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PHONE: (828) 526-3783 | TOLL-FREE: (877) 526-3784

209 Hospital Dr #202
Highlands, NC 28741

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Treating Facial Skin Wrinkles

Treating Facial Skin Wrinkles

Wrinkled or crepey facial skin is caused by an interplay of the skin and how it ages, gravity, loss of supporting volume, and action of the underlying muscles. As we age, the skin stops producing both collagen (the substance that gives the skin its thickness and strength) and elastin (the substance that makes the skin elastic). This happens around 30 years of age with collagen only being made after that as part of healing. With both collagen and elastin present, the skin contracts and then, because of its thickness, resists further muscle pull. With the loss of them, the skin does not contract and the muscle pulls the skin further than normal and causes it to pleat. With time, the muscles also hypertrophy and pull even harder and the places where the skin tends to bend become permanent lines. How much the skin crinkles or wrinkles varies due to your genetic predisposition and how you have treated your skin. Smoking, diet and other environmental factors speed the process. There are, however, several things that can be done to improve or reverse this.
 

Use of Botox®

If the muscle can be weakened with Botox® or a similar neurotoxin, the process can be slowed. This works best around the eyes and in the forehead where the muscle function is not essential. If started early, it can even slow the creation of wrinkles.
 

Improving the Quality of the Skin:

You can also slow the process and even reverse it by adding collagen and elastic tissue to the skin. Collagen can be added by use of tretinoin (Retin-A) or good retinol or by microneedling or similar laser procedures. We prefer tretinoin or retinol regularly as it continually stimulates collagen production, is less invasive and, we think, more reliable. Elastin can be added by use of Obagi’s ELASTIderm®, the only product proven to do this. We generally add these to Basic Skin Care at about 30 years of age when the skin stops producing collagen and elastin without some encouragement.
 

Reversing Wrinkles:

If the wrinkles are minimal or small, the above options will reverse them, but it takes about a year or so to do so. There are 2 things you can do to improve the wrinkles faster. One is laser resurfacing or a leveling peel that brings the surface of the skin down to the level of the bottom of the wrinkles and stimulates significant collagen production. Both these, however, have a prolonged recovery. The other is to fill the lines or depressions with a filler like Juvederm® Volbella and then crisscross it under the skin to stiffen it. This also helps the tretinoin work since it can increase the body’s use of the hyaluronic acid from the filler to convert it to collagen (something that is now proven to happen). Fillers are also the answer if the wrinkles are due to volume loss as they fill deep, replacing the lost volume, and stretch the skin back, flattening many of the wrinkles. This is especially true with lip wrinkles. The recovery from this is minimal with only a little swelling and, occasionally, some bruising that is easily camouflaged.

To find out more or to determine what is right for you, call 828-526-3783 to make an appointment at our Highlands office.

Fillers or Blepharoplasty: What is the Best Option for You?

Blepharoplasty Highlands, NCThe eye area is a point of concern for many adults. Several different problems under the eyes can cause frustrating problems, such as puffy bags, lines or dark circles. These can be caused by the stretching of the eyelid skin, descent of the tissues or loss of supporting tissues. You may have heard of filler treatment for under-eye problems like these and that there is a surgical procedure, lower blepharoplasty, that can improve the appearance of the under-eye. Both provide an excellent opportunity for a younger, fresher looking face, but it is likely that one is a better option for you based on your desired outcome, what caused the problem and your preferences. Here, we discuss details of blepharoplasty and fillers to set you on your best path.

Procedural Similarities and Differences

Blepharoplasty is an eyelid surgery that is performed as an outpatient procedure. It is best for those who have too much skin in the under-eye. In most cases, unless cheek elevation also needs to be done, the procedure can be done in the office with local anesthesia. Our blepharoplasty techniques are conservative, focusing on removing excess and repositioning tissue to achieve an excellent, long-lasting contour beneath the eyes. Lower blepharoplasty surgery can take anywhere from an hour to several hours, depending on the degree of change needed to achieve the desired outcome. Recovery is rapid. Sutures are removed in 3-5 days and most swelling and bruising resolve in 10 days to 2 weeks. You can resume most activities in several days.

Filler treatment is done in the office and can be done with local anesthetic if needed or a topical numbing cream can be applied to the skin. The treatment itself usually takes less than an hour, and all fillers we use contain a numbing medication so any sensation is minimized. They are ideal for those who have simply lost volume and have minimal excess skin. A filler below the tear trough at the upper cheek can restore volume to the area and diminish the appearance of both hollowness and puffiness. By smoothing the area, shadows and highlights are eliminated reducing “dark circles.” You do not need to take time off work or social obligations to recover from filler treatment. If, instead of an off the shelf filler, you opt for fat grafting, recovery is almost the same.

