04 May Nasolabial Folds Treatment: Can Surgery Treat Deep Smile Lines?
Removing Nasolabial Folds With Surgery
Also known as smile lines or laugh lines, nasolabial folds are the creases running from the sides of the nose to the corners of the mouth. Nasolabial folds are a natural part of aging and occur as the skin loses elasticity and collagen over time. While some people embrace nasolabial folds as a sign of character and experience, others may feel self-conscious about the folds and seek out surgery to reduce deep smile lines.
What causes deep smile lines?
Collagen and elastin fibers can break down as a result of several environmental and lifestyle factors, including prolonged sun exposure, age, and smoking. Over time, changes in the skin can cause sagging and loss of shape and structure. Other factors that can cause nasolabial folds include significant changes in weight and side sleeping.
Stopping the formation of deep lines
Preventing nasolabial folds is possible but not guaranteed. Since ultraviolet (UV) exposure is a significant factor in developing deep smile lines, using the proper sun protection can protect the skin. In addition, moisturizing products with antioxidants and retinol can rejuvenate the skin and stimulate collagen and elastin production. Since retinol can make skin more sensitive, using a moisturizer and sunscreen during such treatment is crucial.
Adding volume to the skin and smoothing out wrinkles and folds is possible with injectable dermal fillers. Dermal fillers can include various substances, including hyaluronic acid, calcium hydroxylapatite, and poly-L-lactic acid. The filler is injected into the skin using a fine needle, instantly adding volume to specific areas of the face, such as the cheeks, lips, and chin. Fat grafting is similar but uses a person’s fat to achieve the plumped-up look.
Chemical peels and laser treatments are popular skin resurfacing techniques used to improve skin texture and appearance. Laser resurfacing uses a beam of light to remove the exterior layers of damaged skin and stimulate collagen production. Chemical peels use a chemical solution to remove the outer skin layers and promote renewed growth. Microneedling is another option that uses a device with fine needles to create microscopic punctures in the skin, stimulating the production of elastin and collagen. The microneedling procedure can improve the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines, such as nasolabial folds.
For the deepest smile lines
Subcision surgery is usually used to treat deep wrinkles and depressed acne scars. During subcision surgery, an incision is made under the skin’s surface and is designed to break up and release the fibrous bands pulling down on the skin and causing the scarring. Once the fibrous bands are released, the skin can heal and smooth out, reducing the appearance of the scars. For nasolabial folds, the small puncture stimulates collagen production.
Finding the right solution
Nasolabial folds treatment can include surgery, non-surgical procedures, and at-home skincare treatments. While surgery can effectively treat deep smile lines, patients should consider the potential risks and complications and choose a qualified and experienced plastic surgeon. Non-surgical options, such as dermal fillers and lasers, can also be effective but may require multiple sessions to see optimal results.