The centuries long quest for the fountain of youth has only recently (past 15 years) led to the discovery of factors that increase aging. The sun, smoking and other lifestyle choices can cause a loss of elasticity which leads to sagging of the skin and the appearance of aging. Another factor includes 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 ultimately result in skin tightening. If this is something you are considering, keep reading for more details on surgical and non-surgical options.
Non-Surgical Options for Skin Tightening
The non-surgical options are not nearly as invasive as surgical options and are usually considered as a first line treatment protocol. Most of the devices used for non-surgical intervention send heat 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. There is virtually no recovery time for these procedures.
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 light, unipolar and biopolar radio frequency energy have been known to help smooth the outer appearance of the face. While some of these processes last longer than others, none of them are permanent.(1). Patients 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. (2). Here’s a video that explains light therapy for acne, in more details:
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 generally 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 also significantly reduced. The most successful candidates will also regenerate collagen that produces a more youthful appearance.
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. There are several products available, such as the popular item below, which can help with the tightening process:
Surgical Options for Skin Tightening
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 face-lift will lift the jowls and clean up the neck line. The face lift procedure commonly removes excess skin and tightens the muscles underneath the skin. If this is something you are contemplating, have a look at the following video to get an idea on what’s involved:
Skin tightening procedures are a lot more common than you might think and nowadays, the search for a more youthful appearance may not be as vain as you might first consider. Is skin tightening for you? Unfortunately, we can’t answer that question. That should be a frank discussion between you and your doctor, to discuss the pros and cons and whether or not you should go through with it.
Disclaimer – Please keep in mind that we are not dermatologists here at Acne Help Today. This was posted for informational purposes only. Please consult your doctor and/or dermatologist regarding you health/acne issues.
(1) The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery: Tightening using Radiofrequency or Pulsed Light
(2) American Academy of Dermatology: New Technologies Tighten Skin From Head to Toe Without Surgery