With the growing popularity of sharing personal stories of cosmetic procedures on the Internet and the stigma of openly discussing these procedures disappearing, a dialogue has opened between everyone from teens to millennials, and even celebrities. Over time, it has led to a steady increase in cosmetic procedures, especially lip injections.
Lots of young adults have sought out the “plump pout” that celebrities like Kylie Jenner and Iggy Azalea sport. They give the credit for their improved lip line to dermal fillers, also known as lip injections. Dermal fillers can be used on many areas of the face—the lips being one of the most popular injection sites.
The most popular fillers used for lip injections are Juvéderm and Restylane. Both of these fillers are composed of hyaluronic acid, which is a natural substance found within the human body. The fact that these fillers are made of a natural substance makes its easier for your body to adjust to it and break it down. Having said that, injections are still a cosmetic procedure and you need to prepare yourself for the changes and adjustments that come with any cosmetic procedure, surgical and non-surgical alike.
What to Expect Before, During, and After Your Procedure
Before Your Procedure:
It cannot be stressed enough how important it is to do proper research on your desired procedure. Many patients come in thinking they will look exactly like someone else, such as their favorite celebrity or a friend with plump lips they adore. Each person has a unique facial structure, so it is not realistic to expect to look like an exact replica of someone else. Also, prospective patients should not only perform research on their desired procedure, but their prospective doctor as well. It is incumbent to find a doctor who is well trained and specializes in the procedure of their choice. With today’s technology and all the social media resources, there are many outlets to research doctors and read real patient reviews. I recommend utilizing RealSelf, a platform where doctors can answer patient questions and allows users to get expert advice about a wide variety of procedures. In addition to RealSelf, which is a great source of information for anything related to cosmetic surgery, other platforms such as Healthgrades and Vitals are great resources that aid in finding experienced and credentialed doctors.
I recommend stopping certain medications and supplements before facial injections to limit swelling and bruising. The most common medications and supplements patients should avoid before lip injections are fish oil, vitamin E, multivitamin, aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen.
During Your Procedure:
When a patient goes in for a procedure, he/she should listen carefully to the doctor’s instructions. The doctor should provide the following information:
- Limitations post-injection
- Possible side-effects
- Healing time
If, for some reason, the physician does not provide this information, be sure to ask. Being as educated and informed about the procedure as possible will help to make the process go smoothly.
At my office, I use a blunt-tipped cannula to do the injections; this is a needleless tool that allows for a more comfortable, less-invasive injection. It’s similar to a needle injector but the end is rounded and not sharp. The only time a needle is to make a tiny hole in the skin to allow the blunt cannula to go underneath it. The end result produces less swelling and discomfort than a needle injection.
Having said that, sometimes swelling and lip inflation will occur, especially the day after the procedure, as the body adjusts to the filler. So be prepared, as that is a possibility.
After the Procedure:
After the procedure, patients should refrain from wearing lipstick or anything that may irritate the lip area. Patients may return to normal activities, but it is recommended to avoid strenuous activity for 24 after injections to avoid excessive swelling. If there is swelling, it should subside within a few days, and the final product should appear within one to two weeks. Some patients also feel bumps in their lips after injection. This is a common side effect and should not be a cause for concern, unless the bumps are painful.
Lip injections usually last for about six months. However, there is a new treatment coming out in October of 2016 called Juvéderm Volbella. It is an injectable specifically for the lips, and it is supposed to look more natural, reduce swelling and discomfort during the injection, and last for up to one year.
If a patient experiences any side effects that resemble extreme swelling, itching, or infection, the patient should contact their physician immediately.
Schedule a Consultation with a Double-Board Certified Facial Plastic Surgeon
Dr. Jonathan Kulbersh is a double board-certified facial plastic surgeon with an expertise in lip enhancement procedures. To schedule a consultation at Carolina Facial Plastics and learn more about the benefits of lip injections, please call (704) 842-3644 or fill out the online appointment request form.
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