facelift timing

What is the right age for a facelift?

Choosing to have a facelift is a very personal decision and there isn’t really a right – or wrong – age to undergo facial rejuvenation surgery. Every patient has different requirements and expectations and Mr Alan Park will always offer unbiased, expert advice to each individual patient. However, here are some factors you may wish to consider if you’re thinking about undergoing a facelift.

Facelift timing: Too young for a facelift?

Patients in their mid to late 30s are typically too young for a facelift but there are a number of non-surgical aesthetic treatments, such as anti-wrinkle injections or dermal fillers, that can help you maintain a more youthful appearance. Often genetics can bestow a heavy brow or marked eye bags and so a subtle brow lift or lower lid blepharoplasty might be suitable for younger patients.

Facelift timing: Upper age limit on facelifts

If you’re in good health and have realistic expectations about what can be achieved, there is usually no reason why you can’t undergo a facelift in your 60s or 70s. Some patients will undergo a secondary facelift as facial rejuvenation surgery will not stop the skin from becoming laxer in the future although it can minimise the effects of the ageing process.

Facelift timing: But don’t leave it too late

Although many women and men undergo facelift surgery in their 60s and beyond, it’s also worth bearing in mind that facelift patients in their mid to late 40s or early 50s will often achieve the optimal results as there is still good skin elasticity and it is possible to produce a more ‘natural’ rejuvenation. A SMAS or Deep Plane facelift is ideal for lifting jowls and improving any sagging in the mid-face.

Everyone ages differently and so age is not the primary deciding factor in whether you’re a suitable candidate for a facelift. During your facelift consultation, Mr Alan Park will analyse volume loss, skin laxity and quality and discuss various lifestyle factors, as well as talk to you in-depth about the results you’re hoping to achieve.

To find out if you’re a suitable candidate for a facelift, call  01926 436341 to arrange a consultation with Mr Alan Park at his Warwickshire cosmetic surgery clinic.

breast augmentation scarring

What kind of scarring can I expect after a breast augmentation?

One of the most common questions that get asked in a breast augmentation consultation is, ‘what kind of scarring can I expect?’ A breast augmentation is a surgical procedure and, like any other surgical procedure, involves incisions and therefore scarring is an inevitable consequence.

The good news is that for most patients, breast augmentation scarring will eventually become very thin, flat and be positioned to be as least noticeable as possible.

Location of breast augmentation scars

There are a number of approaches Mr Alan Park can take in regard to the incisions he makes. During a breast augmentation procedure, implants are placed inside the breast pocket, and the most common incisions to make is the inframammary incision.

An incision is made in the natural curve underneath the breast. This incision is preferred because scarring is usually well hidden once healed.

Another incision is the periareolar incision where the incision is made around the edge areolas; again, when fully healed, this scar is usually well camouflaged. A less popular incision is the transaxillary incision, which is made under the arms, but this can allow for less accuracy in placing the implants.

How will my scars heal?

The most important thing to realise about breast augmentation scarring is that it can take over a year for your scars to fully mature. At first, they will appear pink and slightly raised and, over time, they will flatten and fade.

Certain factors will influence how you heal, including your age and skin tone. You can help with scar healing by not exposing the wound area to the sun. Mr Park always advises his breast augmentation patients to stop smoking in advance of their procedure and for a period afterwards. This is because nicotine is a vasoconstrictor and reduces the amount of oxygenated blood that will reach the wound, an invaluable part of the healing process. Adopting a healthy and nutritious diet and drinking lots of water during your recovery is also important.

Keloid scarring is a type of scar where collagen is overproduced and the scar will often appear very red, swollen and larger than the original incision. During your consultation, Mr Park will ask about how you’ve healed in the past when the skin has been injured to assess whether you’re at risk of keloid scarring. If your scar isn’t healing as expected there are measures that Mr Park can take to help.

