Soft Tissue Fillers

Soft tissue fillers, also known as dermal fillers, are implants used to create smoother, fuller, more proportionate contours in the face, cheeks, lips and back of the hands. These fillers are injected beneath the skin to restore the volume lost during the aging process, to smooth out fine lines and wrinkles, fill deep creases and enhance the natural contours of the face. Because soft tissue fillers require injections as opposed to surgical incisions, many people opt for this procedure as an alternative to face and brow lifts.

Who is a good candidate for soft tissue fillers?

Men and women with smile lines, sunken cheeks, diminished vertical lip lines and large creases in the chin and forehead are good candidates for soft tissue fillers. Furthermore, if you have depressed scars on your face caused by acne or an accident, soft tissue fillers can correct this issue by filling in the space left by the deep scar.

Those who have extremely droppy skin around the eyes (bags below the lower lids and bags above the upper lids) and a saggy neck (commonly known as ‘turkey neck’) may not benefit from soft tissue filler and instead be ideal candidates for eye and neck lifts. Additionally, fillers do not create the same taut appearance that would be achieved after a facelift. If you are looking for a tighter facial appearance, then talk to your surgeon about getting a facelift instead.

Finally, in order to be an ideal candidate for soft tissue fillers you need to be in overall good health. During your initial meeting with your surgeon they will assess your medical history to help determine your candidacy for this procedure.

What does the recovery process entail?

The recovery process following soft tissue fillers is fairly simple. After receiving dermal fillers you should notice the results immediately. The area that was treated may bruise or swell temporarily but this will subside within days.

You will be able to return to your normal activities after your treatment as long as you avoid exercise or strenuous activities for 48-72 hours.

The only major avoidance you will need to take on after this type of treatment is smoking. You cannot smoke after undergoing any type of procedure whether it is surgical in nature or not. Smoking delays the brain’s ability to properly process oxygen and hinders the circulation system.

What to look for in a surgeon?

The Canadian Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (CSAPS) is the only surgical body recognized in Canada. Your surgeon must be a member of CSAPS and certified by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. Dermal fillers can also be injected by a dermatologist as long as they are a member of the Canadian Dermatology Association. It’s important that the surgeon or dermatologist you choose to perform your soft tissue filler treatment has experience and makes you feel comfortable.

Here are three questions you can ask dermatologists and surgeons to ensure that they are qualified to administer soft tissue filler injections:

1. How many soft tissue fillers have procedures have you done?

2. Where did you train as a surgeon or dermatologist?

3. How long have you been a practicing surgeon or dermatologist?

Lip Injections

Lip injections are a minimally invasive cosmetic procedure done to create volume, shape and structure to the lips. Injectable dermal fillers made of hyaluronic acid are commonly used for this procedure and the results yield plumber, more sensual lips. Lip injections are used to treat drooping mouth corners, a flattened Cupid’s Bow, vertical wrinkles, smoker’s lines, a naturally thin upper or lower lip, age-related issues, and lips that have lost all volume.

Who is a good candidate for lip injections?

To be considered an ideal candidate for lip injections you must be an adult in overall good health. Lip augmentation cannot be performed on those under 18 because the lips must have completed their natural growth process. Only in rare cases can teenagers under 18 undergo this procedure. Usually, people with thin lips or those who have an age-related decrease in lip volume are the best candidates for lip injections.

If you suffer from lupus, diabetes, blood-clotting issues or oral herpes you are not a good candidate for lip augmentation. You will be required to disclose your medical history with your surgeon during the initial meeting. This will help your surgeon determine your candidacy to ensure that your lips can handle the procedure.

Finally, smokers will need to quit at least two weeks prior to the procedure. Smoking hinders the body’s ability to process oxygen and it’s important you remain smoke free for a period determined by your surgeon after your lip augmentation procedure to ensure proper healing.

What is the recovery process like after receiving lip injections?

There is a very short recovery period following lip injections. Within a day, you will be able to return to your regular routine. You can ice the area to bring the swelling and bruising down but be careful and avoid pressing too hard. Also, avoid drinking from a straw as you recover. The suction motion needed to bring liquid up through the straw may be too intense for lips that have recently been injected.

The side-effects such as bruising, swelling or tenderness generally subside quickly and you will notice that your lips appear more shapely yet natural after 24 hours. Avoid lipstick until the swelling and bruising have subsided.