In some people, a combination of treatment may be the most reasonable. In fact, we have stopped doing cheek lifts and, instead, combine Blepharoplasty and filler or fat grafting.

The results of blepharoplasty last years. The eyes will always look younger than they would have had a blepharoplasty never been performed. However, the area will continue to age over time and further treatment may be desired again in the future. Fillers, on the other hand, are partially absorbed naturally by the body over time. This means that some of the filler is permanent having been used by the body to create new collagen, the building block of the tissues. Because the filler we use for eyelid rejuvenation is the longest lasting one available, it lasts minimally two years and has lasted significantly longer, in one case, well over 4 years.

There are pros and cons to both forms of eyelid rejuvenation and each has a specific problem where it is ideal. For further information and to find out whether fillers or blepharoplasty would be best for you, call our Highlands office at (828) 526-3783.

Give Yourself a “Hand”

Consider your hands. Think of all the things they have accomplished over the course of your life: The meals prepared, the love given, the dishes washed, the diapers changed, the letters written and the flowers planted. Your hands have worked hard and are one of the first places to show the visible signs of aging. With time, you may begin to see darkened “age spots” or a loss of fatty tissue which makes your hands look bony and perhaps older than your age.

hand careHand rejuvenation treatments can reverse the visible signs of aging, including the effects of sun damage and can help restore your hands to a more youthful appearance – one that matches your youthful, active lifestyle. Various treatments are available and treatment options may be combined to help you achieve the look you desire.

Here are four ways Dr. Buchanan can treat your aging hands at The Center For Plastic Surgery:

  1. Laser Like Skin Rejuvenation – The Ellipse IPL® offers the advantages of intense pulsed light therapy, a proven technology that treats the red and brown areas of sun damage using short bursts of laser like light which penetrate and gently remove “age spots.”
  2. Chemical Peel – The Obagi® RADIANCE Peel is a salicylic acid peel that can improve the look, texture and feel of your hands in minutes with no down time. Glycolic fruit acid peels remove the dry, top layer of the skin to reveal healthier, moist skin underneath.
  3. Microdermabrasion – This is a superficial skin polishing that “sands” off the first layer of the skin with tiny crystals. The procedure is non-surgical, non-invasive, fast and easy.
  4. Injectables – When injected, fillers such as Juvederm injectable gels or your own fat plump the skin on your hands to give them a more youthful appearance by somewhat hiding the veins, bones and tendons.

As with any cosmetic procedure, it’s important to have realistic expectations and keep in mind that these procedures are designed for improvement, not perfection.

If you would like to know more, call 828-526-3783 for a consultation with Dr. Buchanan, today, and enjoy younger looking hands.

It’s Possible to Maintain a Youthful Look into Your 50’s & Beyond

 Medi-Spa Services Highlands, NCAging gracefully doesn’t have to be impossible. In fact, one of our goals here at the Center For Plastic Surgery is to help everyone age as well and gracefully as possible. If you have reached that point in your life, maybe around your 50’s, where you are looking in the mirror and wondering where your youth went, then let us help you find it again. Although we won’t be able to take you back more than a few decades,  we can reverse considerable aging of your skin, face and body.

Watch Your Skin Care

If your skin care regimen has not  maintained your skin looking young and radiant, then it is time for a medical grade system that will reverse everything that has happened to it. If you have maintained most of your skin’s youthful properties, you may just need to modify a few things to keep it looking healthy and young. Frequently, we don’t realize how our skin is aging until it actually requires a lot of work to reverse the problems. That is why we suggest adding retinol to basic skin care of a gentle cleanser, pH balancer, exfoliant and sun block at about 30 years of age. This can markedly help reduce fine lines and wrinkles later on.

Try Fillers and Botox

If you haven’t already, give fillers and Botox a try. Both of these injectables are great at reversing early facial aging without having to undergo surgery. Plus, because they are more affordable than surgery, they may be a good jumping off point. Botox is also one of the mainstays of preventing wrinkles by correcting the imbalance between thinning skin and increasing muscle function, one of the main contributors to wrinkles and crinkles. Once wrinkles are present, fillers are important also in reversing the problem without laser or peels.

Consider Surgery

There is absolutely nothing wrong with having a surgical lift; whether it be a forehead lift, eye tuck or something else. In fact, it’s the best way to get long-lasting results. Our present procedures are easier and have a faster recovery than those in the past.

