1. How do I know if I need a chin implant?
Chin implants achieve one or several of a specific set of goals. They provide definition to the jawline. They “strengthen” the appearance of the chin, providing proportion to the face; this is especially noticeable in the apparent projection of the nose and prominence of the forehead. Although chin implants can also be used in conjunction with other procedures to provide a more youthful appearance, they are used to provide a structural improvement rather than facial rejuvenation.
2. Why are chin implants sometimes recommended with rhinoplasty?
Facial aesthetics are based on symmetry and balance. When a single feature is too large or small in relation to the proportions of the overall face, that relative difference is magnified and becomes obvious. By adjusting the proportions of the face relative to one another such that there is a harmonious relationship, a more proportionate, and therefore more aesthetic, face results. In some cases, the nose can appear to become smaller simply by augmenting the chin to correct facial proportions.
3. What are implants made of?
Chin implants come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and materials. The most commonly used is the silastic implant, which is preformed in a large variety of shapes and sizes. Others are more like gauze (mersilene mesh), allowing customization for each individual when needed. These two materials are the most common that Dr. Chow employs in chin augmentation. These substances have a very low complication rate and have been proven to be safe for chin implant procedures. Having written articles in the medical literature on this subject, Dr. Chow is familiar with a wide range of implant materials and can discuss the risks or benefits of each with you.
4. How do I know if I need a chin implant or liposuction of the neck?
Neck liposuction removes fat. If the neck skin has enough elasticity, it will reshape to a more youthful neckline once the fat below it has been removed. Neck liposuction will not remove sagging excess skin (often referred to as “turkey waddle”) or erase wrinkles or lines in the skin. Such excess, baggy skin is treated with a neck or facelift.
5. For men, does a chin implant affect shaving?
Not significantly. For the first few days, there is a dressing which covers the incision. Men simply shave around the dressing until it is removed on the fourth day. They may then shave the surgical area with a straight edge blade for one week. Electric razors are best avoided for at least 10 days after surgery to prevent undue pressure and stress on the implant.
6. How long will bruising and swelling last?
After the procedure, bruising and swelling begins to resolve at the end of the first week. Complete resolution may take two to six weeks. However, any discoloration after the first week is easily camouflaged with concealer.
7. When can I go back to work?
Most people are able to return to work approximately 1 week after the implant has been placed. Two to three weeks off work is recommended when multiple procedures are performed in conjunction with the chin augmentation. It is important to avoid anything that will increase your blood pressure – bending, lifting objects greater than 20 pounds, and straining will all prolong the recovery period.
8. I’m very anxious about getting a chin implant. Should I be so stressed?
Altering the appearance of your face is always a big decision, and never one to be taken lightly. Sometimes, the best way to understand how chin augmentation will benefit you is to take the time to visit the Chow Center for Facial Plastic Surgery and have an image enhancement session. This will provide you with a visual approximation of how the proportions of your face can be improved. You will be able to speak with Dr. Chow regarding any and all concerns you have so that you are fully informed about the potential benefits of chin enhancement.