If you would like more breast augmentation advice, call  01926 436341 to arrange a consultation with Mr Alan Park.

cosmetic surgery scars

New device developed that could minimise cosmetic surgery scars

All cosmetic surgery procedures, whether they are to the face, breasts or body, entail making incisions in the skin and, therefore, scarring is an inevitable side-effect of the surgical operation you decide to embark on. Even though scars can fade and flatten over time, it is not possible for them to disappear completely.

This is why new developments in how to minimise cosmetic surgery scarring are always greeted with interest and researchers in the US have developed a device that will help cosmetic surgeons plot their incisions.

However, it can also be very difficult to predict how a patient will scar as it depends on their body’s unique healing response, but there are certain steps that can be taken to ensure optimal scar healing, on behalf of both the patient and the surgeon.

How your cosmetic surgeon approaches scarring

The first step is to take a full medical history during the pre-surgery consultation because there are certain pre-existing medical conditions, such as diabetes, cancer or thyroid problems, that could affect how the patient heals.

Mr Alan Park will also ask how any previous scars have healed. If you have a susceptibility to keloid scarring than it may be advisable to avoid surgery or for your post-surgery scar management to be considered beforehand.

Mr Park will carefully plan your cosmetic surgery procedure, particularly in terms of placement of the incisions. For example, the incisions of a facelift will be made in the hairline or follow the face’s natural creases. A tummy tuck incision is a lengthy scar that stretches from hip to hip, so the incision is made below the bikini line.

The skin is made up of lines of cells which stretch in one direction and Mr Park will use his knowledge of these lines of tension to plot the incisions as wounds heal better and produce less scarring when a cut is made along the direction of the aligned collagen. This new device, developed in the US, proposes to quickly scan the skin and indicate exactly how the collagen is aligned and might be of use in the future.

What you can do to minimise cosmetic surgery scarring

Post-surgical infection can affect the healing process, so if you notice the wound is not healing well or there is discharge, swelling or pain, then make an appointment with our medical team to check all is well.

The most important step you can take to promote good scarring post-procedure is to stop smoking. Nicotine constricts the blood vessels which means there is less oxygen reaching the wound and this can affect the healing process. A healthy diet of foods rich in iron, zinc and vitamin C is also recommended.

Wearing a specially-designed compression garment in the post-surgery period is also recommended as it supports wound integrity as you heal and can prevent the overgrowth of scarring tissue.

During your cosmetic surgery consultation, Mr Alan Park will discuss the potential scarring that you can expect as well as give advice on how best to promote the healing process and minimise scarring. Call 01926 436341 to arrange your cosmetic surgery consultation.

botox results

How long will Botox last and should I be worried about any longer-term side effects?

Botox injections remain the most popular aesthetic procedure since they were approved for the treatment of glabella wrinkles, also known as frown lines. They are a minimally invasive, but highly effective way to temporarily paralyse the muscles under the skin, giving the appearance of smoother, firmer, less wrinkled skin.

How long do Botox injections last?

Botox treatments usually last between three to six months. Factors such as how fast your metabolism is and where the product is placed can have an effect on how soon the effects of Botox injections wear off.

Other factors can affect it too. Regular use of sunbeds can cause the effects to be weakened, so can regular gym usage, as this causes the body to break down the components faster.

How long can I keep using Botox for?

Within sensible parameters, you can keep using Botox for as long as you wish, but bear in mind that the older you get, the less effective the treatment will be. It is suggested that the ideal age for Botox treatment is your mid- to late-thirties, up to around age 50. After that, there are more permanent surgical treatments that are usually considered more effective.

If you have been using Botox for a while then it is a good idea to have a chat to your cosmetic surgeon about what other options are available, as they will be able to guide you based on factors such as your age, skin type and your expectations.

Are there any longer-term side effects?

Repeated use of Botox can cause the facial muscles to weaken over time – which might mean you need less – but that doesn’t mean they will atrophy as only small amounts of Botox are placed in the target area.

Assuming you visit a regulated cosmetic surgeon, who adheres to professional guidelines and standards, the amount of Botox contained within each dose is considered perfectly safe for patients.

lipo results

Can fat return after liposuction?

