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How Fat can Rejuvenate Your Face

How Fat can Rejuvenate Your Face

 Fat Injection Highlands, NCHistorically, facial rejuvenation has required surgical lifting techniques. While procedures such as blepharoplasty eyelid rejuvenation continue to be popular, fewer people are undergoing full facelift procedures these days. Instead, they are choosing minimally invasive procedures that achieve subtle but beautiful results. Fat grafting is a prime example. We are pleased to offer this service in our Highlands office to help our patients feel better about their appearance as they age. Here, we discuss the various ways in which fat can be used to refresh the face.

What is Fat Grafting?

To understand how fat grafting can benefit your appearance, it helps to know the details of this process. It is the most natural and long lasting way to restore the fat that is lost over time and is responsible for much of the signs of aging. This cosmetic procedure may be performed in the office using local anesthesia to numb the area of the body from which fat will be harvested and the area where it will be injected. Depending on the amount of fat we need and the amount of body fat present, we may select the neck, abdomen, or thighs as a donor site. After the area has been numbed, a minor liposuction procedure is performed to obtain the necessary amount needed for injection. The tissue that is aspirated is processed to separate out the fat and stem cells from other tissue and blood. The prepared cells are then placed in a syringe and meticulously injected into the face to achieve the desired amount of contouring or wrinkle reduction.

Fat can rejuvenate the face by enhancing the following areas:

Cheeks

Rounded cheeks with higher cheekbones are an indicator of youthful beauty. With age, the bony structure may degrade. This exacerbates the natural loss of fat resulting flattening of the contours of the mid-face. The insertion of living fat cells across the mid-face restores height, projection, and triangularity to make the mid-face appear younger.

Forehead and Temples

Men and women over the age of 40 may struggle to pinpoint where their cosmetic frustration originates. This can be particularly relevant to the upper face, where the temples can hollow over time and the brow may drop below the bony ridge orbital rim ridge on which it once sat. Fat cells can be injected directly at the temple area to restore fullness to the outer area of the eyes. Injections can also be administered across the brow line to lift the brow without surgery.

Under Eyes

Non-surgical eyelid rejuvenation removing the hollows under the eyes has become one of the most common areas treated with a filler and can achieve outstanding results. Fat injections can achieve the same results but they last longer. Typically, fat is introduced to the area below the eye, not into the eyelid itself, unless absolutely necessary. When inserted into the tear trough it decreases the appearance of under-eye puffiness, and when into hollows it decreases dark circles.

Are You a Candidate?

Most healthy adults who do not have severe gravitational problems are good candidates for facial rejuvenation with fat injections. To learn more about this simple, in office procedure, schedule a consultation at our Highlands office by calling (828) 526-3783.

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.

Ease into the New Year with a Look You Love

Liquid Facelift Highlands, NCA new year can motivate just about every one of us to make new goals. From our experience, we see many men and women become more interested in their appearance. Facial aging is an unavoidable problem for which surgery used to be the only answer. Twenty years ago, even folks whose age-related concerns such as jowls and creases on the lower face were mild had to choose between surgery and a “wait and see” approach.

Not anymore.

The development of lasers, light devices, and injectables has changed the way that we approach the varying degrees of facial aging. If you’re interested in increasing your perception of personal beauty this year, contact our Highlands, NC office. Together, we can develop a strategy that will provide you with the results you want, and that very frequently need not involve a major surgical procedure.

A Look at Today’s Liquid Lift™

One of the most profound changes that occurs as we age is the deflation of critical parts of the face. In many situations where we have historically focused on the skin, the real problem has been volume loss. Naturally, over time, the shape of the face begins to change. Where the face was once wider at the top around the cheeks and temples, it starts to drop during early adulthood. By mid-life, the general Y-shape of the face has deflated into more of a square. Width now resides at the sides of the jawline, leaving the cheeks and temple area rather flat. The skin becomes thin and the underlying muscles overpowers it causing wrinkles and increasing the folds of deflation. Today’s Liquid Lift™ has been developed to correct these specific changes.

The liquid facelift technique that Dr. Buchanan utilizes looks beyond the literal crease or area of sagging and considers the originating cause. That, then, becomes the area to correct. For example, rather than injecting a dermal filler superficially and directly beneath a crease, product becomes more efficient through injection into the mid-face. When volume restores the proper contours to the cheekbones, the concerns created by deflation become much less noticeable.

In skilled hands, a liquid facelift can achieve natural, easy beauty. Learn more about our technique for facial rejuvenation. Call  (828) 526-3783 to schedule a visit with us.

Myths About the Sun and Protection From It:

We all think we know about the sun, what it does to us and how to protect ourselves from it. Unfortunately, most of us really do not know what we need to know. A great deal of this is because most of the people who write about this keep repeating information that has been outdated for years. Though you may think that this is implausible, several studies have shown that it takes an average of 13 years before a new discovery is adopted into general usage. Unfortunately, it has already been well over 20 years we learned new information about the sun and how to protect from it, and it has still not been generally accepted.

 

You only need to use Sunscreen when you “go out in the sun.”

