non-surgical technique is the use of injectible fillers which is a bit like inflating a ball under the pockets and bulges to smooth out the outer appearance. Dermatologist and cosmetic surgeons may also use fillers to restore volume to the cheeks in order to make jowls appear smaller.
Another non-surgical technique is the use of laser or radio frequency energy to tighten the skin. Infrared lighting, unipolar and biopolar radio frequency energy has all been used to help smooth the outer appearance of the face. The cosmetic industry has also produced other creams and lotions that reportedly help tighten the skin over the face giving it a more youthful appearance. While some of these processes last longer than others, none of them are permanent.
Patients that undergo procedures with their physician may require more than one treatment to get the results they desire. However, in one study 40-60% of patients reported noticeable improvement after only one treatment. The majority of patients will notice continued improvement over a 4-6 month period or it is possible for individuals to notice no improvement at all.
Laser treatments come under the category of non-ablative techniques. Research is currently under way to determine the best possible type of laser that will tighten the skin and remove fine lines and wrinkles. However, while this is a desirable method of treatment because of the small number of side effects they have not yet replaced proven resurfacing techniques or other standard surgical procedures.
Candidates for a laser treatment to tighten their skin are women and men of all skin types and skin tones who want the results without the surgery. Results for these procedures aren’t as long lasting as surgery but recovery time is significantly less also. The most successful candidates will also regenerate collagen that produces a more youthful appearance.
Surgical options include a panniculectomy which essentially removes excess skin in the area.
A procedure which goes one step further also firms the muscles beneath the skin. The common facelift with lift the jowls and clean up the neck line. The face lift procedure commonly removes excess skin and tightens the muscles underneath the skin.
Skin tightening procedures are common in the dermatologist office. The search for youth and a more youthful appearance may not be as vain as you might first consider. Knowing that elections are won, promotions are given and raises bestowed more generously on the young more people are attempting to improve their chances of economic and corporate survival.