As you can see, we have more than a few ways to help you maintain or get your youthful look back. To learn more about these and other options, schedule a consultation at our Highlands office by calling us at (828) 526-3783.

What Do You Know About Wrinkles?

If you are a man or woman “of a certain age,” the aging of your body and skin manifests itself in countless ways, facial wrinkles being one of the most visible and obvious.

Why wrinkles?

What’s the main causes of wrinkly skin? The sun’s UV and UVB rays resulting in an unbalance between the skin and the underlying muscles that, in the face, are attached to the skin.

How does this happen? The sun’s UVA rays cause a loss of your skin’s connective tissues including collagen and elastic tissue making your skin thinner, less elastic and much more vulnerable to wrinkles which are the result. More importantly, repeated, unprotected sun exposure can cause skin cancer. Additionally, the effects of the sun’s damaging rays are cumulative over your lifetime.

Most wrinkles appear around the eyes, eyebrows and mouth. This is because of repeated facial expressions, such as frowning and smiling. Smiling is a good thing, but worrying is not. Those frown lines don’t need extra help to deepen!

What helps? Here are 7 things to consider:

facial rejuvenationWrinkles are a natural result of aging, that’s true, but there are some things you can do to prevent or reduce them:

1.  Sunscreen is critically important but it doesn’t do any good in a drawer. Be sure to choose a product that contains at least 8% zinc oxide and re-apply it whenever you rub or wash it off (other products are OK, but need to be reapplied hourly outside and every 2 hours indoors). Don’t forget your hands and neck.

2. Stay away from tanning beds. They use UVA, the damaging part of sun rays.

3. Be gentle. Don’t scrub your skin with a rough cloth; don’t rub and pull at your skin; use an easy touch when applying makeup, especially around the eye area.

4.Use a retinol cream applied daily, especially after 30 years of age to reduce loss of collagen. If you are in your 50’s or older and haven’t been using a retinol, you probably need tretinoin (Retin-A).

5. Consider adding Obagi ELASTIderm® that converts some of the collagen to elastic tissue. This is especially true the older you are.

6. If you smoke, quit. Smoking greatly accelerates the aging process and causes wrinkles to appear prematurely.

7. Consider injectables, like Juvederm and Botox, if your wrinkles are deep and pronounced.

Today is the beginning…the rest of your life awaits you! Give Dr. Buchanan a call and request your complementary consultation 828.526.3783.

How to Get Baby Smooth Skin In Your 50’s and 60’s and Beyond

Beautiful Skin Highlands, NCIf you have children, grandchildren, or just like taking care of your friend’s children then you know there’s one thing everybody wishes they had that a baby does; smooth skin. A baby’s skin is ineviable because it’s not only flaw-free, but it is also hydrated and soft— something we all wish for. As we age, our skin starts to lose collagen and elastin in it which makes it more wrinkly and less smooth. If you are in your 50’s and 60’s and can’t seem to get the soothe skin that you want, we have non-invasive ways to help. Let’s take a closer look at how.

Tretinoin (Retin-A®) & ELASTIderm®

One reason that young skin looks so good is that all the cells are continually working to rebuild collagen (the main substance of the support layer) and elastin (the part that makes the skin elastic). With sun exposure, this process gets harder and harder and, after about 30 years of age, the cells that rebuild these simply stop working unless they are stimulated. There are several ways to stimulate them such as some lasers and micro needling, but the easiest and best way is to is a good skin care system including Tretinoin (Retin-A®) & Obagi® ELASTIderm®. The former stimulates collagen to thicken the skin and the latter stimulates elastic tissue. By using these over all the movable facial skin you can significantly retain a softer, more hydrated and more elastic skin.

Botox

Fine lines and wrinkles don’t just happen on your cheeks and around your mouth. In fact, most people notice their first wrinkle on their forehead or around their eyes. With injections of a neurotoxin that reduces muscle function like Botox, we can help to reduce the formation of fine lines and wrinkles around your eyes and forehead and leave you with a more baby-like complexion.

Fillers

Fillers like Juvederm are designed to do exactly as their name suggests; fill in fine lines and wrinkles. Made from hyaluronic acid (a naturally occurring substance in the body used to build collagen) these two fillers can also help add volume and contour to your cheeks and around your mouth. They are useful especially if you already have wrinkles that are present when the underlying muscles are relaxed. With thin skin and multiple wrinkles, the filer can be placed directly under the dermis (the collagen containing support layer of the skin) to thicken it make it harder to wrinkle. The body can use some of this hyaluronic acid to make new collagen, leaving you feeling and looking one step closer to having baby-like skin.

