I think that if most of us had the choice between having surgery and not having surgery, we’d choose the latter over the former most days of the week. The question is:
How do you get the benefit of surgery without the “surgery” part?
My grandmother had a saying: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” In no place is this more true than in the world of plastic surgery.
Most of the public tends to think of plastic surgery strictly from the “surgery” standpoint. But…because you are reading this blog post, I’ll let you in on an industry secret: if you stay ahead of the aging process, you can avoid needing any surgery for YEARS (maybe decades).
How, you ask?
The answer is simple – the fountain of youth is the maintenance of youth, especially in the face – the most “public” part of our bodies. The maintenance of youth can be boiled down to three simple steps:
1. Taking care of your skin
2. Treating early dynamic wrinkles
3. Maintaining youthful volume in your face
Taking care of your skin is simple, and should be a matter of routine once you are in your 20s (and certainly beyond). If you had to ask me what three things you can do to maintain a youthful appearance of your skin as you age, I would break it down this way:
1. A moisturizing sunscreen as a matter of routine – don’t go outside without it, even for a second. SPF 30 or higher is a must. Adding an antioxidant crème before you apply sunscreen will also help prevent sun damage during the course of the day.
2. A gentle cleanser every night before bed to get rid of the grime of the day.
3. A nightly retinoid – this helps maintain the thickness and elasticity of the skin, and can prevent (or treat) fine lines and wrinkles.
I carry a line of all of these products in the office, and you can see which products are right for you by clicking here. Before starting a regiment, though, I recommend you have a detailed skin examination to select the right strength products for you (ideally, by me – but, if not, by a plastic surgeon or other skin expert near you).
Treating Early Wrinkles
Early wrinkles when you move your face (dynamic wrinkles) will predispose you to the formation of wrinkles when your face is at rest (static wrinkles). These are most common around the eyes (the Crow’s feet), on the forehead, or between the eyes. Treating these early with Botox can prevent these dynamic wrinkles from becoming present all the time (turning into static wrinkles).
Maintaining or Adding Facial Volume
Lastly, any of you who follow my blog or read my website know that volume is the key to a youthful facial appearance. As we age, we all begin to lose volume in our faces. I see a lot of younger (20-40 year old) patients with premature signs of aging of their cheeks – this shows up first as lower eyelid bags or early lines around the mouth (the “parenthesis” lines). Treating these early signs of aging with fillers in the cheeks, where the volume loss occurs, can reverse or prevent the early signs of aging in the midface. By lifting the facial soft tissues, this prevents gravity from wrecking havoc on the tissue of the lower face, which has to support the sagging upper facial tissue. In short – a little filler every once in awhile in the 20s and 30s may prevent the need for a facelift in the 40s. Volume is key to preventing and treating the signs of facial aging.
So – skin care, treating wrinkles early, and maintaining youthful volume in your face. Three simple steps – your “ounce of prevention” to prevent needing the “pound of cure” any earlier than absolutely necessary.