What Happens to Your Face When You Age
Aging comes with many positives, including wisdom, accomplishments, experience and confidence, to name a few. But of course, it also takes its toll on the face and body. Since your face is the first part of you that people see, they are exposed to the telltale signs of aging immediately, as are you when you greet yourself in the mirror each day. In this blog post San Francisco’s Dr. Sheena Kong explores exactly what happens to your face when you age.
Loss of Midface Volume
As we get older, we first notice our laugh lines getting deeper and our facial skin getting droopier. In the past, these aging signs were corrected with Juvederm, a hyaluronic acid-based facial filler that is directly injected into laugh lines to make them smoother. The newer approach is different. We now recognize that the reason behind a tired and droopy face is from midface volume loss. When we are young, we have “baby fat;” as we grow older, the fat pads underneath the skin get thinner and even separate. This loss of volume leads to sunken cheeks and loose skin. Therefore, the proper way to address this is to replenish facial volume. This has been done traditionally with fat transfer. More recently, a highly cross-linked hyaluronic acid-based filler called Juvederm Voluma XC has come to the aesthetic market. Using Juvederm Voluma XC to replace lost facial volume is easy, safe, long-lasting (up to two years), and cheaper than fat transfer surgeries. This office-based treatment takes about 15 to 30 minutes to complete. Patients will see an instant lift around their cheeks. There is no restriction or downtime after the treatment.
Unfortunately, skin does get loose due to gravity, facial movement and lack of collagen production. Skin texture also deteriorates. Ultherapy and Thermage are two popular non-invasive treatments used to tighten the skin without surgery. Ultherapy uses ultrasound energy to heat skin layers, which prompts the body to produce new collagen and rebuild new skin cells. As a result, the skin becomes tighter and firmer, minimizing the appearance of wrinkles and other facial signs of aging. Ultherapy works best to treat loose skin around the face and neck. Thermage uses radiofrequency energy to tighten and lift problem areas around the body, including the area around the eyes, thighs, buttocks and arms. Both treatments do not require anesthesia or downtime. Dr. Kong will recommend the treatment that is most appropriate for you during a one-on-one consultation.
Pigmentation is another common sign of aging. Prolonged sun exposure, hormonal fluctuation, mechanical injury to skin and stress (lack of sleep or proper nutrition or exercise) all lead to formation of “age spots.” Dr. Kong feels skincare is very important to maintain the health of skin, therefore each patient who receives cosmetic treatments at her med spa will be educated about effective skincare to protect their skin. In addition, Fraxel laser treatment and Clear + Brilliant are great laser resurfacing treatments to remove darker spots. Both treatments use laser light to create tiny injuries on the target problem areas, stimulating the body’s natural healing process. The damaged skin cells are replaced, creating a younger-looking, smoother skin complexion. While both the Fraxel and Clear + Brilliant treatments achieve beautiful, successful results, there are differences that exist between the two. Dr. Kong can discuss these differences and make her recommendations on the best treatment for you during your consultation.
Other Areas – Neck, Décolleté, Hands
Just imagine this picture: flawless, smooth skin, a tight facial contour, and full cheeks. This is a picture of youth and beauty, right? Not if one has a droopy neckline or a double chin. How about one’s décolleté and hands? Are yours showing signs of aging? Please don’t neglect these and other parts of the body that might be aging too. CoolSculpting Coolmini and Kybella are both viable solutions for getting rid of a double chin. Both treatments are available in Dr. Kong’s San Francisco office. Juvederm can be injected to hands to make them smoother, while wrinkles on the décolleté can be reduced with Ultherapy and pigmentation can be removed with Fraxel or IPL therapy.
Consult with Dr. Kong
For more information on the latest techniques for treating signs of aging on your face, body and skin, contact Dr. Kong by calling 415-673-7600 or request an appointment online.