Laughter may be good for the soul, but it’s not always so beneficial for our faces. As you age, collagen and elastin in the nasolabial folds begins to break down, eventually leaving lines around the nose and mouth that mimic the creases made when smiling. Laugh lines are also evident at the corners of your eyes. At first you may only see these tell-tale eye creases when smiling and laughing, but over time they will be present regardless of your facial expression. While everyone loves a bright smile and a happy expression, it can be distressing to develop lines that don’t reflect how youthful you feel on the inside.
If your laugh lines have you down, keep smiling! There are several ways to improve the look of existing lines and prevent new lines from cropping up—or at least slow down their development—without a face lift.
Don’t smoke. Everyone knows smoking can be damaging to your health, especially to your lungs and heart. What people don’t know is that it is also bad for your skin, and can even cause premature aging by negatively affecting the blood supply to your skin. This leads to skin laxity and an increase in wrinkles and fine lines, especially around the mouth. Quit smoking and your body will love you for it—inside and out.
Wear sun protection. You should never leave the house without wearing sunblock of at least SPF 30. If you can add a hat and sunglasses, even better. Sunblock will protect your skin from damaging, aging rays, and sunglasses will help you avoid those telltale “squint” lines around your eyes (which look just like laugh lines). Best of all, you will greatly reduce your chances of developing skin cancer.
For the softest, dewiest skin, invest in a collagen-rich moisturizer and night cream, or a treatment with retinoids to boost your skin’s thickness and elasticity. While topical treatments won’t remove nasolabial folds, they can reduce the appearance of fine lines and help your skin to look plumper and better hydrated.
“Fill ’er” up! Facial fillers like Juvederm can make a dramatic impact in improving the look of nasolabial folds. Add some Botox to reduce the appearance of fine lines and smooth out wrinkles and your face will look much more youthful and rejuvenated. Your cosmetic surgeon will choose the appropriate filler for your needs and desired goals.
Fat transfer. Taking “reusing and recycling” to the next level, a skilled cosmetic surgeon can transfer fat from somewhere that you don’t want it (thighs, lovehandles, etc) to somewhere that you do—anywhere on your face where hollowing, volume loss, or line development has become a problem. Fat transfer is all-natural with little to no discomfort and no scarring. Your cosmetic surgeon will assess your skin’s tone and condition to determine if fat transfer is a good solution for you.
Ready to start smiling with confidence again? Call Southern Surgical Arts for a complimentary personal consultation with one of our board-certified, award-winning surgeons, Dr. Carey Nease and Dr. Chad Deal. You can reach us at 423-266-3331 to schedule your appointment.