 

This is based on what we previously knew about UVB. Since UVB is immediately absorbed rather than being reflected, it is much less strong in the shade or inside. It is also what causes sunburn. Because of that, it was considered really bad. Also, many modern windows block UVB so you would not sunburn inside. None really block UVA, which is present almost equally all day, all year, at all latitudes and even inside and in the shade. UVA is also the “bad guy.” It is what really causes sun damage. We remember the effects by “UVB, Burn, UVA, Aging.” We, therefore, need to protect from UVA all the time every day. This requires the proper sunblock and sun protective clothing.

 

 “You don’t need sun protection in the winter.”

 

This is similar to the above. While UVB is twice as strong in the summer as it is in winter, the strength of UVA is almost the same. This means that you need to protect from UVA aging all year. This is also true indoors and on cloudy days as UVA is unchanged in strength then also.

“SPF is what you need to look for in selecting a Sunscreen.”

 

SPF is a designation designed to tell you how well the sunscreen protects from sunburn. It has no bearing on whether it protects you from sun damage, however. As I said, sunburn is caused by UVB that is absorbed by everything, including your skin. This is the reason it causes a burn (all the energy is concentrated in the outer skin layer) and present twice as much in the summer as the winter, at noon as morning and evening and in Florida as in North Dakota (because of atmospheric absorption). Since it is UVA that is absorbed into all layers of the skin and causes cellular damage resulting in skin cancers and aging, you need a way to tell if what you are using does that. SPF does not do this.

 

All sunscreens protect from damaging rays equally,

 

Since December of 2013, any product labeled as a sunscreen or sunblock have to protect from both UVA and UVB. Any product that simply puts an SPF on the label but does not claim to be a sunscreen or sunblock does not necessarily have any UVA protection and any that it does have is usually short lived. Even those that are approved as sunscreens are not all equal in the protection provided. There is a long list of chemical sunscreens and the manufacturer can use a mixture of them. Some are better than others. The one thing they all share is that they only last about an hour if you are outside or 2 hours if you are inside. The physical sunblocks are zinc and titanium oxide. Both protect from both UVA and UVB and last until washed or rubbed off. However, zinc is by far the best, protecting maximally over a larger spectrum.

 

Something other than an applied sunscreen or sun protective clothing will protect you,

 

There have been many claims over the years. Most recently, several companies have marketed either a pill or something to drink that is supposed to protect you from sun damage. None of these products work, and the FDA has recently warned these companies to stop making such claims.

 

For proper sun protection, we suggest:

 

Since zinc oxide provides the widest spectrum of maximum protection and lasts as long as it remains in place, this is, not only the best, but the most practical. Probably the main reason it has not been adopted better is another myth, “it is that white stuff the lifeguards used to wear on their noses.” A recent health writer even bemoaned that we did not have a reasonable sunblock or “something other than that white stuff.” The fact is that it has not been “white” for well over 20 years and rubs in clear but provides superb protection. Instead of looking for SPF, we recommend that you simply look at the ingredients and buy one with at least 8% zinc oxide. This will give you all the UVA and UVB protection you need. We also suggest that your clothing is sun protective, either bought that way or washed with Rit SunGuard that washes in sun protection for 20 washes. We sell both in the office. Call, come in or visit our web site to find out more.

Feel Young, Look Young

beauty restAre you feeling younger than you look? Aging does tend to play tricks on us. Feeling young at heart and in spirit is wonderful, especially if your look matches the way you feel. Take heart – here are a few simple things you can do to restore your youthful appearance:

Get Plenty Of Sleep
Sleep deprivation puts you on the fast track to premature aging. Staying well rested will help you look younger and feel more energetic.

Whiten Your Smile
A bright smile will help you look younger. Try over the counter whitening strips or visit your dentist for professional whitening.

Change Your “Do”
Highlights can make your face look younger. Face framing layers and bangs can cover forehead wrinkles. Avoid drastic color changes, however, which can make you look older.

Tone Down Your Makeup
Wearing too much makeup is one of the fastest ways to look older than you are. Keep your make-up light and natural. Heavy foundation and powder settle into your lines and wrinkles. Switch from matte lipstick to a pink gloss to make your lips look younger and fuller.

Get A New Bra
A good bra can do wonders for a more youthful profile. Choose one that lifts and supports.

Care For Your Skin
Protect your skin by washing it gently using an alpha/beta hydroxy cleanser, apply a pH balancer like Vitamin-C Serum, use an 8% Zinc Oxide sunblock daily and throw away your moisturizer. The sooner you start taking proper care of your skin, the longer you’ll be able to maintain a youthful glow. Don’t forget your neck when you’re using these products.

Try Botox
Botox is a low-risk way to reduce the appearance of brow lines, forehead wrinkles, and crow’s feet as well as improve the appearance of the eyes. You’ll need repeat injections every 3-6 months to maintain your wrinkle-free look.

Try A Filler
Fillers can restore lost fullness to your face, reduce or eliminate wrinkles, lines and folds and return a youthful appearance to your lips. A youthful profile has full cheeks with a smooth “S” like curve from the eye to the chin.

We invite you to call our office to schedule a consultation appointment to learn more about the many treatments we offer. Now is the perfect time to change your look and get your best face on.

