Plastic Surgery | Face-Lift vs. Ultherapy – Which is Best for You? Procedures That Help You Put on Your Best Face

Face-Lift vs. Ultherapy – Which is Best for You? Procedures That Help You Put on Your Best Face

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Though the face-lift remains a popular way to smooth skin sagging and help create a more youthful look, the number of facelifts between 2000 and 2009 actually decreased. Why? Mostly because of new, alternative treatments that can get you great results without requiring incisions. One of these alternatives is called the «lunchtime face-lift,» or «ultherapy.» Might this be a better option for you?

What Happens To Skin's Natural Support?

Over time, natural aging, exposure to pollutants, sun damage, and more all contribute to the gradual breakdown of the skin’s internal structure. One of the main problems is that the production of collagen slows down. Collagen is a kind of protein that works with elastin to give skin its strength and firmness. As levels decrease, the skin starts to sag, wrinkle, and look older. Cosmetic procedures—whether a face-lift, ultherapy, or other technique—seek to help firm up, tighten, and improve the appearance of skin.

What Is a Face-Lift?

A face-lift (also called «rhytidectomy»), is a surgical procedure designed to improve the visible signs of aging in the face and neck. There are several techniques by which a surgeon can perform the lift, but all usually involve the contraction and realignment of facial and neck skin, and in some instances, the removal of excess fat deposits. Skin-only face-lifts address the surface level of the face, while intermediate depth face-lifts go to a deeper level, achieving improvement from just above the bones of the face.

What Is Ultherapy?

Ultherapy involves the use of ultrasound technology to stimulate the deep layers of the skin (called the Superficial Muscular aponeuroticSystem or SMAS) to generate a tightening effect. During surgery, doctors typically manipulated the SMAS to create a lasting lift. With ultherapy, however, the doctor can stimulate this deeper layer without having to make incisions. «When the ultrasound device hits the SMAS area,» says Dr. Rayham of RR Plastix, «it burns small holes through it without actually burning the skin. The outer layer of the skin remains unaffected. As a result, the SMAS area contracts and creates new collagen during the healing process to generate tightness. We can create all this in one pass.» The procedure can be done in the office, and takes about 40 minutes to an hour depending on how many zones need to be treated. A patient will see some immediate improvement,then after about three to four months, will see significant improvement.

Which Treatment Is Better?

Both of these treatments are effective at taking years off your face. The question is, which one is better for you? An appointment with a professional like Dr. Rayham can help the best approach to reach your goals. Consider as well the following questions:

  • How much sagging skin do you want to remove? Ultherapy is best for those who are seeing some sagging and drooping in the skin, whereas a face-lift may be better for those with deep sagging in the midface or loss of muscle tone in the lower face that has created jowls.
  • Are you okay with surgery? Just like any surgery, a face-lift requires anesthesia and significant recovery time. Ultherapy, on the other hand, can be done over your lunch hour and you can go right back to work.
  • What kind of results are you looking for? If you’re looking for a dramatic change in your appearance, a face-lift may be best for you. If you’re looking for a subtler tightening and lifting, you may be very happy with ultherapy. How much do you want to spend? Since ultherapy doesn’t require surgery, it will be more economical than a face-lift.
  • What are you expecting? Neither procedure guarantees you’ll look like you did when you were 20, but both are likely to provide you with noticeable changes in your appearance.

Dr. Rayham offers a range of treatments from which you can choose, depending on your goals. For more information, call the RR Plastix/ New York Plastic Surgery Center. Double Board Certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and the American Board of Surgery, Dr. Rayham can answer any questions you may have. Call 1-877-582-0400, or visit the website at www.rrplastix.com.

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