Eventually, aging happens to all of us, and typically the most noticeable effect is the impact it has on our skin. As our bodies produce less collagen (the protein that gives skin the strength and firmness it had in our youth), gravity takes over and skin begins to sag. But contrary to what many of our patients at Dermatology Associates of Atlanta (DAA) initially believe, plastic surgery is not the only way to get firmer skin. Advancements in medical technology have led to several effective ways to non-surgically tighten skin, and while a facelift can still produce significant results, the treatments below can help you turn back the clock when surgery isn’t the right choice for you.
Ultherapy® Skin Tightening
How it works: A treatment begins with ultrasound imaging that is used to map out the desired area for a more precise result. Then, the ultrasound energy is directed at specific depths within the skin. This encourages the body to create more collagen, causing the skin to gradually lift and tighten. Each Ultherapy® session takes between 30 and 90 minutes depending on the area(s) being treated, and while most patients only need one session, the treatment plan varies from person to person.
What areas it treats: Neck, chest (décolletage), under the chin, and around the brow line.
Recovery time: Because the ultrasound energy doesn’t harm the surface skin, no downtime is needed, and most patients can return to their daily activities immediately after treatment. Results gradually improve for 2-3 months after the procedure.
Infini™ Facial Rejuvenation
How it works: Infini™ promotes collagen production by combining micro-needling (using tiny needles to activate the healing process) with radio frequency (RF) energy, which is applied to the treatment zones by the micro-needles. Based on your medical needs, treatment areas, and cosmetic concerns, we can customize the number of treatments you’ll need.
What areas it treats: Options like varying handpieces and adjustable depths allow Infini™ to treat all areas of the face and make it safe for all skin types.
Recovery time: By using extremely small needles that allow much of the skin to remain unharmed, Infini™ minimizes downtime, although the recovery period varies depending on your treatment depth and other factors.
Fractionated Lasers: SmartXide DOT™ and Fraxel®
How they work: While their specifications are a bit different, both the DOT™ laser and the Fraxel® laser send tiny columns of light into the skin to promote collagen production. The treatments are rather brief, typically lasting only 20-30 minutes.
What areas they treat: Generally, these lasers can treat the face, neck, hands, arms, and neckline.
Recovery time: Every patient varies, and so does the extensiveness of their treatment. Some patients require little to no downtime, while other patients may need up to a week. Schedule a consultation at DAA to discuss what type of treatment plan can meet your aesthetic goals.
How it works: Réjuvapen® uses time-tested micro-needling to boost collagen production, while harnessing technology to make the treatments safer and more precise than its predecessor, the dermal roller. Because it doesn’t use lasers, Réjuvapen® is also safe for all skin types.
What areas it treats: The procedure can be effective for many areas of the face, and for some patients, can also improve the appearance of stretch marks elsewhere on the body.
Recovery time: Each patient’s required healing time depends on the details of their treatment, but there is generally little to no downtime needed after Réjuvapen® treatments.
SlimLipo™ Laser-Assisted Liposuction
How it works: SlimLipo™ is unique from the skin treatments above because it supplements liposuction, rather than serving as a procedure of its own, and because it can be used for nearly any area of the body. The laser breaks down fat cells in the treated area while also building collagen, so that the skin becomes firmer as it adjusts to the newly slimmed contours after liposuction.
What areas it treats: Most areas that can be treated with liposuction can benefit from the added help of SlimLipo™, including the abdomen, hips, thighs, buttocks, arms, and neck.
Recovery time: SlimLipo™ is part of a surgical procedure, so it requires downtime like other cosmetic surgeries. Depending on your medical needs and how substantial your treatment is, recovery time ranges from a few days to a few weeks.
Certainly there is no shortage of treatments that can help your skin become firmer and more youthful, but the question is, which procedure is the right one for you? Each option has many details and pros and cons that should be considered, so schedule a consultation with us to discuss your needs and goals and to receive a recommendation from one of our skilled professionals. Or, to stay up-to-date on the latest news and specials from DAA, follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.