What are dermal fillers?
Dermal fillers are made of various kinds of natural and man-made or synthetic materials that have been developed over the years for injection into the skin.
They help to restore our skin to its former youthful appearance, as the material is injected into areas where it needs to be plumped up again and made to look firmer. Dermal fillers come in different consistencies, and in general, the thicker the product, the deeper it is injected into the dermal layer of the skin to help plump out fine to deep lines and wrinkles, such as naso-labial folds (nose to mouth lines), smooth and soften the appearance of facial lines, fill scars, contour the cheeks and chin or augment lips. As the skin ages, it gradually loses some of its collagen and fat. These are the materials that prevent the skin from becoming saggy. Thus, as we age, our skin can become thinner and more wrinkled and lined. Dermal fillers help to restore our skin to its former youthful appearance.
What are the different dermal fillers types?
Hyaluronic acid is a naturally occurring substance found in the spaces between the cells of body tissues in all animals and it work by binding to water, thus plumping and hydrating the skin and diminishing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. The Hyaluronic acid in the Dermal Fillers attracts water molecules which help to hydrate the skin as well as restoring fullness resulting in a more refreshed, youthful appearance. It has already been used widely in general medicine to help eye surgeons perform cataract operations, and for injection into arthritic joints to aid movement. It is estimated that 30 million patients around the world have been treated with some form of hyaluronic acid.
Calcium hydroxyapatite is injectable dermal filler, is used to fill moderate to severe wrinkles, fine lines, and create a fuller appearance of facial features. Calcium hydroxyapatite is a natural substance found in human bone that acts as a base for which collagen can grow on, thus promoting increased fullness of the skin.
The following brands of filler are available:
Juvéderm® The Juvéderm® range of products offers a natural, long lasting alternative to surgery. These healthcare provider-administered injections offer natural beauty without surgery
Restylane® Restylane filler and skin booster products smooth away wrinkles, enhance facial contours, create fuller lips, and revitalise your skin.
Belotero® It comes in three product formulations which are basic, soft and intense. For volume enhancement treatments there are Belotero basic and intense and Belotero soft is more suitable for superficial wrinkles.
Radiesse® What makes RADIESSE truly unique is the ability of the product to act as a scaffold under the skin, providing structure and stimulating your own natural collagen to grow.
Which areas are most commonly treated with Dermal Fillers?
The most common areas treated with Dermal Fillers are for the lines extending from the nose to the mouth (nasolabial folds), lines extending from the lips (smokers lines), lines on the cheeks, and lines around the mouth (marionette lines). Dermal Fillers are also used for augmentation of the lips, cheeks and jowls.
How long does a Dermal Filler treatment take?
Depending on the areas to be treated with the Dermal Fillers or the amount of product required, the treatment session usually takes around 30-40 minutes.
What happens during a Dermal Filler treatment?
Topical anaesthetic cream is applied to the area to be treated before the Dermal Fillers are injected into the skin beneath the wrinkle using a very fine disposable needle. The Dermal Filler is then massaged into the lines to ensure that the product is even and smooth across the line being treated.
How long do Dermal Fillers last for?
This again, depends on the area that is treated. Dermal Fillers injected into the lips will usually last between 6-9 months, and nose to mouth lines (nasolabial folds) would be expected to last 12-15 months. The Dermal Filler is gradually broken down and absorbed by the body. Depending on the type of filler used, and the area treated, further treatments are usually required to maintain the effect. If no further top up treatments are given then the wrinkles and lines will return to their previous appearance but will be no worse than before treatment.
When will I notice the effects with a Dermal Filler Treatment?
The effects will be visible immediately after the treatment, however results will be at their best 48 hours after treatment provided good after care has been followed.
Are Dermal Fillers safe?
Dermal fillers are very safe. They have been widely used for many years with over 10 million treatments carried out worldwide. They are a temporary Dermal Filler, and are therefore a far safer treatment than Permanent Fillers.
Are there any side effects with Dermal Fillers?
There is a small possibility of allergic reaction. There is usually a localised reaction at the injection sites resulting in redness and swelling lasting around 24-48 hours. Bruising is also a common side effect which can last up to a week. Depending on the area injected and the type of filler or pain control used, patients may find the procedure relatively painless to mildly uncomfortable. Treatments around the nose or lip areas are usually more painful. The obvious immediate side effect is of slight bleeding after the needle has been inserted into the skin. Other risks include mild bruising, redness and swelling that may also occur around the site of injection. These signs may take 2 – 3 days to vanish completely, especially around the lips where there is little flesh and the skin is tender. Rarely, allergic type reactions can occur after treatment with some filler. These include prolonged redness, swelling, itching and or hardness and bumps in the skin. Such signs may appear at some or all of the points of injection. Sometimes, they can last for several months or longer, but this is extremely unusual. If you have a history of cold sores in the treated area, filler injections may cause them to break out again. In these cases, your practitioner may recommend that you take an anti-viral medicine before treatment to help reduce the likelihood of an outbreak of cold sores. If you are concerned about side effects of Dermal Fillers, you can discuss this in more detail at your private consultation.
All costs will be discussed during the initial consultation, during which an individualised treatment plan will be agreed.