Liposuction is one of the most popular forms of body contouring, with thousands of consumers in the UK opting to have this done every year. Every the slimmest of people who eat well and exercise regularly can be troubled by stubborn pockets of fat, which is why liposuction is ideal, as it allows people to target specific areas with much more accuracy. During the operation, fat is extracted via a suction device through a small cannula inserted into the area of the body you wish to target.

One of the questions Mr Alan Park is asked during a liposuction consultation is whether it’s possible for the fat to come back again after you have had the procedure?

Looking after your lipo results

The most effective way to maintain the results of your lipo procedure is to stay healthy. Ideally, you need to have reached your target weight at the time you have liposuction and plan to maintain it. If you yo-yo with weight gain and weight loss following the procedure than you will find that this affects how the results look. The liposuction will be carried out with your current weight in mind and will be designed to fit your frame at the time of the procedure. It cannot maintain the look it has achieved if you gain a lot of weight afterwards.

Although liposuction is a permanent procedure in that the fat cells will not ‘grow back’, the remaining fat cells can expand. Or weight gain will become more apparent in other areas of the body where more fat cells are present. So, gaining weight won’t put you back to square one, per se, but it could give you a different area of the body to fixate on.

Over time, the effects will also soften as the ageing process continues and skin and other tissues start to sag. This is unavoidable but will not occur overnight. The area(s) you have had liposuction will remain looking better, but the effectiveness will wear off as the years creep by.

Optimising the look

It is very important to follow guidance and instructions of your cosmetic surgeon after the surgery. Eating well and exercising regularly are recommended, as is drinking lots of water to ensure you’re well hydrated. Wear a specially-designed compression garment which will help with the healing process and help produce optimal results.

Liposuction is regarded as a permanent fix, but the effects can be diminished if you do not take good care of your post-surgery body. During your liposuction consultation, Mr Alan Park will discuss how best to look after your lipo results. Call 01926 436341 to find out more.

eyelid lift

The eyelid lift is in top 5 cosmetic surgery procedures last year

The latest figures released from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons revealed the most popular cosmetic surgery procedures in the US last year. Cosmetic surgery procedures to reshape the breasts and body, such as the breast augmentation, liposuction and tummy tuck were all very popular, but the eyelid lift, known medically as a blepharoplasty, is the only facial rejuvenation procedure to make the top five.

The delicate skin around the eyes is one of the first areas of the face to show the signs of ageing and sagging upper eyelids or marked bags beneath the eyes can make a person look older, tired or even angry. The rise in popularity of the eyelid lift is in part due to the knowledge that eyelid surgery can address these ageing concerns and often affect a dramatic rejuvenation.

How ageing affects the eye area

As we age, our skin starts to lose its elasticity and our muscles slacken. On the upper eyelids, this means that loose skin collects in folds and creases and as well as aesthetic concerns, some patients find that their eyesight can even be affected. As the muscles that surround the eye weaken, the natural fat pockets beneath the eyes can bulge and protrude, forming eye bags.

What does eyelid lift surgery entail?

The blepharoplasty procedure can be performed on either the upper or lower eyelids or both together in one procedure. It is typically performed under a general anaesthetic and on the upper lids, Mr Alan Park will make incisions that follow the natural creases of the upper lids. On the lower lids, the incision can be made either just below the lashes in the lower lids or through the inside of the lower lid.

Excess fat, sagging skin and lax muscles can all be tightened or removed through these incisions and then why are closed with sutures. The skin around the eyes is thinner than elsewhere on the face and typically heals very well.

Mr Alan Park will discuss the procedure in full during your blepharoplasty consultation and also advise you on whether other facial rejuvenation procedures such as a brow lift might be more appropriate to address your ageing concerns. Call 01926 436341 to arrange your cosmetic surgery consultation.

tummy tuck results

Satisfaction with tummy tuck results not the only factor affecting positive reviews

A tummy tuck or abdominoplasty can truly be a transforming cosmetic surgery procedure – patients typically turn to surgery when they have tried and failed to improve the appearance of the abdomen through diet and exercise alone. Whether due to weight fluctuations, pregnancy or the ageing process, patients will typically complain of loss of muscle tone, sagging skin and stubborn pockets of fat.

