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Lip augmentation: Are fillers or lip implants right for you? – plastic surgeon Huntersville NC

Many people would like to have fuller lips. Some have lips that are genetically on the thinner side, and have always wished for more volume. Others have lost volume in the lips due to aging and want to restore their youthful appearance. In addition to leaving the lips looking thinner, volume loss in the lips may increase the appearance of “lipstick lines” (small wrinkles that extend out from the lip area and tend to “fill in” with color when lipstick is applied).

Makeup often doesn’t offer a satisfactory solution for creating fuller lips. Putting lipstick on thin lips tends to simply highlight how thin the lips are, especially if it seeps into the lipstick lines. Fortunately, if you’re frustrated by thin lips, you have more than one option for improving the situation: injectable fillers and lip implants. Which one is right for you? How can you decide?

Lip injections

Dermal FillersOne option is to have injections of dermal fillers into the lip area. These substances, such as Juvederm or Restylane, are made up of hyaluronic acid. This is a natural substance that acts within the body to hold water and maintain volume in the tissues. When injected into the body, the filler will create volume where it is injected. Over time, the body naturally absorbs the filler. On average, results will last for about six months, although it could be longer or shorter depending on how fast your body metabolizes the hyaluronic acid.

Because they are temporary, fillers are almost always the best choice for those who are having lip augmentation for the first time. A filler allows a patient to see what they look like with fuller lips. Because the amount of the filler can be adjusted, patients can also “try out” different lip sizes in order to see what they prefer. If a patient’s results aren’t as dramatic as she would like, her doctor can easily and safely perform another injection to add more volume to the lips.

The temporary nature of fillers is also a downside for those who like how they look with fuller lips and want to maintain their results. Some patients choose to have repeat injections on a regular basis. Others would like a more permanent solution; these patients may want to consider lip implants.

PermaLip implants

Lip implants are placed under the lips in order to create a fuller appearance. Dr. Miles uses PermaLip implants, which are made of silicone. The silicone is a solid form, so there are no problems with the implants leaking. Because it’s a soft material, the implants have a natural feel, even when kissing. Various sizes are available, to accommodate different facial sizes and to allow for varying degrees of lip augmentation. PermaLip implants also have a coating that prevents the body tissues from becoming attached to the implants, which allows the implants to be removed without causing damage.

The placement of lip implants is a minimally invasive procedure, and can usually be performed in the office using local anesthetic. (A mild sedative can also be used for patients who feel nervous about the procedure.) Patients should expect significant swelling to occur for a few days following the procedure, so it’s necessary to plan for some downtime to recover. However, general anesthetic and an operating room are usually not required.

Implants are a permanent solution for those who would like to have fuller lips. Once they’re placed, there is no need to continue having treatments to maintain the results. If a patient doesn’t like the look of the implants, or wants to change the size of the implants, then a new procedure can be performed to remove them or switch them out for new ones. Because they are coated, there will be minimal tissue damage when this is done.

Although implants do have a higher cost than do injections, it’s important to consider the cost over time. If you will want to maintain the results for years to come, the cost of injections will add up. Implants are often a more economical choice over the long term.

Discuss your lip augmentation with a plastic surgeon Huntersville, NC

Whether you choose lip augmentation with injectable fillers or with lip implants, it’s important to have the work done by a qualified professional. You should only trust your lips to someone with the training and experience necessary to ensure that the procedure is done well. Unfortunately, those who try to skimp in this area often regret it when the results are poor, and then must spend even more money and time getting the problems fixed.

Dr. MilesDr. Miles is a double board-certified plastic surgeon, placing him among the most highly-qualified professionals in the field. If you’re considering lip augmentation, please come for a consultation with Dr. Erik Miles. He will discuss your options with you, and give his recommendations about which option would work best based on your facial features and your goals for your appearance. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Miles, please contact our office.

Dr. Erik J. Miles
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