When it comes to anti-aging, today’s patient has more options than before. Although fifty years ago the only choice if you wanted to take a few years off of your appearance was surgery, today there are a variety of injectables and other treatments that can reduce the signs of aging without the big time or cost commitment of surgery.
Since non-surgical options tend to be cheaper up front and don’t require a long recovery period, you might wonder why anyone would opt for pricier surgery. As it turns out, less invasive treatments haven’t fully replaced surgery. If you’re weighing the pros and cons of either option, there are a few things to think about.
Facelift vs Liquid Facelift
Although facelift and liquid facelift sound like two similar procedures, they actually treat different areas and different signs of aging. A liquid facelift is the non-surgical option. It’s designed to help reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles through a series of injections. Depending on your specific concerns, a liquid facelift procedure can include Botox injections, to reduce the appearance of crow’s feet or frown lines, and a variety of fillers to ease the appearance of lines by the mouth, nose or forehead. The liquid facelift can also restore some volume loss through the use of fillers such as Juvederm Voluma.
In contrasts, a surgical facelift is intended for patients who have a fair amount of loose or sagging skin in the lower part of their face. Patients who are starting to see jowls or a double chin are often better candidates for a traditional facelift than for a liquid lift. There are also slightly less invasive surgical options for treating very early signs of aging and very early signs of skin laxity, such as the S-lift or mini facelift.
Another big difference between a facelift and a liquid facelift is the duration of the results and the length of the recovery period. Many patients can get right back into the swing of things after a liquid facelift, while as much as two weeks is usually needed for recovery after a surgical facelift. The longer recovery period can be balanced out by the fact that a surgical facelift provides results for as long as ten years, while the results from a liquid procedure can fade after several months.
Rhinoplasty vs Non-Surgical Rhinoplasty
Patients who are looking to change the size or shape of their nose or who to correct an issue with the nose, such as a deviated septum, often look to rhinoplasty. When performed by a qualified board certified facial plastic surgeon, rhinoplasty can make a person’s nose better suited to their face or correct any long standing issues with breathing.
There is a non-surgical option available, which involves the use of fillers to change the nose’s shape or size. Non-surgical rhinoplasty may not have the lengthy recovery period of rhinoplasty, nor does it involve any incisions or anesthesia.
But, the tradeoff is that the procedure just doesn’t do as much for the nose as surgery. It can’t make a larger nose smaller, for example, nor can it correct any issues on the inside of the nose. The results from non-surgical rhinoplasty also don’t last nearly as long as those from rhinoplasty. While surgical rhinoplasty can produce permanent results, the results from a non-surgical procedures last for just a year or so, if not less.
Cheek Implants vs. Fillers
A loss of volume from the cheek area is a common part of the aging process. Some people are also born with naturally gaunt or thin cheeks. There are two options for adding or restoring volume to the area – permanent cheek implants or injections of a filler such as Juvederm Voluma. Both options provide similar results, in that they plump up the cheeks and can add definition and shape to the face.
But, they differ in terms of duration and process. For example, cheek implants are meant to be permanent, although you might want to adjust yours as you age and your face continues to change. For the most part, a treatment with Voluma will last for about two years, at which time you can repeat it to maintain the results.
The insertion of the cheek implants is generally a quick procedure, but it is still surgery. The surgeon will make an incision beneath the lower eyelid, then slide the implant in beneath the skin. Many patients need to take about a week off from work to recover afterwards.
Your goals, schedule and budget all play a part in determining whether a surgical or non-surgical procedure is the best option for you. If you’d like to learn more about each option, make an appointment with Dr. Michael Schwartz, a board certified facial plastic surgeon in West Palm Beach, Florida, today. Call 561-228-5888 for an appointment.