Chin implants can increase the size and projection of a chin that does not project in proportion with the forehead and mid-face. A small or recessed chin can also be described as one that seems to disappear into the neck of an individual of normal weight, rather than appearing as a distinct facial feature.
Chin (mandibular) augmentation is the surgical use of sterile synthetics or biological implants to bring the chin into better balance with your other facial features. It is very common to have chin implants when a nose job (rhinoplasty) is being done. Physicians may refer to the procedure as genioplasty. The outcome should be a balanced relationship between the structures of the face and may bolster your self-esteem.
Best Candidates for Chin Implants
A person in good health, without active diseases or any other pre-existing medical conditions and who has a chin too small for her face. Moreover, the human chin can lose projection with aging. The operation also requires patience and stability in dealing with the healing period. Because swelling may be present for months, the defined, chiseled look that patients so desire may not become evident for three to four months. There is sometimes a lull or depression after surgery and if there is already an emotional problem, this low period can develop into a more serious issue. You should also have no bone disorders and not have been on Accutane for the last six months or more. Chin implants are additionally used to correct congenital deficiencies and facial trauma.
Reasons for Chin Implant Surgery
The procedure can balance a weak, or receding, chin and make a prominent nose seem less large. A weak chin can also make your neck look overly fleshy. Usually, a chin implant provides a more harmonious balance to your face and features so you feel better about the way you look, especially in profile.
Preparing for Chin Implant Surgery
You can prepare for your Chin Implant procedure by keeping to a healthy diet, to aid strength and recovery. During your consultation you should inform your cosmetic surgeon if you smoke or take medication and you will be advised accordingly.
Chin Implant Surgery Overview
Chin augmentation surgery is a relatively simple process that involves making an incision directly above the bone and creating a pocket in which the implant may be placed. The incision may be made inside the mouth or under the chin. While making the incision inside the mouth helps to reduce the appearance of scarring, this method does increase the chance of developing an infection. Regardless of the method used, chin implant surgery generally takes one to two hours to complete and patients often remain in the hospital or surgical center for one night following the surgery.
The material used to create the implant can vary, but they are generally made from ePTFE and silicone. The implants are also available in a variety of different sizes and shapes, though they can be further customized in order to meet the individual needs of each patient.
Chin Implant Results
Permanent, but results may require several months to become fully visible. Bone and fat implants can possibly be reabsorbed into the body.
After approximately six weeks, most swelling will be gone, and you can enjoy the results of your procedure. Rigorous activity may be prohibited for the first few weeks after surgery. Normal activity can be resumed after approximately ten days.
Facial plastic surgery makes it possible to enhance your appearance and eliminate signs of premature aging that undermine self-confidence. By changing how you look, facial plastic surgery can improve your self-image.
Recovery After Chin Implant Surgery
Some swelling and perhaps bruising can occur, but this will be helped by an application of tape or other material. This tape is removed about a week after the surgery is performed. Pain and discomfort last for several days following the procedure, but this can be eased by an oral pain medication. Some facial movements, such as talking and smiling, may be difficult for several days following the surgery. It is important that you follow all of your doctor's instructions to minimize risks, and help speed your recovery.
If sutures (stitches) are used, they will be removed within a week of the surgery. Most people return to work within a week following the surgery. At first, you should avoid strenuous activities, but exercise can be resumed in about two weeks. If incisions are made inside the mouth, you may be placed on a liquid diet for several days until there is adequate healing to allow for chewing and food particles to come in contact with the stitches.
Chin Implant Post-Operative Care
After your chin augmentation surgery, you will need to have someone drive you home. You plastic surgeon's office should give you detailed instructions on your post-operative care.
Expect to experience some discomfort and swelling in the chin and jaw area for several days of your procedure. You will likely have some difficulty with smiling and talking. This is only temporary and you should feel better in a few days.
You may have some bruising around your chin and your neck. Your plastic surgeon's office will give you instructions on brushing your teeth and rinsing your mouth in such a way as to avoid irritating the area.
While recovering from chin surgery is quick compared to other types of facial cosmetic surgery procedures, there will be some restrictions on your activities for a short period after your surgery. Normally, most bruising and swelling should be better in a few days.
If the chin implant was placed using an incision in your mouth, there will probably be restrictions on the types of foods that you can eat for a few days. Soft foods, such as Jell-o or pudding may be recommended. You may also be instructed to drink meal-replacement shakes so you can meet your nutritional requirements without the need for vigorous chewing.
Stitches that are placed in the mouth are often the dissolving kind, which will dissolve in ten days to two weeks. Non-dissolving sutures will have to be removed during one of your follow-up visits to your plastic surgeon.
Risks of Chin Surgery
As with any surgery, there are risks associated with chin implant surgery. Some of the risks associated with all surgeries include:
Some of the risks that are specifically associated with chin implant surgery include:
- Asymmetrical results, which is characterized by an uneven appearance of the chin. This may occur when the tissue heals at differing rates and may require additional surgeries to correct.
- Capsular contracture, which is a rare complication characterized by the scar tissue tightening around the implant. The condition can be painful and cause distortion of the chin, requiring additional surgery to correct.
- Change in sensation, including reduced sensitivity in the area, which should return to normal within a few months
- Movement or shifting of the chin implant, which requires an additional surgery to correct
- Rejection of the implant by the body's immune system
- Rupturing of the implants, though rare, may occur and requires additional surgeries to correct
In order to reduce the possibility of experiencing side effects following chin implant surgery, it is important to take antibiotics as prescribed and to take care to avoid aggravating the area.