What are Injectable Dermal Fillers?
Dermal fillers are gel-like substances that are injected beneath the skin to restore lost volume, smooth fine lines and deep creases, or enhance facial contours. Annually, millions of men and women have facial rejuvenation treatments as dermal fillers, which are a safer and more cost-effective way to look younger without surgery and minimal downtime.
How Can Dermal Fillers Enhance My Appearance?
- Smooth out wrinkles between the eyes
- Smooth out forehead wrinkles
- Smooth out wrinkles at the outside edge of the eyes, referred to as “Crow’s Feet”.
- Smooth out lines around nose and mouth. (a.k.a. marionette lines, smile lines and parentheses)
- Enhance & restore volume to sunken cheeks
- Diminish vertical lip lines
- Plump & enhance the lips
- Smooth out a chin crease
During the Pre-treatment, you will be evaluated by our Lux Aesthetics Medical Services physician or Nurse Practitioner as well as a Registered Nurse. We will evaluate your area of concern and review your medical history. While the risks associated with dermal fillers are minimal, you need to fully disclose your medical history prior to treatment, as certain allergies, skin and neurological conditions, or medications can jeopardize your safety or results. For instance, you need to disclose if you have been taking NSAIDs (e.g., aspirin, Advil, Motrin, Aleve, ibuprofen, naproxen) or blood thinners, as these increase the likelihood of bruising.
Your Injectable Filler Treatment
Just before treatment, the area will be cleaned, and you may be given a topical anesthetic to numb the area prior to injection. Many filler products also contain lidocaine, a mild anesthetic, which is intended to help minimize discomfort during and after your treatment. Your provider will then inject a precise amount of filler strategically beneath the skin.
Depending on the product and the areas treated, you should be able to notice results immediately after receiving filler injections. Some patients experience mild bruising and swelling, but these are temporary and should subside over the days following treatment. We advise our patients to take the day off from exercise or other strenuous activity.
How Long Do the Results Last?
How long the effects of dermal filler treatments will last varies widely, depending on the product used, the area of treatment, and the patient. Generally speaking, the denser the product is and the more deeply it is injected, the longer it will last, although this is not a hard and fast rule. To maintain your results, treatment may be repeated, adjusting the amount and techniques as necessary to ensure optimal results.
Hyaluronic acid fillers tend to be the most temporary option, and therefore are often recommended for first-time filler patients. These will typically last from 6 to 12 months, depending on treatment. For example, injections to the lips will wear out a little faster than those to the nasolabial folds. Certain HA fillers, such as VOLUMA®, are formulated to last longer, but are usually limited to certain areas, such as the cheeks.
With the help of an experienced, qualified provider, injectable fillers can provide natural-looking enhancements to help you feel more confident in your appearance.
Hyaluronic Acid (HA) Dermal Fillers
Hyaluronic acid is a naturally occurring substance that is already found in your skin. It helps keep skin plump and hydrated. HA fillers are typically soft and gel-like. The results are temporary, lasting 6 to 12 months or longer before the body gradually and naturally absorbs the particles. Certain HA fillers are infused with lidocaine to help minimize discomfort during and after treatment.
FDA approved HA fillers include: JUVÉDERM®, VOLUMA®, VOLBELLA®, VOLLURE®, Restylane®, Restylane® Silk, and Restylane® Lyft (formerly Perlane®). Newest to the market is Restylane Refine® and Restylane Define®.
Calcium Hydroxylapatite (CaHA) Dermal Fillers
Calcium hydroxylapatite is also a naturally occurring substance, found primarily in our bones. When used in a filler, the calcium particles are very tiny, almost microscopic, and suspended in a smooth gel. The consistency of a calcium hydroxylapatite filler is typically thicker than that of a hyaluronic acid filler, and the results will typically last longer as well, about 12 months for most patients. Calcium hydroxylapatite is also reported to help stimulate natural collagen production, and it is typically used for deeper lines and wrinkles.
FDA approved calcium hydroxylapatite fillers include Radiesse.
Any mild swelling, pinprick bleeding, or bruising should resolve in a few days, although it is possible to last up to two weeks. Expect some small but firm ridges that you can feel under the skin. Do not massage these unless instructed by the physician. These typically lessen during the week following treatment.
- Gently apply ice packs to treated areas every few hours, for 10-20 minutes. Continue as needed until swelling resolves.
- Tylenol, if you are able to take it, can be helpful for any discomfort.
- Arnica sublingual (under the tongue) tablets may be taken daily until bruising and swelling resolve. Arnica is available at CVS and Walgreens.
- May resume cosmetics or other skin products the day following treatment.
Contact our office for any concerns (844) 589-7233 to speak to a treatment nurse.
Retreatment is common at 6-8 months, depending on type and sites of injections. It may be helpful to have an appointment for additional injections before the benefits of the filler have fully faded.