What to look for in a surgeon

The Canadian Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (CSAPS) is the only recognized body of cosmetic surgery in Canada. Any plastic surgeon who practices in Canada must also be board-certified by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. However, in the case of lip injections, a certified aesthetic technician, nurse or dermatologist can also perform this procedure. They are required to undergo special training or schooling to be able to perform lip augmentations.

Here are three questions you can ask potential surgeons, technicians, nurses or dermatologists to see if they are capable of performing your lip augmentation procedure:

1. How many lip injections have you done?

2. Where did you receive your training?

3. How long have you been a practicing surgeon/dermatologist/nurse/aesthetic technician?

Laser Hair Removal

Laser hair removal is a cosmetic practice done to remove unwanted body hair. By using highly concentrated pulses of light from a laser, hair follicles are destroyed and cannot grow back. The pigment in the follicles absorb the light which leads to their demise. Laser hair removal is a permanent procedure and can be done on all areas of the body including the back, chest, face, bikini, legs and arms.

Who is a good candidate for laser hair removal?

Before, men and women with fair skin and lighter hair were considered the only ideal candidates for laser hair removal. Now, technology has advanced to allow darker skinned people to also benefit from this procedure. The laser’s wavelength can be adjusted to all skin and hair types to ensure that the treatment is effective. When you meet with your surgeon for the initial meeting, he/she will evaluate your skin type to see what wavelength is necessary for your laser hair removal procedure to work.

If you have a tattoo on the area of the body you wish to have treated, you cannot have laser hair removal on that patch of skin. The laser may cause your tattoo to discolour and fade. Although laser hair removal and laser tattoo removal are not the same thing, the light pulses from the hair removal device cannot distinguish between pigment and tattoo ink.

What does the recovery process from this procedure entail?

The recovery process from laser hair removal treatments is minimal. Following your procedure you will be given an ice pack, cold water or anti-inflammatory creams for your comfort. The skin will be pink and swollen and can appear as if it is sunburnt. These side-effects generally dissipate within an hour or two and you can return to your normal activities. If your underarms were treated, you cannot wear deodorant for 24 hours following your procedure.

In rare cases, blistering, scabbing or temporary pigment changes can occur. If the aforementioned happens, return to your surgeon immediately so he/she can apply specific medication to reduce the blistering, scabbing or pigment changes.

What to look for in a surgeon?

Only surgeons, dermatologists and certified laser technicians can perform laser hair removal. Dermatologists must be members of the Canadian Dermatology Association (CDA). Laser technicians must receive their certification from a reputable college or training centre to be qualified to perform this procedure. Surgeons must be members of the Canadian Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery and certified by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada.

Below you’ll find three questions you can ask potential surgeons, dermatologists and laser technicians to find out if they’re the right fit to administer your hair removal treatment:

1. Where did you train?

2. How many laser hair removal procedures have you completed?

3. How long have you been in practice?

Dermabrasion

Dermabrasion is a skin-resurfacing procedure done to reduce the appearance of scars, fine lines and wrinkles, sun damage, uneven skin tone, rhinophyma (excessive redness and swelling of the nose), patchiness and markings caused by acne. This procedure uses a rapidly rotating device to sand the outer layers of skin to remove dead and damaged skin leading to new skin to grow in its place. The new skin is smoother and younger looking creating a radiant glow.

Who is a good candidate for dermabrasion?

In order to be considered a good candidate for dermabrasion your must be in overall good health and a non-smoker. If you do smoke you will be asked to refrain from smoking for at least two weeks before your procedure. You will also need to remain smoke free as you heal to give your skin a chance to receive ample oxygen. Smoking interferes with the brain’s ability to properly take in oxygen and it’s important that you get enough before, during and after your treatment.

Those with sun damage, acne scars and marks, uneven skin tone and extreme redness are ideal candidates for dermabrasion. However, if you have keloids (overgrown scar tissue that sit on top of the skin), cystic acne, herpes simplex, pus-filled acne, radiation damage or have taken certain oral acne medications you will not be able to undergo a dermabrasion procedure.

What does the recovery process following a dermabrasion procedure entail?

As soon as your treatment is completed, your surgeon will cover your skin with a moist, non-stick dressing. Your surgeon will schedule a follow up shortly after your procedure so that your dressing can be changed and he/she can address your skin’s progress. Your doctor may also give you instructions on how to change the dressing yourself.

Following your dermabrasion procedure your skin will be red and swollen. Some people experience extreme itching, burning or tingling while others only mildly experience these side-effects. As the old layers of skin beging to fall off, a scab or crust will form before allowing the new skin to emerge. As the new skin begins to grow you may find your face itchy but this will fade. Your surgeon may prescribe pain medication to help you deal with your discomfort. Although, many people are able to use over-the-counter pain relief medications such as Tylenol to manage their discomfort.