MicroPeels

Another way to get that baby perfect skin is getting frequent micro peels. Your skin type and your exact issues of concern will help determine what type of peel will be best for you. MicroPeels work by targeting the top layer of your skin removing the outer dead cell layer that has been created by time and sun exposure leaving healthier, brighter skin in the process. They also get rid of external weight that tends to increase the incidence of wrinkles.

Having that smooth baby skin doesn’t have to be an unattainable fantasy. With the help of our staff at the  Center For Plastic Surgery, we have a variety of both non-invasive and surgical procedures we can use to help you get a more youthful glow. To learn more, schedule a consultation at our Highland’s office by calling us at (828) 526-3783.

Radiesse® Vs Juvederm Voluma®, What’s the Difference?


dermal fillers Highlands, NC
Let’s face it: unless you’re a teenager trying to pass for 21, no matter how old you are, you want to look younger. Because aging gracefully is now more attainable than ever, there are a variety of surgical and non-invasive treatments that we offer patients here at the Center for Plastic Surgery. Whether you’re in your twenties or significantly older, fillers are one of the most popular noninvasive procedures that we use to help soften fine lines and wrinkles and add more volume to the face and lips.

Two similar injectables that we have offered here at our office to add volume to the cheeks, under-eye, pre-jowl, and nose are Radiesse and Juvederm Voluma. Although both of these injectables are fillers designed for the same problem, they are different. These differences have caused us to prefer one over the other. Let’s take a closer look.

Radiesse®

Radiesse has been used for cosmetic purposes since 2005 and was the first soft tissue filler that was heavy enough to elevate the deep tissue and help with volume loss under the eye, in the cheeks, and in the pre-jowl area. Made from calcium hydroxylapatite— a naturally occurring compound in the body used in cleft palate repair in children for many years— Radiesse works on two levels. When it is initially injected, it works to automatically add more volume to the area but it also works to encourage your body’s natural production of collagen— which helps make the results last longer than other fillers before it. The average longevity is 18 months. Its biggest drawback is its lack of reversibility.

Juvederm Voluma®

Here at our office, we offer a variety of  Juvederm fillers used for different purposes, but we are going to focus on Juvederm Voluma. Voluma hasn’t been around for as long as Radiesse but took off when it was released in 2014 because of its safety and longevity. Made from hyaluronic acid, also a naturally occurring substance but reversible, Voluma works the same as Radiesse by filling deep spaces to help add more volume. It, too, unlike any other filler other than Radiesse, is heavy enough to support the tissues. It lasts a minimum of 2 years and we have seen it last well beyond 3 years. Because the price per month of longevity is less than Radiesse and, because of its reversibility making it safer, it is now our preferred filler for volume replacement. We combine it with the other Juvederm products to give you the best results for whatever problem you have that fillers can correct.

If you want to learn more about fillers, schedule a consultation at our Highlands office today by calling us at (828) 526-3783.

Can You Undo Your Fillers?

facial fillers Highlands, NCFillers are one of the most popular ways to help decrease the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, rejuvenate your mouth and correct areas of tissue loss and abnormal contours whether from aging or other cause. Lasting from about 3-4 months to over 2 years (all the ones used by The Center for Plastic Surgery usually last at least 10 months to greater than 2 years), facial fillers last a lot longer than other alternatives like Botox. But, if you have an adverse reaction to facial fillers such as Juvederm or Restylane, or you don’t like your results, you may want to undo them. So, can fillers be reversed? Read on to learn more.

What Are the Risks?

When done by someone who is an expert in filler use, problems are quite rare. In fact, the most common problem is needing to add filler to achieve your desired result. This is because experts inject them conservatively, preferring to add than having to take away. The most common other problems are small areas where the filler is palpable, or swelling of the lower eyelid. The latter is most common when injectors use old methods to try and rejuvenate the eyelid area but can occur from any injection around the lower lid.

Let’s Fix It

If you are one of the very rare people unhappy with your filler results, we will do whatever we can to make sure that we get it right. A lot of times, patients aren’t happy with their results either because they didn’t get enough fillers to begin with or because they haven’t given it enough time surrounding reaction to resolve. On average, it takes your tissues about two weeks for the fillers to show their full effect and really fill in the areas on your face. Come into our office if you are unhappy with your results and we will do our best to fix the issue.

