Cheek procedures are among some of the less known facial plastic surgeries out there. However, reshaping the cheek (or malar) region can go a long way in rejuvenating a person’s appearance or achieving their goal look. While some may be uncomfortable with very prominent or wide cheekbones, others are unhappy with a narrow or gaunt look. Our board-certified plastic surgeons in Los Angeles offer both cheek augmentation and reduction to help our patients get the look that they want.
Cheek augmentation can be used to increase the projection of a person’s cheekbone by adding volume to areas which may be recessed or ﬂat. If you have already seen before and after photos of cheek augmentation and have liked the results, then you may think of undergoing this plastic procedure.
The area for cheek volume improvement can be of two types: malar or submalar. They are given these names based on the area of the face where they are placed. The malar area is located in the upper cheek region. If the cheekbones are strongly expressed and high, the face often has a desirable outlook with high and attractive cheekbones. The submalar area is located slightly lower, and can oftentimes be affected by sagging skin as you get older.
There are several cheek augmentation techniques available—both surgical and non-surgical. We will carefully examine your facial structure and factor in your expectations to determine if either surgical or nonsurgical treatment is recommended. Additionally, if a treatable cause is present it should be identified.
Surgical cheek augmentation is intended to emphasize the cheeks on a person’s face. To augment the cheeks, we may perform fat grafting to increase the volume of the cheek. This autologous fat transfer (also called Fat Grafting), which is sometimes considered a more permanent option. This method takes donor fat cells from other areas of your body and injects them into the cheek to increase the size of the cheeks. The obvious upside is that you gain the cheeks that you want while losing a bit of stubborn fat elsewhere. Cheek augmentation is commonly combined with other procedures, such as a facelift or chin augmentation to maintain harmony throughout all your facial features.
For the nonsurgical method of cheek augmentation, we will administer injections to the cheekbones, providing a less invasive and less expensive approach. Dermal fillers, such as Restylane or Juvéderm, are used to augment the cheek area with hyaluronic acid and can be injected into the cheek area to add or restore facial volume. The downside of filler injection is that you will need to have the procedure repeated every 1-2 years depending on the type of filler. Many people still prefer the non-surgical approach because of the lack of downtime or a recovery period.
If symmetry among facial features is part of your goal, we may also recommend facial implants to augment other areas of your face as well. It’s important to remember that all of our faces are asymmetric to some degree, so your results may not be completely symmetric. The goal of the procedure is to create balance and proportion.
Some people have prominent cheek bones that can disrupt their overall facial balance. Many patients are often very self-conscious of a widened face. While well-developed cheekbones with good forward projection are highly valued by those of European descent, some people of Asian descent, born with particularly full faces, prefer a slimmer appearance from both front and profile views.
There are several techniques for reshaping the malar region. With very wide and prominent cheekbones, breaking and resettling the bone in a reduced position will result in a narrower appearance. With moderate prominence of the cheekbones, shaving of the malar bone may be all you need. This is done through a small incision inside the mouth. There is no need for plates and wires and the bone heals in this new position.
Two surgical approaches can be employed to decrease cheek size: bone reduction and buccal fat removal.
Surgery on the bone has been made safer and more predictable due to improvements in surgical technology. Three-dimensional CT scanners emitting decreased amounts of radiation can be used to show not only the bone, but also the position of muscles, fat, and even tiny nerves for a more complete analysis during the planning of your procedure.
At Wave Plastic Surgery, our plastic surgeons can also implement the use of endoscopes with your cheek reduction to allow for much smaller incisions, less scarring and swelling, and a faster recovery.
Whether you’re looking to increase the size of your cheeks or just the opposite, our plastic surgeons are trained to provide you with the treatments that you need to achieve your goal look. Give us a call today to schedule your free cheek augmentation or reduction consultation in Los Angeles.
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