Dr. Leonard uses facial implants improve the chin, cheeks, and jawline to balance facial features or create a more youthful appearance. Facial implants are manufactured from a wide range of materials, giving patients many options. Dr. Leonard carefully customizes implants before the procedure to create the right look for every patient.
What to Expect
Many patients experience a boost of self-esteem after facial implants. Facial implants can be done alone or with other procedures.Dr. Leonard often places implants over cheekbones during a facelift to make patients look younger. Implants fill out sunken or tired areas. Facial implants can strengthen a weak chin or jawline. Dr. Leonard can also use implants to bring a chin forward or change the shape of a patient’s nose.
Dr. Leonard can insert cheek implants by making a small incision in the mouth or lower eyelid, then securing the implants on or below the cheekbone. He can customize the shape, size, and material of the implants to create the ideal shape for the patient. When placing cheek implants during a facelift, browlift, or eyebrow modification, Dr. Leonard can often use the same incision for multiple procedures. When done alone, a cheek augmentation usually takes between 30 and 45 minutes.
Reshaping the Chin
Dr. Leonard has several options for chin surgeries. He can reshape the chin with customized implants or reshape the chin bone to enhance the harmony of your chin and other facial features. For chin implants, Dr. Leonard makes a small incision inside the lower lip or under the chin, then secures the implant onto the jawbone. Chin surgery can usually be done in less than an hour. Afterward, Dr. Leonard tapes the chin to reduce pain and swelling. Facial sutures need to be removed in about a week. Oral sutures dissolve on their own. Many patients elect to have chin and nose surgery at the same time.
Jaw implants add definition the jaw line. A distinct angle from the ear to the chin creates a pleasing facial balance. Dr. Leonard makes an internal incision on the inside of the lower lip, then creates a pocket for the jaw implant. He closes the incision with dissolving sutures that do not need to be removed. The process takes one to two hours.
Recovery from Jaw Surgery
Significant swelling after jaw surgery is common. It usually peaks 24 to 48 hours after the implants are inserted, but it will decrease over the next several days. Smiling, talking, and eating may be difficult until the swelling subsides. Mild swelling may continue for several months preventing the full benefits of the procedure from being visible. Vigilent dental and oral hygiene are crucial after jaw surgery. Dr. Leonard will give you clear instructions on what you need to do to minimize pain and decrease the swelling.
Uncertainty and Risk from Facial Implant Surgery
Facial implants can dramatically improve the proportions and balance of your facial features, but all medical procedures include uncertainty and risk. Problems rarely occur as a result of facial implant surgery, but you need to be fully aware of such a possibility. The following are a few of the complications that could arise. Dr. Leonard will give you a more detailed list of risks and complications before your surgery and answer any questions that you may have. Infection is a risk during and following any surgical operation. Antibiotics are usually able to resolve any infection that occurs, but if the infection does not resolve it may be necessary to temporarily remove the implant and replace it later after you have fully healed from the infection.
Sometimes a facial implant will shift slightly after the Dr. Leonard completes the procedure. In this case, he will need to perform a second operation to move the implant back to the proper position or alignment. Implants are made out of several types of materials including solid silicone. There is no scientific evidence showing that solid silicone is harmful to humans, but Dr. Leonard can discuss any concerns you may have.
It is always a good idea to write out any questions that occur to you before your appointment so that you remember to ask about every concern that you have. If questions arise after your appointment, call our office. It is important that you are aware of any potential risks, no matter how small, and comfortable with the steps Dr. Leonard takes to prevent problems before they occur. If something does go wrong, you can be confident that Dr. Leonard will find the best solution for your situation.
Preparing for Your First Appointment
Spend some time before your first appointment with Dr. Leonard thinking about what you want from cosmetic surgery. Photos of people with facial features similar to what you would like are extremely helpful. The better you can express your expectations, the more accurately Dr. Leonard can guide you to what is and is not realistic. Let your goal be improvement, not perfection and you will be pleased by the many options available to you.
Prepare a list of questions. Several thoughts and questions will probably come to your mind before your first meeting with Dr. Leonard. Take the time to jot these down as they occur. It’s very easy to forget something if you don’t have it written down. Dr. Leonard will help you understand what enhancements he can make and what to expect after your procedure. He will also discuss the financial details of the procedure.
Preparing for Your Surgery
There are several things you need to do to prepare for your surgery. Dr. Leonard needs your full medical and dental history in order to make the procedure as safe and successful as possible. This includes a full list of medications that you take, including aspirin or other over-the- counter drugs. If the surgery requires an oral incision, be certain to tell him if you smoke or have any dental or gum problems.
Dr. Leonard will give you a list of tasks to complete before your procedure. You may need to arrange for someone to drive you home. In some cases, you will not be allowed to eat or drink several hours before your surgery. Dr. Leonard may prescribe oral antibiotics to take before and after the surgery to protect you against infections. Every situation is unique and Dr. Leonard will give you a customized and detailed list of things to do. Ask questions about anything you are unsure about. If something goes wrong, such as absent-mindedly taking a drink of orange juice before you remember you are supposed to be fasting, tell Dr. Leonard when you arrive for the procedure.
Where Your Surgery Will Take Place
The location of your surgery depends on your unique medical condition, the procedure being performed, and other procedures being performed at the same time. Dr. Leonard may perform the procedure in his office, at an outpatient facility, or a hospital. Some procedures may require an overnight stay.
Facial implant surgery often only require the combination of a local anesthesia and a sedative. In other situations, Dr. Leonard may recommend a general anesthesia.
Your New Look
You will look good and feel better soon after facial surgery, but you may need to avoid activities where your face may be jostled or bumped for several weeks until it is fully healed. Check with Dr. Leonard about any activities that you should avoid for a short time. It may take several weeks before you can see all the benefits of facial implant surgery. Be patient – and enjoy all the comments from people who notice that you look better and healthier.
Your New Look
Remember, with any facial surgery, you may feel and look better in a short period of time. However, it may not be advisable to participate in certain activities (especially activity that may result in the face being jarred or bumped) for several weeks. It’s best to check with your plastic surgeon about such matters.
You may not be able to accurately evaluate your appearance for weeks, or perhaps even months. Give yourself plenty of time to get used to your new look.
You may be surprised to find that most people won’t recognize that you’ve had facial implant surgery – only that you look better.