High cheek bones and prominent chins have usually been considered a sign of strength. Some women, as well as men, wish to have a more angular and strong looking face. The best candidate for these procedures is an individual with a long narrow or round face and/or flat cheeks. In some cases, a cheek implant can postpone the need for a face lift for several years as well as restore some lip fullness.
To begin, a sizer is used to determine the proper size and shape of your implant. Two common methods include making an incision just under the chin or inside the mouth in the gum line where the lower lip and gum meet. The method chosen will be determined based on your individual needs.
The appropriate incision is made, a pocket is created, and the implant is inserted.
Once the implant is in place and sutured, your chin may be taped to minimize swelling.
Generally this procedure is done under local anesthesia and may take between 30 minutes and one hour. It is not uncommon to combine this procedure with liposuction of the neck and/or chin where excess fatty tissue is removed. You may also consider rhinoplasty, also known as nose reshaping, to improve your profile.
To begin, a sizer is used to determine the proper size and shape of your implant. An incision is made just inside the mouth in the gum line where the upper lip and gum meet. A pocket is created and the implant is inserted. The incision is then closed with absorbable sutures.
Generally this procedure is done under local anesthesia. The cheek implant procedure may take between 30 minutes and 45 minutes.
If you are having a cheek implant combined with another procedure (such as face lift, forehead lift or eyelid surgery) the implants may be inserted through the incisions made for those procedures.
Your initial consultation is extremely important. Be prepared to provide your complete medical history and inform your surgeon of any vitamins or medications (including over-the-counter) that you are taking. Your surgeon will discuss options with you such as what type of implant will be used and where it will be placed. You should be able to speak freely with your surgeon about your goals and desired outcome.
Work: Many people are back to work approximately one to two weeks after surgery.
Swelling and Bruising: You may be swollen for the first three days or so, but both swelling and bruising are normal and should disappear after a week or two. Cheek implant patients may have bruising around the eyes, but this will fade within a few days.
Discomfort: Discomfort is moderate. Pain medication will be prescribed by your surgeon, however, if you begin to have severe pain, contact your surgeon immediately.
Recovery: If you had sutures inside the mouth, keep your head elevated for one to two weeks. Make sure all fruits and vegetables have been properly washed and stay away from raw fish (sushi), rare meat or other types of food with high amounts of bacteria. Chewing may be difficult for approximately two weeks following surgery. Your surgeon may recommend a liquid diet. Do not “play” with your incisions by picking at them with your tongue. Brushing your teeth may be difficult for several days. Sutures will dissolve after approximately ten days. If you had sutures under the chin, stitches will be removed after seven to ten days and scarring will fade within three months. It is imperative that you stay on a soft diet at least one week and minimize excessive movement of mouth or jaw area.
Results: Each patient heals and scars differently. It is vital to keep in mind that the results of this procedure vary from patient to patient. However most patients will enjoy their final result within six to twelve months.