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How the Face Ages

Everyone knows that growing older takes its toll all over the body, with the unfortunate bagging, sagging and wrinkling. What you may not know is the reality of facial aging itself. In general, facial aging follows a certain pattern for most people. Check out these four facial areas and what can be done to treat aging in the face and neck.

Sagging in the Jawline
A smooth, sharply defined jawline is very youthful but, as we age, the jawbone begins to shrink and the cheek pads fall a bit lower on the face, both events causing the skin and tissues of the jaw to sag. The result? Jowls. These can be temporarily remedied with careful injections of dermal filler to lift the cheeks but, truthfully, nothing will make a huge difference short of a facelift, which will plump up the mid-face and lift the midface tissues off the jawline.

Drooping of the Eyebrows
Loosening of the forehead muscles cause deep wrinkling in the forehead and a drooping brow. While I can treat this with Dysport, long-term improvement is obtained with a forehead or brow lift.

Larger Nose
Aging causes the bones in the face to shrink. This includes the jaw, cheekbones, and even the eye sockets. You may think your nose is growing as you age, and it might grow a bit due to enlarging cartilage (ears do the same), it’s more likely that, as the facial features shrink, the nose looks larger. A rhinoplasty can adjust the shape of the nose as the tip droops with age or, as a temporary measure to judge the effect, I can inject a filler into the tip of the nose to lift it. Beyond these options, a facelift and/or rhinoplasty would give the longest lasting improvements.

Thinning Lips
Our lips are full and firm during our youth. Most of us start to see vertical lines in the upper lip as the first sign of aging in that area, combined with a lack of volume. Although these vertical lines are often called “smoker’s lines,” they can develop whether you smoke or not (but likely sooner if you do!). Both the lips and the vertical lines can be treated with fillers such as Restylane, fat transfer, or surgical lip enhancement that requires incisions at the sides of the mouth and insertion of permanent material into the lips. I choose not to perform that procedure because the lips can become distorted with age, and my patients are quite happy with the temporary results of fillers.

Aging will happen to all of us. If you want to look your best, at any age, see me in consultation at my Hewlett, Long Island, NY plastic surgery practice. I have solutions that will help you look younger, not “overdone,” and that will boost your self confidence and happiness with your appearance. Call my office for a consultation or complete the contact form on my website.

To Your Health and Beauty,
Zachary Gerut, MD, FACS
Board Certified NY Plastic Surgeon

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