You will need to wait until your surgeon gives you clearance to begin washing your face as normal. In the interim your doctor will let you know when you can start applying protective ointments like petroleum jelly or sunscreen. When you return to work is up to you but it’s recommended that you stay at home for two weeks and avoid active sports, swimming or intense exercise for at least 4-6 weeks.

Makeup can only be worn once the new skin has completely grown in. Your skin may remain pink or reddish for about three months and be completely sensitive to the touch during that time period as well. This is normal and only a cause for concern if you notice a rash, swelling or infection. Should these things occur, visit your doctor immediately so he/she can prescribe antibiotics or steroid cream to deal with this unfortunate turn in your skin.

What to look for in this type of surgeon?

Although, dermabrasion is not technically a surgical procedure it must be performed by a cosmetic surgeon or dermatologist. There is only one recognized body of plastic surgeons in the country and it is the Canadian Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (CSAPS). Your surgeon must be a member of CSAPS and board-certified by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. Dermatologists must be accredited by the Canadian Dermatology Association (CDA) in order to practice in Canada.

Below you’ll find three questions to ask potential surgeons and dermatologists to see if they’re the right fit to perform your dermabrasion procedure:

1. How many dermabrasions have you done?

2. Where did you do your training?

3. How long have you been a practicing surgeon/dermatologist?

Cool Sculpting

Body shaping via the CoolSculpting system is a Health Canada-approved non-surgical treatment to reduce the amount of fat cells in the body. CoolSculpting uses controlled cooling to rid the body of stubborn fat cells that are resistant to diet and exercise. The results yield a toned physique, free of fatty bulges.

Who is a good candidate for body shaping?

Coolsculpting is a body shaping procedure for people that have noticeable bulges in the abdomen, thighs, chin and back. These bulges do not seem to disappear no matter how active you are and how much you manage your diet. People who wish to undergo CoolSculpting must be in general good health to be considered ideal candidates.

If you suffer from cryoglobulinemia (a group of diseases that cause inflammation and damage to blood vessels), cold agglutinin disease (a rare form of anemia) or paroxysmal cold hemoglobinuria (when hemoglobin appears in the urine), you cannot undergo this procedure. Furthermore, CoolSculpting is not a treatment for obesity. You must be at your ideal weight with the exception of the stubborn fat pockets that don’t respond to diet and exercise.

What does the recovery from CoolSculpting entail?

CoolSculpting is a non-surgical procedure so there is no recovery time needed. Most people return to work immediately following their procedure. You can resume your normal exercise routine and unlike surgical fat removal procedures, there are no compression garments to be worn or painkillers prescribed.

During the CoolSculpting session many people experience sensations of pulling or tugging. Some people also feel a mild pinching or stinging due to the intense cold of the fat freezing procedure. These sensations are completely normal and will subside as soon as the area being treated becomes numb.

Following the procedure some patients feel cramping, itching or tenderness in the treated areas. Light bruising or redness and skin sensitivity is expected. Those who have their submental area (neck/chin) area treated may feel a fullness in the back of the throat post-treatment. These side-effects are normal and will subside shortly.

What to look for in a surgeon

The Canadian Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (CSAPS) is the only recognized body in Canada. Your surgeon must be a member of CSAPS and board-certified by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. However, body shaping isn’t a surgical procedure so you will need to ensure that your surgeon and his/her technicians and nurses are trained in this specific treatment system.

Here are three questions to ask potential surgeons to see if they are good fit to perform your CoolSculpting procedure:

1. How many of these procedures have you done?

2. Where did you learn to use the system/where were you trained?

3. Are your nurses and technicians trained in the system as well?

Chemical Peel

Chemical peels are a procedure done to improve the skin’s appearance and reduce the effects of aging, acne scars and uneven skin tone. This treatment uses a safe chemical solution that when applied to the skin causes it to blister then peel off, revealing beautiful, smoother skin underneath. Chemical peels are also used to treat numerous skin conditions like melasma and hyperpigmentation.

Who is a good candidate for a chemical peel?

Men and women with fair skin or light hair are better candidates for chemical peels. However, if you have darker skin and hair you can still get a chemical peel but the results may not be as long-lasting. Regardless of your skin type you must be a non-smoker in overall good health to be able to undergo this skin treatment. If you do smoke your surgeon will ask that you quit at least two weeks prior to your procedure. You will also need to remain smoke free as you recover from your chemical peel to give your body a chance to properly heal. Smoking interferes with the circulatory system by hindering oxygen intake and blood flow and it’s important that your skin breathe after your chemical peel for best results.

