Chin enhancement is currently one of the most popular medical aesthetic procedures. The reason for that is the pressure to have a well proportioned and beautiful face. But how do you explain what it is?
A beautiful face is one of those things that defies explanation. You know one when you see it, but it’s hard to pinpoint what makes it so attractive. Facial beauty depends on the proportion of its different elements — the forehead, eye area, nose, cheeks, mouth and chin, and the relationship they have with each other.
The chin actually plays a very important role in the balance of the face. A well-defined chin improves facial proportion, making a more harmonious profile. In the spin of the facial beauty roulette wheel, some of us get perfectly proportioned features, but most don’t. People tend to perceive those with a weak chin as not having facial symmetry. It makes the face look sunken back and can have the effect of making the nose appear larger than it actually is. A recessed chin does nothing for the definition of the jawline and neck. It can also amplify fullness under the chin, creating the optical illusion of a double chin. Fortunately for those dissatisfied with an underdeveloped chin, there’s the option of chin enhancement.
CHIN ENHANCEMENT IS ALSO KNOWN AS GENIOPLASTY OR CHIN AUGMENTATION
The goal of chin enhancement is to give the face more balance. A trained surgeon can reshape, reposition or augment a recessed or misaligned chin so as to achieve that goal. The principal way to enhance the chin is through surgery.
TYPES OF CHIN ENHANCEMENT SURGERY
A doctor has two objectives when performing a genioplasty, or chin enhancement. The first is to give the face more strength by defining or increasing the chin. A secondary goal is to correct any facial asymmetries.
She will do this by either moving the chin bone forward, moving it side to side, or by inserting an implant. A genioplasty is carried out using one of two techniques.
In a sliding genioplasty, also called an osseous genioplasty, the surgeon makes a cut under the lower lip inside the mouth. He slides the chin bone forward or to a new position that projects the chin and gives the most harmonious look. He then reattaches the bone and fixes it in the new position with small titanium plates and screws. Once he closes the incision, he will place a compression bandage. The patient has to keep it on for a period of several days.
As the name implies, the second method for enhancing or augmenting the chin is a chin implant. These implants are made from a biocompatible material. It’s usually silicone. Chin implants have a hardness and texture similar to bone, so it’s hard to tell the difference between a natural chin and one a doctor has enhanced. The surgeon will make an incision, either inside the mouth between the gum and lower lip or under the chin. She’ll create a pocket the same size as the implant. She’ll then insert the implant and ensure its placement augments the shape or size of the patient’s chin and makes it more pronounced. At her discretion, she may choose to fix the implant with a titanium screw before closing the incision.
You may wonder if one technique is better than the other. Chin implants have the advantage of being a simpler surgery with a faster recovery. A sliding genioplasty offers better long-term results. It avoids the risk of displacement of the implant. Because the bone itself is used, it also avoids the risk of rejection. However, a sliding genioplasty also presents a somewhat more uncomfortable postoperative period. There’s more bruising and swelling. The choice comes down to the skills, specialty, and opinion of the particular doctor, combined with the specific anatomy of each patient.
What to expect after chin enhancement surgery
Chin enhancement surgery takes place under either general anesthesia or local anesthesia with IV sedation. Hospitalization is not necessary. A sliding genioplasty lasts anywhere between an hour and a half and three hours. Chin implant surgery is quicker, usually taking about an hour.
After surgery, some inflammation and pain are normal. The doctor will recommend that you keep your head up for the first few days and sleep with it elevated. Swelling should subside in one to two weeks. Most patients can go back to their regular lives a week after the procedure.
There’s a non-surgical method that doctors can use to enhance the chin. It involves the injection of dermal fillers. These can correct the shape of the chin in a subtle and natural way that helps harmonize the whole facial oval as well as improve the jawline. Practitioners carry out dermal filler treatment in about 30 minutes. Many doctors prefer hyaluronic acid fillers, but there are other options such as Radiesse made from Calcium Hydroxylapatite (CaHa).
With dermal filler injections, the results are visible fairly quickly. They can last anywhere between eight and 24 months. There’s no downtime and no anesthesia, only an topical anesthetic cream for a more comfortable patient experience.
Of course, since the effect of dermal fillers isn’t permanent, you’ll need maintenance treatments every year or year and a half. On someone who needs a high degree of augmentation, fillers also won’t have the same effect as surgery.
On the other hand, if you’re thinking about enhancing your chin, dermal fillers are a great way to get your feet wet, so to speak. Getting the injections can let you preview the results without committing to something permanent. You may find that dermal fillers provide enough augmentation or definition that you can skip the surgery. Or having fillers might be the inducement you need to take the plunge and have one of the surgical procedures.
Either way, it’s important to talk to a qualified professional to discuss your expectations and any doubts or questions you may have. That way you’ll make an informed decision and be on the right path to getting results you’ll be really happy with.