Microdermabrasion De-Mystified

MicrodermabrasionIf tighter, smoother facial skin is on your “beauty” wish-list but you are a bit timid about injections or invasive surgical procedures, a Microdermabrasion treatment may be right for you.

Exactly what is Microdermabrasion?
To break it down, micro means very small or tiny; derm has to do with the skin (as in “dermatologist”); to abrade means to wear down or rub away (like sandpaper). Added together, we find Microdermabrasion defined as “a cosmetic procedure in which rough facial skin is removed by the application of a fine abrasive.”

During a Microdermabrasion procedure, the very thin, top layer of your facial skin (the epidermis) is abraded with a high-pressure spray of tiny crystals which are then vacuumed away. The procedure diminishes the appearance of fine line, wrinkles, discoloration, scars and other blemishes. Microdermabrasion removes dead skin, uncovering a smoother, glowing, more youthful surface. The beauty of microdermabrasion is that your body recognizes the damage done to the epidermis, and it quickly works to replace the lost skin cells with new, healthier cells. Microdermabrasion is designed to treat only the epidermis. The tiny crystals do not affect your lower skin layer, the dermis.

What are the benefits of Microdermabrasion?
The benefits of Microdermabrasion are very similar to those of chemical peels. Skin discoloration is removed, as well as many signs of aging, scars and sun damage. Your skin will look and feel smoother and softer. Additionally, your skin-care products will be more effective following Microdermabrasion, as your new skin is more receptive to topical treatments.

We look forward to meeting you and explaining the effects of a Microdermabrasion treatment at the Center for Plastic Surgery. The procedure is done as an outpatient procedure in our office, with literally no down time.

Call today, to schedule an appointment: (828) 526-3783.

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.

Myths about the Sun and Protection from it:

We all think we know about the sun, what it does to us and how to protect ourselves from it. Unfortunately, most of us really do not know what we need to know. A great deal of this is because most of the people who write about this and even many Dermatologists and Plastic Surgeons keep repeating information that has been outdated for years. Though you may think that this is implausible, several studies have shown that it takes an average of 13 years before a new discovery is adopted into general usage. Unfortunately, it has already taken well over 20 years to adopt new knowledge about the sun and how to protect from it, and it has still not been generally accepted. The following are some widely held myths:

SPF is what you need to look for in selecting a Sunscreen.

SPF is a designation designed to tell you how well the sunscreen protects from sunburn. It has no bearing on whether it protects you from sun damage that causes skin cancer and aging, however. Sunburn is caused by UVB that is absorbed by everything, including your skin. This is the reason it causes a burn (all the energy is concentrated in the outer skin layer) and is present twice as much in the summer as the winter, at noon as morning and evening and in Florida as in North Dakota (because of atmospheric absorption). Since it is UVA that is absorbed into all layers of the skin and causes cellular damage resulting in skin cancers and aging, you need a way to tell if what you are using does that. SPF does not do this.

All sunscreens protect from damaging rays equally.

Since December of 2013, any product labeled as a sunscreen or sunblock have to protect from both UVA and UVB. Any product that simply puts an SPF on the label but does not claim to be a sunscreen or sunblock does not necessarily have any UVA protection and any that it does have is usually short lived. Even those that are approved as sunscreens are not all equal in the protection provided. There is a long list of chemical sunscreens and the manufacturer can use a mixture of them. Some are better than others. The one thing they all share is that they only last about an hour if you are outside or 2 hours if you are inside since the sun actually deactivates them. The physical sunblocks are zinc, titanium and iron oxide. They all protect from both UVA and UVB and last until washed or rubbed off. However, zinc is by far the best, protecting maximally over a larger spectrum and is the easiest to apply.

You only need to use it when you “go out in the sun.”

This, again, is based on what we previously knew about UVB. Since UVB is immediately absorbed rather than being reflected, it is much less strong in the shade or inside. Besides, many modern windows block UVB. None really block UVA, which is present almost equally all day, all year, at all latitudes and even inside and in the shade. We, therefore, need to protect from it all the time every day. This requires the proper sunblock and sun protective clothing.

Something other than an applied sunscreen or sun protective clothing will protect you,

There have been many claims over the years. Most recently, several companies have marketed either a pill or something to drink that is supposed to protect you from sun damage. None of these products work, and the FDA has recently warned these companies to stop making such claims.

For proper sun protection, we suggest:

Since zinc oxide provides the widest spectrum of maximum protection and lasts as long as it remains in place, this is, not only the best, but the most practical. Probably the main reason it has not been adopted better is another myth, “it is that white stuff the lifeguards used to wear on their noses.” A recent health writer even bemoaned that we did not have a reasonable sunblock or “something other than that white stuff.” The fact is that it has not been “white” for well over 20 years and rubs in clear but provides superb protection. Instead of looking for SPF, we recommend that you simply look at the ingredients and buy one with at least 8% zinc oxide. This will give you all the UVA and UVB protection you need. We also suggest that your clothing be sun protective, either bought that way or washed with Rit SunGuard that washes in sun protection for 20 washes. We sell both in the office.

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