There comes a time when the realisation hits that the ageing process affects us all. Fortunately there are things that can be done to protect your skin and there are also treatments that can help improve any damage that may have been caused. Here Lisa Ali-Khan, aesthetic practitioner within the LASE Medical team at Spire Washington Hospital, talks through some of the non-surgical facial cosmetic services on offer.
What’s the difference between surgical and non-surgical facial cosmetic services?
Facial cosmetic services fall into two groups – quick, safe and effective softer treatments that usually only take minutes to perform and last months, and the more serious surgical options such as face, brow and neck lifts, which are more specialised and offer more definitive, longer term results.
The non-surgical treatments that we provide include muscle relaxing injections, dermal fillers, micro-needling treatments, facial peels and skin conditioning, to name but a few.
What are anti-wrinkle injections and fillers used for?
Anti-wrinkle injections can be very useful for those with fine lines around the eyes, frown and forehead, as well as what are known as ‘bunny lines’ from wrinkling the nose and a downturned mouth.
The muscle is directly treated to relax it and stop it contracting. Effectively it treats the overuse of muscles by preventing the usual crease of the skin that causes lines. A considerable improvement can generally be seen although the line may not be fully corrected. In some cases, a combination treatment including fillers may be offered. These anti – wrinkle injection treatments last for approximately 3 – 4 months.
Dermal fillers work slightly differently and are ideal for those who wish to improve and rejuvenate areas of the face, hands and the décolletage by filling out wrinkles and creases. We use a water-based gel and inject this just under the skin in a strength suited to the individual need. The results last around 9-12 months. Any patient having a treatment that requires a prescription will be seen by a consultant plastic surgeon prior to the first treatment and that particular appointment is free of charge.
What is a micro-needling treatment?
Micro-needling is a very popular treatment that creates a refreshed and more youthful appearance and it is used to treat pigmentation, wrinkles, large pores and skin laxity.The treatment is far more cost effective that laser skin resurfacing and is much more comfortable. We use a dermaroller system that sees tiny pins pressed against the skin after a numbing cream has been applied. The tiny injections allow the skin to create new collagen and elastin and increase cell renewal, when coupled with the serums and creams we offer, the effect can be very positive, especially on crêpey and dehydrated skin. A course of 3 treatments is required and the results can last for over a year, longer in some cases.This treatment is ideal for those planning for special occasions, for example a big birthday celebration or the mother of the bride. It only takes 48 hours for the redness to go down and a smaller dermastamp can even been used around the very fragile eye area, which is beneficial.
Who are all these types of treatment best suited to?
These are really most suitable from anyone aged 25 upwards who wishes to remain youthful in looks. Ultimately we help people make the most of their appearance and it is ladies in their thirties up to their seventies that we see most frequently in the treatment room.
What type of things should people consider before seeking a non-surgical facial treatment?
People can really protect their skin and our recommendation is to always use a sun scream with SPF 30 over the face, neck and ears, as well as on the back of the hands.
When choosing where to go, only an appropriately trained doctor or registered nurse in a clinical environment should carry out these treatments so pick a hospital offering these services if you can. It’s worth it for the peace of mind and the knowledge you’ll get very high quality care.