Patients often come into the office with pictures of themselves from their younger years for comparison. However, many people cannot distinguish what in fact has caused their face to look older. It is apparent that wrinkling and skin sagging will add a few years to a face, but understanding what has caused the skin to sag and lines to form is crucial to devising a treatment plan to match the unique issues and goals of each individual patient. For smile lines, Dr. Yang often recommends non-surgically filling the wrinkles and areas of lost volume with injectable fillers.
To understand why dermal fillers are a good option, rather than a facelift for example, a general understanding of the facial aging process is necessary. If you look at younger pictures of yourself, you will notice fullness to your face that is no longer there. While some people would call this the “maturing” process of the face, it is actually the facial tissue succumbing to the effects of gravity, which ultimately results in volume loss. As we lose facial volume throughout the course of several years, the facial skin begins to “deflate” as would a balloon if you slowly let the air out of it. This deflation of the skin on our faces causes the once smooth contours that made our faces appear youthful and radiant to cave in as skin elasticity decreases. Volume loss coupled with decreased skin elasticity causes fine lines and even deeper wrinkles and skin folds to form, as the skin and tissue reposition themselves. While there are many surgical and non-surgical procedures to address this process, for smile lines, injecting dermal fillers directly into the folds is the best way to create lasting, natural results.
Smile lines, or nasolabial folds, are the lines that create the crease from the corners of the lips to the nasal crease at the edge of the nostril. Some people are more prone to getting these folds than others; however, they are very difficult to get ride of completely using traditional cosmetic surgical techniques. The best way to address these lines is through the use of dermal fillers (injectables).
Injectables are made of synthetic, biocompatible materials that are injected directly into the folds of the face to fill the area and add volume. These injections are not permanent and last varying lengths of time depending on the type of injectable used. While Dr. Yang is an expert at using dermal fillers in all areas the face, his surgical expertise and artistry are especially evident in the way in which he injects nasolabial folds.
To add volume to the smile lines, Dr. Yang prefers to use the dermal filler Radiesse because it lasts longer than other dermal fillers (up to a year) and does not deflate after the initial injection. Other injectables used by Dr. Yang for smile lines include Juvederm Ultra XC and Restylane.