Removal

If you do have a rare adverse reaction to facial fillers, we can remove all or part of what was injected to achieve your desires. Although it’s very rare for patients to want us to take out their fillers, it’s easy for us to inject hyluronidase to absorb them as long as they are hyaluronic acid fillers (the only type we now use because of their safety). How severe your reaction is to the filler or how long you’ve had it will help us determine if we can effectively correct the problem.

Facial fillers are beneficial to the majority of our patients. If, however, you are dissatisfied with your results or if you are having an adverse reaction to them, Dr. Buchanan will do his best to ensure that you leave the office happy. To learn more about fillers or to schedule a consultation with our office, contact the Center For Plastic Surgery.

Fillers for Smoothing Rather than Plumping

dermal fillers Highlands, NC

Celebrities like Kylie Jenner have made plumping up virtually every part of the face not only covetable but sexy as well. However, while a lot of women— young and old— have sought out the help of fillers like Juvederm and Restylane to help add volume to their cheeks and lips, fillers are gaining more and more popularity for a different reason: to smooth out the face or return it to normal contours. To help you understand why this benefit is gaining more traction, we have created a brief guide. Read on to learn more.

It Looks More Natural

Eating a diet full of natural ingredients and using all-natural makeup and skin care is a trend that isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. Now, more than ever, people want to know exactly what they’re putting in and on their body, and what it’s doing to them. Along those same lines, people are starting to like the idea of looking more natural. And, knowing what normal or natural is, when we at the Center For Plastic Surgery use a filler to smooth the skin or facial contour, it gives our patients a more subtle, and natural look overall— leaving you looking far from plastic. The older you are, the more likely you are to need to fill areas where soft tissue has been lost or gravity has made it look that way. In these cases, “plumping” is merely returning an area to its “normal” or natural, youthful contour.

It Is Good for All Age Groups

When it comes to fillers, there isn’t a designated age that we encourage our patients to start getting them. However, because even individuals in their 20’s start to lose some elasticity in their skin or have congenital depressions, fillers for smoothness are ideal for people of all ages. Whether you’re in your 20’s, 30’s, 40’s, 50’s, 60’s, and beyond, having smooth skin and rounded contours is always on trend.

The Juvéderm family of fillers (Ultra, Volbella, Vollure and Voluma) are some of the most popular fillers world wide. Additionally, they are our choice because of their compositions that provide the proper selection for what is needed anywhere in the skin or face and they last longer than anything similar. Derived from hyaluronic acid, a substance naturally occurring in the body, these fillers are a safe and natural a way to plump and smooth your skin and face. To learn more about these fillers or to schedule a consultation, contact the Center For Plastic Surgery today!

What To Do In Your Filler and Injectible “Between” Times

dermal fillersWhether you’re a Juvederm, Botox, Belotero or Radiesse fan, it’s a good idea to care for your skin between your treatments. You want the best, most optimum results, and we want that for you, too. That’s why it makes sense to care for your skin, everyday, and most importantly, between your filler and injectable treatments. To that end, here are a few “between” time tips:

  • Be certain to remove your makeup every night. Ug! Sometimes that’s the very last thing you want to do before bed. But leaving your makeup on while you sleep can lead to pimples and even more severe break-outs. These won’t actually interfere with your filler and injectable treatments but break-outs can lead to scarring and are just not a good “”
  • Exfoliate at least once a week. This is an especially good idea during the winter months but is beneficial for your skin year-round. Use a cream or gel exfoliator and a gentle motion to rid your facial skin of dry, dead skin cells. The perfect time to exfoliate is in the shower when your skin is warm and moist. This gentle, circular, scrubbing motion also helps increase your body’s production of the essential skin protector and protein, collagen. Look for an exfoliator that does not contain micro-beads, as these are harmful to the environment.
  • Add moisture to your skin every day. After cleansing your skin morning and night, and while it is damp, treat it to a rich moisturizing cream or lotion – preferably one with a sunscreen for daytime use. There is nothing that can benefit your thirsty, dry skin more than moisturizing it. There are serums and hydrating creams made especially for each skin type, be it dry, normal or oily, so do your research and find the perfect one for your skin type. Ask us for a recommendation at your next appointment!
  • Drink more water. This goes without saying and is good advice for your body, generally. Water is a purifier and gets things moving in your body. This absolutely shows on your face and skin!

We want to be your Highlands skin-care specialists.

Call for a consultation appointment, today, to learn about the many treatments we have is store for your beautiful skin: (828) 526-3783.