You’ve lost 50, 75, or more than 100 pounds, either through diet and exercise or with the help of bariatric surgery. While you’re thrilled about your new weight when you step on the scale, there are often after effects of weight loss that no one really told you about.
Depending on how much weight you lose and how elastic your skin is, you might be left with a considerable amount of loose skin. It’s common for people to expect that extra skin around their hips, abdomen, and thighs, areas where they might have lost a dramatic amount of fat. But, that sagging skin can also be in the area of your face and neck. You might start your weight loss journey looking as though you’re in your 30’s and end it looking as if you’re in your late 50’s.
Fortunately, there are ways to look great after considerable weight loss. If you’re concerned about the signs of aging on your face after you’ve dropped the pounds, it’s worth discussing your options with a facial plastic surgeon who specializes in the aging face.
Reduce Sagging Skin After Weight Loss
As you get older, the skin around your face and neck becomes less supple and elastic, meaning it doesn’t bounce back as it once did. The tissue and muscle beneath the skin become weaker, too, and less tight and toned. A loss of volume in the facial area (which can be sped up by weight loss) also contributes to the skin becoming looser and less toned.
It can be disheartening to lose so much weight and to be happy about the number you see on the scale, but unhappy about the way your weight loss has affected your appearance. One way to look as young and as great as you feel after weight loss is to have a facelift or another type of skin and tissue tightening surgery.
During a facelift, a surgeon tightens the tissue beneath the surface of the skin, lifting it and the skin on top up. Extra loose skin is cut away, as well. The goal of the surgery is to create a more defined cheek and jawline and to minimize any creases or areas of droopiness. While the surgery is effective at reducing creases and sagging, it doesn’t do much to alter fine lines and won’t improve the texture of the skin.
Depending on your specific case, you might benefit from a facelift on its own or combined with a neck lift, which can help reduce the appearance of a “turkey neck” and double chin, or combined with a brow lift, with focuses on reducing drooping and sagging in the forehead or by the eyebrows.
Restore Volume After Weight Loss
After you’ve worked hard to lose a fair amount of volume, restoring it after weight loss might seem a bit strange. But, sometimes losing lots of weight meanings losing volume from an area where you’d rather not. For example, full cheeks are often associated with youth, as older people tend to have lean, gaunt faces.
The shape your cheeks and chin form when you’re younger is known as the triangle of youth — the cheeks are wider than the jawline. But, as you get older, the triangle flips over, so that the jaw is more likely to be wider than the cheeks.
If you’ve lost some volume from your face as a result of shedding some weight, you have several options for restoring that volume, including temporary fixes and more permanent options. One option is Juvederm Voluma, an injectable filler made from hyaluronic acid. Voluma instantly adds lift and volume to the cheeks, and provides results that last for up to two years.
Cheek implants offer a longer-lasting solution but require surgery to insert. Depending on your specific concerns, you might consider having cheek augmentation performed at the same time as a facelift to reduce loose skin while restoring volume to the facial area.
Preparing for Surgery After Weight Loss
There are some things to consider before rushing into any sort of rejuvenating facial plastic surgery after losing weight. First, you want to be sure your weight has stabilized. Losing more weight after your surgery can undo some of your results or mean that you need a second procedure later on.
Your health is also an important consideration. You’ll want to discuss any long-term conditions you might have with your facial plastic surgeon and focus on getting them under control or stabilized before your surgery.
It’s also important that you have realistic expectations when it comes to the results of your surgery. Your surgeon will discuss what a procedure can and can’t do for you, and help you determine if it’s really what you want.
A facial plastic surgeon at the Naderi Center, Dr. Jessica Kulak specializes in procedures that rejuvenate the aging face. If you’ve lost weight and aren’t happy about the changes your weight loss has made to your face and neck, speak with Dr. Kulak to learn more about your options. To schedule a consultation with her at the office in Virginia, call (703) 481-0002. To make an appointment with her in Maryland, call (301) 222-2020 today.