There are certain individuals who are not eligible candidates for a chemical peel treatment. Those who are nursing, pregnant, have severe skin issues (psoriasis, eczema, dermatitis, rosacea), have used prescription acne medication in the last year, and have used skin-care products that contain ascorbic acid, bleaching or skin-lightening agents in the last 48 hours cannot undergo a chemical peel.

What does the recovery process look like?

After a chemical peel your surgeon may wrap the treated area in bandages. These bandages are usually removed after several days. The type of peel you received will determine how much time should be allocated for recovery.

Superficial peel: The healing time required is minimal. The treated skin may be red and scaly but this will subside quickly. Your surgeon will tell you which lotions or creams you will need apply as you heal and you can wear makeup within 48 hours of your peel.

Medium peel: This type of chemical peel has a longer recovery period of about 7-14 days. The treated skin will be swollen and red but this will lessen after the first 48 hours. If the area around the eyelids has been treated they may swell shut for a day or two but this will subside. The skin will also blister and break before peeling off to reveal the new skin underneath. Your surgeon will prescribe antiviral medication and let you know which creams and lotions must be applied as you heal. Makeup can be worn after seven days.

Deep peel: Deep peels take about three weeks to heal. For the first 14 days you will need to soak your skin daily, apply a prescribed ointment and take antiviral medication. Then, a thick moisturizer must be applied. As you heal your skin will blister, crack and swell. It will also be red but these side-effects will disappear in time. You can resume wearing makeup after about two weeks.

No matter the type of peel you receive you will need to avoid direct sun exposure for at least three months following the procedure. Additionally, sunscreen must be worn any time you leave the house to ensure your skin is protected.

What to look for in a surgeon?

In Canada, there is only one recognized body of professional plastic surgeons. The surgeon you choose must be a member of the Canadian Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (CSAPS) and certified by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. Dermatologists who are members of the Canadian Dermatology Association (CDA) and certified aesthetic technicians (those who have graduated from a reputable aesthetic college or training centre) are also authorized to give chemical peels.

Here are three questions you can ask potential surgeons, dermatologists or certified aesthetic technicians to see if they are a good fit to perform your chemical peel procedure:

1. Where did you complete your training?

2. How many chemical peels have you given?

3. How long have you been a practicing surgeon/dermatologist/technician?

Botox

Botox is a procedure done to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles around the eyes, forehead and mouth. The aging process, along with genetics and environmental factors, causes our skin to lose elasticity, our muscles to contract, our brows to furrow and collagen production to become reduced. Botox corrects these issues through injections that contain purified protein from the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. This protein is then synthesized in a laboratory to create a safe injectable fluid that reduces muscle activity by temporarily paralyzing the muscles to create smoother facial appearance.

Who is a good candidate for Botox?

Those with horizontal forehead creases, laugh lines, crows feet and frown lines between the eyebrows are ideal candidates for Botox because the treatments address these issues directly. Men and women who are in overall good health can undergo Botox, however if you’ve had an infection in the area being treated, you are not eligible for this procedure. Finally, you cannot undergo Botox if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

What is the recovery process after Botox like?

Immediately following your Botox treatment you may experience bruising or swelling at the injection sites. This is normal and will subside within a day or two. Some people notice light bleeding or redness at the injection site. This is only a cause for concern if the bleeding becomes heavy and the redness does not disappear after 24 hours. In this case, contact your doctor immediately.

Botox treatment requires no sutures, incisions or bandages. Because of this, you can go about your day once it’s over. Be careful not to rub the injected areas or lie down for about 12 hours so that the Botox solution doesn’t migrate. You also mustn’t smoke as you heal because smoking hinders the body’s natural ability to process oxygen and blocks proper blood flow.

What to look for in this type of surgeon?

Botox must be done by a certified, experienced professional. This can either be a cosmetic surgeon or dermatologist. The Canadian Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (CSAPS) is the only recognized body in the country. Your surgeon must be a member of CSAPS and certified by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. Dermatologists must be members of the Canadian Dermatology Association (CDA).

There are three questions you can ask potential surgeons and dermatologists to see if they’re capable of administering your Botox procedure:

1. Where did you receive your surgical or dermatological training?

2. How long have you been in practice?

3. How many Botox treatments have you performed?