During an abdominoplasty, your plastic surgeon will tighten and reposition the muscles that stretch the length of the abdominal wall, remove excess skin and fat and move the belly button into a more aesthetically pleasing position if required. Results can be dramatic which is why it’s not surprising that a new study into tummy tuck reviews has found that satisfaction with the aesthetic outcome is the main factor in leaving a positive or negative online review.

Published in the March issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, the journal of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), the study analysed ratings on the review sites Google, Yelp and RealSelf.

Tummy tuck results are a critical factor

Led by plastic surgeon Dr Joh Kim of Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, researchers looked at nearly 800 online reviews of an abdominoplasty procedure. Themes were identified that contributed to patient satisfaction, including aesthetic outcome which was the ‘dominant driver’ of positive reviews. In fact, no patient that reported that they were happy with the results left a negative review.

However, tummy tuck results were not the only factor that was identified.

Patient care is also essential

Other important factors that emerged from the reviews were the interactions patients had with clinic staff and the post-operative aftercare their plastic surgeon provided. Interestingly, surgical complications were of less importance and patients that experienced cosmetic problems or complications yet received satisfactory follow-up care still left positive reviews in general.

The good news was that across the three sites, 86% of reviews were overwhelmingly positive, while only 14% were negative. If you’d like to find out what tummy tuck results you could expect, call 01926 436341‬ to arrange a consultation with Mr Alan Park at his Warwickshire cosmetic surgery clinic.

breast reduction recovery

Breast reduction recovery – the first few weeks

Breast reduction surgery is growing in popularity in the UK and is often considered by those who are dissatisfied with the size, shape or positioning of their breasts, or who are suffering secondary issues as a result of the mass of their breasts, such as back, shoulder or neck ache. Many who chose this procedure also find that their self-confidence is being affected by the size and shape of their chest in relation to the rest of their body.

A breast reduction can take up to six hours to perform the operation and is quite a significant procedure involving the removal of excess tissue, fat and skin from the breasts, repositioning the nipple and reshaping the remaining breast tissue. If this operation is something you are considering, here’s what you need to know about what to expect from the operation and the immediate recovery period.

Breast reduction recovery: you will feel sore straight afterwards

Owing to the nature of the operation and the amount of work required to remove part of the natural breasts, reshape and reposition them, you will feel sore once you wake up from the anaesthetic. There will be some degree of fluid retention so you will be hooked up to tubes which drain the excess fluids, which is important to keep the swelling to a minimum. Your breasts will be bruised and swollen underneath the bandages but you will be given pain relief to help manage this initially and you should expect to remain in hospital for a few days.

Breast reduction recovery: it takes longer to recover from a reduction than an enlargement

The healing process will take longer for this type of operation; it is usually several months before your breasts are fully healed. You will need to rest properly for the first week or so and then gently get back to normal activities, making sure that you don’t overdo it. Within three weeks or so you should be feeling much better and able to do most of the things you could do pre-operatively. Take it easy with regards to sports and always check with your surgeon first if you have any concerns.

Sports which are high impact (racket sports for example) should be eased back into gently but only once your breasts have had sufficient healing time, which for many will be a minimum of four to six weeks.

Breast reduction recovery: adapting your lingerie

As with those who have had their breasts enlarged, special supportive underwear is recommended (this is worn in the day and the night) to help give your breasts sufficient support. This type of underwear will also be much more comfortable while you are healing as it is specially designed for support and comfort.

If you have more questions about the breast reduction recovery process, call 01926 436341‬ to arrange a consultation with Mr Alan Park at his Warwickshire cosmetic surgery clinic.

cosmetic surgery and social media

Cosmetic surgery and social media: “The average millennial will take 25,700 selfies in their lives”

That almost sounds unbelievable doesn’t it; the average millennial will take 25,700 selfies in their lifetime. This equates to one per day across their whole life. This is obviously clustered into a pocket of their lives when this really matters to them and during which the technology to take these and also platforms to share these selfies are right at their fingertips, but that is a lot of attention of people’s facial features.

