Have you ever encountered someone whose skin suddenly looks more supple and smooth? If you’re wondering what their secret is, there’s a good chance that it comes down to dermal fillers – a popular but often misunderstood method of getting rid of wrinkles and lines on your skin.
In this blog, we’ll go over some of the most important things to know about this treatment, and how you can decide if they’re right for you.
Facts About Dermal Fillers
1. What Are Dermal Fillers?
So, first things first: many people confuse dermal fillers with Botox, but they’re not the same thing. Rather, they are injectable fillers, approved by Health Canada, that smooth out lines and wrinkles – most commonly on the face, jawline, or neck areas. As the name suggests, these fillers are injected beneath the skin using a needle.
Fillers can made of three different components. The first type consist of hyaluronic acid, which is naturally produced in our bodies and already exists in our skin and cartilage. These generally last between 6-18 months, and they are the most common type (you may even recognize name from skin care products, where they are often used to retain moisture and make skin hydrated and full). Two popular fillers we carry at our clinic, Juvederm and Teoxane, have hyaluronic bases.
The second type is poly-L-lactic acid, or PLLA, which is a biodegradable material commonly used to make dissolvable sutures. These can last up to two years. The third type is known as calcium hydroxylapatite, a dissolvable mineral found in our bones. This kind of filler can last up to 18 months.
2. Which Dermal Filler to Try
Knowing which filler to try depends on what kind of look you are hoping to achieve, so it’s best to see a professional and seek their opinion. For example, if you are adding to a bone, like around the jaw, you want a thick filler that’s hard to push through the needle – it should be mostly rigid, almost “attaching” to the bone. But if you’re going under the eyes or around the cheeks, it’s a more flexible area of the face and you don’t want a hard lump there. Thinner fillers would be better!
3. Why People Get Dermal Fillers
While there are many answers to this question, the most common one is that people want to look their best. Patients come in complaining about looking tired, or that their skin is sagging, or they’re unhappy with the wrinkles and lines in the mirror, but they don’t want to turn to surgery. Dermal fillers are a relatively simple and very quick way to add volume and smooth out wrinkles and fine lines.
4. Precautions with Dermal Fillers
It goes without saying, but safety should always be your top priority with any procedure – medical aesthetics or otherwise. Because the process involves injections, there is potential for infection, cross-contamination, or even human error. Education, training and experience play a big part in a successful outcome! Ensure that the people performing the procedure know what they’re doing, and that the location is reputable and safe. If you have doubts, ask clarifying questions or find a location that you’re more satisfied with.
5. What to Expect After Getting Fillers
Every person’s body and reactions are different, with some people experiencing no symptoms and some feeling them more severely. The most common are bruising, swelling, pain, or localized redness, all of which go away in one to two weeks. Less frequently, some people experience raised bumps – called granulomas – which can be treated with injections.
Although rare, filler can be accidentally injected into a blood vessel, which can lead to a vascular occlusion, a.k.a. a blocked vessel. This is a medical emergency, and you should call your provider immediately if you have increasing pain or bluish discolouration at the injection site. This is why taking the right precautions and seeking experienced clinicians is so important.
6. Who Should Avoid Getting Fillers
In general, there are not many people who can’t get fillers – at least, not on the basis of skin type, body composition, or overall health. Our main recommendations? Don’t get fillers if you’re having dental work (or anything dentist-related) done that same day, as your facial muscles will be sore and tender. Pregnant and breastfeeding women should also avoid fillers, just to be safe in the case of unforeseen complications.
7. The Cost of Dermal Fillers
This will depend on the clinic you go to and the education & experience of the staff, the area of the country you are in, the brand of filler you use, and how much filler is required. The average price ranges from about $250 for a half syringe to about $800 for a full one. Before committing to the procedure, be sure to ask about total costs.
8. Are Dermal Fillers Permanent?
So, let’s say you go ahead with the process, expecting great results – but instead, you’re not happy at all. While this is quite rare – after all, expertly injected filler is hardly noticeable and actually looks more natural – it does happen.
The good news is that if you’re disappointed with how you look, don’t worry. In almost all cases, you can have the filler either dissolved or added to, in order to create a better-looking result. Never be afraid to be honest with your clinician – because we’re here to help you look your best!
Dermal Fillers in Calgary, Alberta
Are you curious about dermal fillers near downtown Calgary? Do you still have more questions for a qualified medical esthetician? We’d be happy to guide you through the process and help you decide if dermal fillers are a good fit for your beauty goals. Contact us at our boutique in Calgary’s southwest Mission neighbourhood (just south of 17 Ave) to find out more!