Sagging Neck and Jowls? A Customized Plan Is in Order
We never cease to be struck by the unique nature of each patient. That’s one reason we all love our jobs—we have the pleasure of designing a strategy that’s just right for every individual.
When it comes to facial rejuvenation, it’s not unusual for patients to be perplexed about which treatment makes the most sense. This can be particularly true for men and women whose neck and jowls are the primary issues. Non-invasive treatment? Neck lift? Facelift? New York patients often come to us with many questions.
While we assess each patient carefully and make notes including technical terms like submental fat, platysma and SMAS, our patients talk with us in plain language about the effects of time, the environment and genetics on their neck. If you’re thinking about facial aging and possible solutions, here’s some information from those discussions that may help you consider the nuances involved.
We see many patients who are fed up with the look of their double chin. Oftentimes these men and women appear relatively youthful but have a sagging fat pad (submental fat) courtesy of genetics. If the skin retains a good measure of elasticity, they may be good candidates for non-invasive treatment with Kybella.
Key to satisfaction is a plastic surgeon’s ability to determine whether you’re the right candidate, and to target the injections precisely. We were one of the first cosmetic surgery practices to use Kybella in New York—you can trust that we will be honest with you about whether this option is a good choice.
When neck cords are the main problem, the platysma muscle that runs down the front of the neck has separated, leading to prominent vertical bands. Most patients with this issue also suffer to some degree from sagging skin, and the result is—you guessed it—the dreaded “turkey neck.”
If you feel an aging neck impacts your appearance, you’re in good company. Neck skin is delicate, and the area takes a beating from sun and other environmental conditions. You may discover that a neck lift is the best solution, including platysmaplasty to repair the neck muscle combined with lifting and tightening excess skin. Again, choosing a plastic surgeon with the skill to assess you properly will ensure that you receive a recommendation that will achieve your goals.
With the passing of time, gravity continually pulls the muscles and fat of the lower face downward, while skin gradually gives up its ability to hold tissues in place. The result is jowls that can mar the appearance of a once-youthful jawline.
When patients are bothered by a soft, sagging set of jowls, often the best solution is a facelift. New York patients are sometimes surprised by this recommendation, but smoothing and tightening the lower face and upper neck is just what a traditional facelift is for. We elevate the SMAS—the underlying foundation of facial tissues known medically as the superficial musculoaponeurotic system—then re-drape the skin. This technique resolves the problem of descending facial structures without tension and achieves a natural looking result.
What Customization Really Means
Facial rejuvenation plans we create depend on many factors and nuances. For instance, it’s not enough to know there’s excess submental fat; a plastic surgeon needs to determine exactly where the fat is located to develop a successful treatment plan. Liposuction should often be a component of a neck lift, for example, but the surgeon must be skilled and conservative in its use. Too much fat removal can result in a “skeletonized” look after surgery.
In addition, many patients seeking a more youthful appearance for the lower face benefit most from a combination approach. For the men and women we work with in New York, facelift surgery along with a neck lift is sometimes the best way to lift tissues back where they used to be. In fact, when you list the possible options—facelift, neck lift and non-invasive treatment such as Kybella, fillers, fat transfer and even a chemical peel or microdermabrasion—you begin to see why consulting a highly-experienced plastic surgeon with many techniques and tools to offer is essential.
We welcome you to contact us!