Before the aches and pains in your knees and other joints begin to remind you that you’re not as young as you were, your mirror is likely to highlight the need to do something about the fine lines on your face that are usually the earliest signs of advancing years. While the high cost of plastic surgery used to mean that most women were forced to resort to using heavy foundation make-up to conceal those signs, today, dermal filler injections offer an alternative anti-ageing option that is both effective and affordable.
There can be no doubt that fine lines around the eyes and mouth, or a furrowed brow tend to reveal one’s age, and may often occur prematurely. Conversely, a smooth skin texture can serve to create the impression that an older woman is far younger than her years. As we age, the production of collagen, which makes up about 80% of the dermis and is responsible for its strength, gradually reduces. So too, does the production of elastin, the protein that enables it to stretch. Together with the effects of sunshine and wear and tear, the result is fine lines or wrinkles, and the need for some dermal filler injections, Botox™ treatments, or both.
Botox™ is the best known of several products containing botulinum toxin which, when injected beneath the skin, acts to temporarily relax the tiny, contracted muscles responsible for crow’s feet and furrow lines. These treatments, however, are generally more effective for the correction of shallow imperfections. Where more volume is required, for example, to flatten out deeper furrows, for nose corrections, to restore the appearance of sunken cheeks, or to plump up thin lips, the more effective choice will certainly be a course of dermal filler injections.
The materials used for this purpose vary, as do their precise action and the longevity of their effects. One may, for instance, inject synthesised collagen, which will slowly be reabsorbed within 3 to 4 months or, instead, employ a substance such as poly-l-lactic acid, which acts to stimulate the production of natural collagen by the dermal cells and provides a fix that could last for a full two years. The intermediates between the two, hyaluronic acid and calcium hydroxyapatite, are both popular options, offering results that generally tend to remain evident for 4 to 6 months and about 18 months respectively, before the need for further dermal filler injections should become too apparent.
While, currently, the use of PMMA or polymethylmethacrylate beads offers the only permanent solution, it is considered by many medical aesthetic specialists to be the least safe option and, consequently, it is one not all may be willing to offer.