It is statistics such as this that are fuelling the debate about selfies and people’s approach to taking and sharing photos of themselves. One study set out to look at this, with a focus on just how much editing young people do to the picture they take of themselves. Many people will confess to taking many attempts to get the perfect pout, the perfect eye contact, the perfect angle to the jawline… and this is just the start. Others will then apply easy filters from any number of apps that help enlarge their eyes, sharpen their contours, smooth out skin and accentuate favoured features.

Although finding a flattering angle is nothing new in the world of photography, there are concerns that some people are taking this craze a bit too far, and the quest for looking insta-perfect, could be damaging their self-confidence.

Fashion photographer Rankin is behind a project to explore the impact of imagery on our mental health, and says “it’s time to acknowledge the damaging effects that social media has on people’s self-image”. His project took photographs of 15 teenagers and gave them access to the raw files to assess how pleased they were with his work. Interestingly, he reports that “each one tinkered with their photographs, with the most common alterations being smoother skin, enhanced eyes and thinner noses. Not one left their image untouched.”

Cosmetic surgery and social media

The desire to filter and tweak imagery correlates with the interest in these areas is the cosmetic surgery industry too. There has been continued interest in procedures that smooth and firm the skin (which can be done surgically, or non-surgically, depending on what patients are looking to achieve) and also the procedures such as eyebrow lifts, fixing crows’ feet and removing bags from under the eyes.

The ability to tweak these things with a filter is one thing, but for many people being able to fix them with a little bit of help from a cosmetic surgeon is very appealing. It offers a longer-term fix for areas that people feel less confident with. Helping reverse the ageing process with some clever nips and tucks has been popular for many years and that trend is continuing.

A reputable plastic surgeon will always assess a patient’s mental health as part of the consultation process when they are considering any procedure and this due diligence helps ensure that the procedure is being done for the right reasons and that patients have realistic expectations about the expected outcomes.

breast augmentation recovery

What to expect after breast augmentation surgery

With any form of cosmetic surgery, it is easy to focus on what you wish to achieve and how you would like to look once you have undergone your chosen procedure(s).  All surgeries require a little bit of patience before the final results are evident, as depending on what you have had done, you will need to heal fully in the days, weeks or months following your operation.

Breast augmentation is the most popular cosmetic surgery procedure worldwide and the results are typically significantly different from how patients looked before. Here’s a guide to what to expect from the breast augmentation recovery period.

Breast augmentation recovery: immediately after

You will feel under par when you first wake from the anaesthetic – you can expect to feel groggy and a bit light-headed to begin with while the effects wear off. This is perfectly normal. Some people feel a bit nauseous too and if this continues you can be given anti-nausea tablets to help ease this. You’ll feel tired and sore and the skin on your chest will feel tight because of the swelling.

Breast augmentation recovery: it will take a little time for the results to ‘settle’

You’ll be excited to look down and see what your breasts look like, so be aware that to begin with they will be swollen and bruised from the surgery. Depending on how fast your body heals, the extent of the surgery and the type of implants you have chosen, this will usually begin to disappear in two to four weeks.

Breast augmentation recovery: special underwear will be required

It is important that you wear a special ‘surgical support bra’ that is designed to work around your operation and to help your breasts heal most effectively. Very much like nursing bras for breastfeeding mums, these surgical support bras will need to be worn in the night time as well as the day and are usually recommended for at least four weeks after the operation. They help give your recovering breasts the support and comfort that they need to begin with.

Breast augmentation recovery: the healing process

Patients typically have one night in hospital following surgery such as this, but some may choose to go home on the same day. The advice is to take it easy for the first few weeks. If you wish to begin exercising again, start with something gentle like walking, but wait a couple of weeks before you do this and take it easy. You should build up gradually and you should soon find you’re healing well. You should be able to exercise normally after around six to eight weeks.

If you have more questions about the breast augmentation recovery process, call 01926 436341 to arrange a consultation with Mr Alan Park at his Warwickshire cosmetic surgery clinic.