Introduction

In this guide we are going to tell you absolutely everything you need to know about Juvederm. This resource will be your go-to complete guide to Juvederm

All about facial lines

Facial lines or wrinkles are folds, creases, or ridges that appear in the facial skin. Wrinkles and lines typically appear as we age, but those we notice first are usually a result of our facial expressions. Your behavior and habits also influence when and how facial wrinkles appear. Dehydration, smoking, certain medications, and most of all sun damage can cause you to develop facial lines and wrinkles.

Does my genetic makeup matter

Definitely.

Physical signs of aging are a natural part of getting older, and that includes facial wrinkles and lines. Your genes affect not only when you start to age visibly but how deep and frequent your lines are. And of course your genes also impact how fair your skin is, and therefore how easily sun-damaged it is. If your parents and other relatives developed facial lines and wrinkles sooner than their peers, chances are excellent that you will too.

Does my lifestyle and career matter?

They certainly do. There are many other factors that can cause visible signs of premature aging.

Smoking is one of them; smoking reduces the supply of blood to your skin, accelerating the aging process. Exposure to many pollutants can similarly hurt your skin. Your hairstyle and clothing choices also impact your skin's aging process. Certain hairstyles shade the skin of your face (and scalp) more than others, and wearing longer sleeves and hats can offer extra protection as well.

Your job can be a factor in the aging of your skin. If you work or play outdoors, especially in full sunlight, you can expect to show facial wrinkles and lines sooner. Some examples of people who tend to show wrinkles faster include athletes who play outdoors like golfers and tennis players, farmers, fishermen, gardeners, golfers, sailors, and tanning booth employees who receive higher than normal exposure to UV light. And workers who are routinely exposed to chemicals and other environmental pollutants may experience premature aging more frequently.

Other lifestyle factors affect how you age as well. If you drive frequently during the day, you are getting more sun exposure than you think. And of course if you are someone with a very animated set of facial expressions, or if you find yourself frowning, smiling, or otherwise “set” with a certain facial expression, the skin on your face will show it.

Why does UV exposure matter?

Ultraviolet (UV) radiation is the biggest cause of premature aging because it speeds up the natural aging process. It does this by penetrating into the dermis, the deeper layer of the skin, and breaking down collagen and elastin fibers—the connective tissue that keeps your skin flexible and strong. The premature wrinkling and sagging that results is permanent without treatment.

Smoking is one of them; smoking reduces the supply of blood to your skin, accelerating the aging process. Exposure to many pollutants can similarly hurt your skin. Your hairstyle and clothing choices also impact your skin's aging process. Certain hairstyles shade the skin of your face (and scalp) more than others, and wearing longer sleeves and hats can offer extra protection as well.

As we age our skin ages with us. Aging skin gets drier and thinner. It also loses elasticity. As you might guess, this combination of changes inhibits our skin's ability to prevent itself from being damaged, and this intensifies as we get older and older. Also, as the years go by your skin produces less of the natural oils that keep your skin lubricated; the result is drier skin and more wrinkles. You also lose fat from your skin's deeper layers which causes that saggy, loose look to the skin and also makes existing lines more-pronounced.

Why does my face age so much faster?

You may wonder why you seem to have so many lines and wrinkles on your face and not in other places on your body. One key factor here is that your face is almost always exposed to the sun. If you've worn hats and sunscreen each day since you were a child you may have prevented some damage, but the fact is that our faces get exposed.

Treatment for facial lines and wrinkles

In this section we'll go over everything about the treatment options that are out there, whether treatment is right for you, and how the treatments work.

Should I seek treatment?

Seeking treatments for signs of premature aging is a very personal decision. Only you know what is right for you. Visit a trained professional to see what your options are, and decide for yourself. (See how to prepare for your visit below.)

It is often said that wrinkles are a sign of wisdom, or that smile lines or crow's-feet show that you have a good sense of humor or a happy life. However, if you don't feel so positive about your facial lines and wrinkles, you're definitely not alone. All over the world, consumers spend billions trying to fight visible signs of aging.

In some ways, trying to keep your appearance youthful can feel like a necessity. Discriminating against people aged 40 and older in the workplace is illegal—but it happens frequently. And many employers probably feel that they don't need to risk a lawsuit by asking how old you are or commenting on your age: they can see it in your face.

What are the basic treatment options for the face?

There are two basic kinds of facial wrinkles: deep furrows and surface lines. Which lines you're trying to fight makes a big difference in terms of which treatments will be most effective for you. As you might surmise, smoothing very fine lines is somewhat easier to do by more than one means. Filling in deep furrows requires specialized treatments.

Although for many of us these kinds of treatments don't feel optional, for most insurers they are. That is because even when they occur prematurely, facial lines and wrinkles are not classified as medical problems that can harm your physical health. This means that cost will almost always be an important factor in your decision making process.

Overall, the range of possible treatments can be broken down into medications (both over-the-counter and prescription) and medical procedures (from injectables to surgeries).

Medications

There is a range of over-the-counter and prescription medications intended to treat and prevent visible signs of aging.

