First of all, we need to answer a few questions:
- What is a cheek implant
- Why are cheek implants needed
What is a cheek implant?
There are a few different types of cheek implants, Malar and submalar. Malar means cheek bone, and submalar means just underneath the cheek bone.
Most patients who are interested in malar cheek implants are interested in augmenting, or building up their cheek bones. They feel like their face is too skinny, or they lack definition of their cheek bones.
Most patients interested in submalar implants are people that have a skinny gaunt face,thin face (common patient: runners) or those with an aging face.
Both types of cheek implants are placed in the operating room, under general anesthesia. The down time is about 1 week, and there is minor swelling that comes down with time.
Three alternatives to cheek implants
The first alternative, and most common, is fillers. There are several different types of fillers used, and most are injected in the office with local anesthesia. There’s virtually no downtime and the results are immediate. The downside to them is that they results are not permanent. Depending on the type of filler used, the results can last anywhere from 6-24 months.
Another alternative is fat grafting. This takes adipose tissue, or fat from another area in the body, and places it into specific places in the face. This can be particularly helpful in creating more volume throughout the entire face. It can be done in the operating room or under local anesthesia with mild sedation in the office. The downside to fat grafting is that the amount of fat resorption can be unpredictable, and results can vary from side to side.
The final alternative involves resuspending hollowing tissue under the cheek bones, and is a midface lift. This is a great option for an aging face. It can help to soften a deep nasolabial fold, and also add more volume to the cheek area by bringing up tissue from the lower cheek onto the upper cheek. The incisions are hidden within the hairline, and the downtime is about one week, although there might be some swelling that comes down with time.
Now every patient is different in what they need, and what they are a candidate for. So if you have questions about cheek augmentation, or are considering any of these options we discussed, email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule a consultation.