There are many options available in the Dallas-Fort Worth area for skin tightening treatments to help reduce the appearance of sagging skin, including surgical face-lifts, noninvasive skin tightening, facial exercises, topical creams and even devices that promise to give you back the face of your youth. But, why does this happen, and what actually works? How successful or how long your skin tightening treatment lasts can vary. So, how do you know which option is best for you?
Why does skin sag?
Collagen and elastin create the foundation for your youthful skin appearance. They support the skin and allow it to stretch and snap back into place. But, as you age, these foundational elements slow down in production and your skin loses its natural elasticity. The results are sagging skin. But, age isn’t the only thing that can impact collagen and elastin health. UV rays from the sun can also damage your skin and reduce elasticity. This can also cause your skin to ripple and reduces smoothness. Other causes of sagging skin include:
- Significant and sudden weight loss
- Rare disorders — like Ehlers-Danlos syndrome
6 Ways to Tighten Sagging Facial Skin
1. Topical Creams & Lotions
There are many topical creams and lotions available that claim to firm and tighten the skin, but to see real results, you must use these products for extended periods. The majority of these products also only work for very mild cases of sagging skin, so if your situation is more serious, you may be out of luck and out of money spent on products not suited for you.
2. Facial Exercises
A study from Northwestern University revealed that performing specific facial exercises increases the size of the facial muscles, which in turn helps to reduce the appearance of sagging skin. Unfortunately, to see results, individuals must perform the exercises several times a day for several weeks. Another negative about this type of treatment is that making the same facial expressions repeatedly can lead to the development of wrinkles.
3. Surgical Face-Lifts
The surgical face-lift is an excellent option for individuals who want to see long-term skin-tightening results or have severe sagging skin. But, there are some drawbacks to consider when thinking about having this procedure. The surgical face-lift is invasive, requires general anesthesia, may mean staying in the hospital, and has the risk of infection or other complications of surgery.
4. Heat Treatments
Surgery isn’t right for everyone, and because it comes with a myriad of risks, most people choose to go the non-invasive route. One such option is laser or other heat treatments. Laser resurfacing treatments can stimulate new collagen growth. The drawback is that this procedure is only appropriate for minor or moderate sagging. Other heat treatments may include a Microfocused Ultrasound (MFU) procedure. This procedure uses ultrasound waves to treat the damaged skin tissue. As such, it’s only appropriate if your skin has been severely sun damaged, but results can be seen in a few months and may continue to improve over time.
Another non-invasive option includes dermal fillers and injections to help plump up your skin and improve collagen production. BOTOX is the most popular solution for minor and moderate sagging, but other options such as Restylane and Radiesse can help with minor wrinkles and sagging. Injectables are not a permanent solution however, as they only last three months to a year — depending on which injection you receive.
6. Radiofrequency Treatments
Thermage treatments are an excellent option to tighten loose skin and smooth lines, wrinkles, and creases on the face. Thermage works using radiofrequency energy to induce collagen production to pull the skin tighter. It is best used in cases of mild to moderate sagging wrinkles and sagging. Since Thermage is minimally invasive, there is no downtime or anesthesia required, no hospital stay, and no risk of complications. Results are seen quickly and continue to develop over time. Thermage can also be used in areas beyond the face to treat sagging skin in the midsection, knees, and upper arms.
Another radiofrequency option is the ThermaDot procedure which combines Thermage and SmartXide Dot (a laser treatment). This procedure is minimally invasive and also penetrates deeply into the tissue to promote collagen production and tighten the skin. This procedure is best for moderate to severe cases and, like Thermage, results are seen quickly and develop over time. Innovations Medical offers Thermage and ThermaDot procedures in our Dallas and Fort Worth practice locations.
Learn more about non-invasive skin tightening and the benefits of radiofrequency treatments by calling Innovations Medical today at (214) 643-8665.