Facial implants improve proportion and balance to the face. They are specially formed material that is compatible with human tissue. Facial implants are designed to enhance or augment the structure of the face and can help correct a small chin, weak jaw or lack of facial contour. A consultation with a plastic surgeon is needed to evaluate your goals and to determine which implant is best for you.
If you are bothered by a weak jaw, small chin or lack of facial contour, facial implant surgery may benefit you. Chin augmentation can increase the size of a chin that might not be proportionate with your forehead or face. It can also balance out the look of a larger nose without nasal surgery.
Jaw implants increase the width of the lower third of your face. A weak jaw can look like one that is not well defined and is not distinct from the neck. It may slope rather than angle.
Cheek implants increase the projection of the cheekbones. Volume is added to the areas that appear flat.
Candidates for facial implant surgery include:
- Healthy individuals
- Individuals whose facial bones have reached physical maturity
- Individuals with weak chins, unpronounced cheeks or undefined jaw line.
- Individuals with a positive outlook and specific goals in mind for their surgery
Facial implant surgery is performed at an outpatient operating room or surgery center.
The specific area to be augmented in the cheek determines where an implant will be positioned on the cheekbone. Cheek implants are inserted through an incision that is made on the inside of the mouth or along the lower eyelid. If another cosmetic procedure is being performed at the same time, such as a facelift or eyelid surgery, the implants may be inserted through the same incisions.
Chin implants are inserted through a pocket in front of the jawbone. The incision is made along the lower lip inside of the mouth or just below the chin area.
Lower jaw implants are placed through an incision made inside the mouth on either side of the lower lip or just below the ears.
Your incisions will be closed with absorbable sutures or stitches. Absorbable sutures do not require removal.
Length of Surgery
Facial implant surgery can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours, depending on which implants are being placed.
Recovery, Risks and Results
Some of the risks associated with facial implant surgery are:
- Shifting or imprecise positioning of implant
- Infection around implant which may require a second surgery
- Excess tightening and hardening of scar tissue around the implant
- Numbness or nerve injury
After your facial implant surgery, bandages or dressings will be applied to the incision site. Your plastic surgeon will give you specific instructions about how to care for the surgical site, which medications to apply and take orally as well as when you should follow up with your plastic surgeon.
During your initial healing phase, you will experience swelling, discoloration, numbness or discomfort. Facial movements may be temporarily restricted or impaired which is common. Facial swelling will subside over several months.