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Facial Aging Is More Than Skin Deep

Facial Aging Is More Than Skin Deep

How The Face Changes As We Get Older

Prior to the digital age, the rise of digital photography particularly, sagging skin was blamed as the most prominent cause of facial aging. In the last 20 years this misconception amongst the plastic surgery community has been effectively dispelled.

When computerized imaging came into the scene, a plastic surgeon by the name of Val Lambros began to collect photos of his patients from throughout their lives. He carefully studied these photos, which spanned across decades. Making sure that the pictures were similar in position and distance from their subject, he was able to measure how fixed points on the face such as moles or scars would sag or move over time through a software program.

He was surprised to see that there was not any movement of those fixed points over time, contrary to what had been widely accepted in the plastic surgery community. Dr. Lambros’ findings prompted the medical community to look more closely into what truly caused the appearance of aging. What was found was that the structure of the bones in the face and the locations of facial fat were changing along with the skin.

Following Dr. Lambros’ research, studies have shown that as we age the bones surrounding the eye (the orbital bone) enlarge. This makes the eye appear smaller and the lines in the skin around it to appear deeper. As the soft tissues in the face begin to deplete, it can expose the rim of the orbital bone, and “bags” of the lower eyelid tend to be revealed. These bags can grow with time and further tissue loss. In some faces, the brows sag and produce an accumulation of skin in the upper eyelid. The eyes also age as the outer corner becomes more of a rounded, blunted curve, which makes the eye appear tired.

In addition, the cheekbone appears to resorb, moving backwards over time. The mandible, or the jawbone, was also discovered to widen. These elements, in combination with the deflation of facial tissue, can create a gaunt appearance. Once these discoveries were made, plastic surgeons realized that tightening skin wasn’t the sole solution to restoring a more youthful appearance.

Now, much attention has been turned to carrying out techniques and procedures to reverse some of the changes in fat deposits and loss of volume. Rarely are changes to the bones carried out, as it requires significantly more exposure, recovery and risk. Adding volume through fat transfer is an option and contributes to more natural looking results. A recent article suggested that across the country, 85-90% of plastic surgeons routinely utilize fat grafting to most facelift procedures. Fillers may also aid in restoring volume to certain areas of the face. It can be used to reduce the presence of marionette lines around the mouth or lines about the eyes, and can help regain a more youthful appearance.

If you are considering facial plastic surgery or any age reduction treatments, it’s best to recieve careful consultation of all options to help determine the appropriate course of treatment. Contact us today to schedule your initial consultation!

  • Lisa Turner
    Lisa Turner

    Hands down this is the most amazing plastic surgery office! No haggling and Dr. Jacobs will not perform a surgery if the scar exceeds the benefit. His words exactly which is exactly what I want to know ahead of time not after the surgery is done. Dr. Jacobs is a phenomenal surgeon and I trust him 150%. Felecia his nurse is as wonderful as Dr. Jacobs!!

  • I visited Dr. Johnathan Jacob's Office to see about getting a Lipoma removed from my upper left shoulder. After meeting Dr. Jacob's he discussed with me what needed to be done to remove it. I was very happy with the surgery and how good a surgeon he is. I was very satisfied with the procedure and the outcome. I was happy with his staff also they took good care of me. ???

  • Karolyn Lea
    Karolyn Lea

    I am very pleased with Dr. Alspaugh and staff. I appreciate his honesty and his ability to give good advice. He was very professional and made sure I was comfortable. I’m looking forward to working hard and encouraged to start on this new journey to improve my look and my health...all in one. He’s so amazing.

  • Charity Wilder
    Charity Wilder

    Felicia is the absolute BEST. If you enjoy the feeling when people say, “You look too young to have a 19 year old.” Then book an appointment with Felicia immediately. She’s the sweetest human being on the planet and excellent at her job.

  • Love the staff!! They are so friendly and take time with you to really listen to your needs. Highly recommend!!

  • Julie Jackson
    Julie Jackson

    'My experiences at Associates in Plastic Surgery have all been outstanding. I have been a patient for more than 10 years. Dr. John Alspaugh is pleasant, patient and very informative. He listens to you and your concerns. I am always very happy with the results. Cheryl, his nurse is amazing! Go see her! She is sweet and knowledgeable. She eases my nerves and answers all of my questions and concerns. She even makes me laugh. Wonderful, caring staff.