There’s been a steady increase in the number of Americans who choose to have plastic surgery every year. In 2020, there were more than 2 million invasive cosmetic treatments in the country alone. However, also increasing has been the number of people who are finding non-invasive alternatives to be more appealing. The American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) reports that there were over 13 million non-surgical cosmetic procedures completed in the same period (2020). Most of these people are drawn to advantages such as lower costs, less invasive treatment, zero or minimal downtime, and quicker recovery.
If you are considering plastic surgery, this article highlights the 5 best non-invasive procedures that may be good alternatives.
BOTOX is a non-invasive cosmetic treatment that entails using neuro-modulator substances in target muscles on areas of the face. The idea is to relax these muscles and prevent them from contracting, thus helping alleviate fold lines, furrow lines, crow’s feet, and other aesthetic imperfections. It takes less than an hour (on average) to complete a single BOTOX treatment. However, optimal results are usually only evident after a couple of days. Since BOTOX is a temporary treatment, injections need to be repeated after every 6 months or so in order to maintain the results. This is the most popular non-surgical cosmetic procedure in the US. The ASPS reports that more than 4.4 million BOTOX treatments were administered in 2020.
2. Fat Grafting
While non entirely non-invasive, this is an excellent alternative to traditional plastic surgery. Fat grafting techniques entail extracting excess fat from parts of a patient body (where it is in excess) and then using it to naturally recontour or reshape other areas. Natural breast augmentation is one of the most prominent fat grafting procedures. Plastic surgeons will harvest excess fat using the process of liposuction, then purify it and carefully inject it into the breast to achieve the desired shape and volume increase. This procedure has twofold benefits in that it improves the target areas while also contouring the donor regions. Other areas where fat grafting could be used include the face and buttocks.
3. Soft Tissue Fillers
Also referred to as dermal fillers, these are artificial compounds that are injected under the skin in order to even out hollow or sunken areas. This type of non-invasive plastic surgery may be used to address a number of aesthetic concerns ranging from deep creases to depressions on areas of the face. Some common dermal fillers contain hyaluronic acid. This is a compound that is naturally found in the body and is typically used to lubricate joints. Plastic surgeons typically apply a mild anesthetic on the treatment area and then carefully inject the soft tissue filler to achieve the desired outcome. Treatments need to be repeated every 6 – 18 months in order to maintain the results. More than 3.4 million of these non-surgical cosmetic treatments were completed in 2020 alone.
Many people suffer from stubborn weight and aesthetic issue such as cellulite on parts of their body. Where lifestyle interventions such as diet and exercise do not work, liposuction and other surgical interventions may be needed. Coolsculpting is a non-surgical alternative to liposuction that employs a special machine to free and crystallize fatty cells in target areas. These cells are then naturally removed by the body, helping contour the targeted treatment area(s). Studies show that this non-surgical body contouring treatment can eliminate up to 25% of fat cells in the focus areas.
5. Laser Resurfacing
This non-surgical treatment is enabled by advances in laser technology. Plastic surgeons use specialized devices to direct energy at a specific treatment area in order to alleviate aesthetic concerns such as unwanted hair, fine lines, wrinkles, and skin pigmentation. This type of treatment has become increasingly popular with more than 997,000 procedures completed in 2020, based on data from the ASPS.
While these non-invasive treatments can be an excellent way to enhance your appearance without the need for surgery, they are not for everyone. Patients who have severe aesthetic concerns may still need to go with surgery. During your initial consultation visit at Erick Sanchez Plastic Surgery in Baton Rouge, the surgeon will help establish whether you can benefit from this kind of surgery.