Over-the-counter remedies take the form of wrinkle creams. Most of these are minimally, if at all, effective. The active ingredient is the factor which determines how well the product will work. Creams which contain alpha hydroxy acids, antioxidants, coenzyme Q10, copper peptides, kinetin, or retinol may afford you modest results. However, remember that the amount of active ingredients in over-the-counter creams is small, and that results from these products are almost always short-lived.

Prescription medications such as topical retinoids are designed to reduce skin roughness, improve certain uneven skin tones, and reduce fine lines and wrinkles. Derived from vitamin A, these topical medications render the patient very vulnerable to sunburn and require the use of protective measures. Other side effects can include burning sensations, dryness, irritation, itching, redness, and tingling sensations.

Surgery and other medical procedures

Juvederm is in this category as it is a non-surgical medical procedure. Here are the options.

A face lift or rhytidectomy is a kind of cosmetic surgery and probably the most drastic intervention for the face. It typically involves removal of excess fat and skin of the face and tightening of underlying tissues. After that the patient's facial skin is redraped. Swelling and bruising along with pain can be present for several weeks after surgery, and total healing times vary as with any kind of surgery. Results last 5 to 10 years.

Dermabrasion is a lot like it sounds; it is a surgical procedure which uses abrasion to wear away the top layers of the patient's skin to remove minor flaws such as fine lines, small scars, and even tattoos. The desired results often require several months of treatments. Dermabrasion produces redness, scabbing, and swelling which goes away within a few weeks. All traces of pinkness sometimes take months to fade completely.

Microdermabrasion is a similar treatment but works for more superficial problems such as very fine lines. It uses a vacuum to spray microcrystals of grit to abrade the skin and remove the top layers. This also stimulates the dermis to regenerate. This treatment offers a rejuvenated look for the skin of the face, a smoother and fresher appearance. Results last only a short time, so it must be repeated.

Light, laser, and radio resurfacing treatments all remove the outer layer of the skin and stimulate the dermis with heat. This is intended to produce more collagen which will create new skin to heal the “wound” caused by the resurfacing. This can take several months to heal.

Chemical peels are solutions of chemicals that cause dead skin to peel off. Applied to wrinkled areas, the skin beneath is typically smoother.

Botox (Botulinum Toxin Type A) is a toxin that works by blocking the chemical signals muscles need to move and contract. Therefore, when it is injected into certain facial muscles they cannot move, causing the facial skin to smooth and flatten. Botox works best for fine forehead lines, crow's feet, and frown lines between the eyes. Botox lasts about three to four months.

Soft tissue fillers are the family that Juvederm belongs to. These kinds of fillers may include collagen, fat, or, like Juvederm, hyaluronic acid. Since deeper wrinkles in the face are caused as aging causes the loss of facial fat and hyaluronic acid, the fillers are injected into the wrinkles, giving more volume to the skin in that area and smoothing and plumping out the wrinkles themselves. Bruising, redness, and swelling from the injections may temporarily occur in some patients. Treatments must be repeated; for some fillers every few months, but Juvederm typically lasts 9 to 12 months.

Juvederm in focus

In this section we want to answer every question we've ever gotten about Juvederm. Here we go.

What exactly is in the injection?

Juvederm injections contain hyaluronic gel that is smooth, not granular like some other products. The smooth consistency comes from the Hylacross technology that is used to develop Juvederm products; it results in a gel that is smoother and more malleable.

Hyaluronic acid is found naturally in the human body. It is a kind of natural sugar. Hyaluronic acid works with elastin and collagen to add more volume and smoothness to the skin of your face because it holds water in at the injection site. By functioning as a kind of natural cushion it adds that softness and youthful appearance to your facial skin. It also actually provides more support to your skin.

Some Juvederm injections, the Juvederm XC products, also contain lidocaine, a local anesthetic. This makes the injection more comfortable. In fact, both Juvederm Ultra XC and Juvederm Ultra Plus XC render the injection site numb within just seconds thanks to the 0.3% preservative-free lidocaine they contain. The Juvederm Ultra Plus products are also different in that their formulas are more highly cross-linked. This means they are even more effective at correcting and volumizing the deepest wrinkles and folds.

How does Juvederm work?

Skin that is healthy and young contains hyaluronic acid in abundance. Unfortunately, as we age, the amount of hyaluronic acid in our skin is reduced due to a number of different factors. As we lose more and more of this naturally hydrating substance, the skin of the face loses volume and structure, creating unsightly facial folds, lines, and wrinkles. The obvious solution is to replace that lost hyaluronic acid using an effective and safe dermal filler like Juvederm.

Juvederm is a wonderful choice for so many reasons. First, it is proven to be safe. It is also long lasting; in fact, according to the FDA, it is the only single treatment hyaluronic acid filler that is approved to last up to one year! Finally, the silky smooth Juvederm gel flows easily into skin of all types for a natural, smooth look for every patient.

Juvederm works so effectively because hyaluronic acid naturally and rapidly absorbs water. That's what it is designed to do! As it absorbs water it gains volume and mass. Underneath skin that is wrinkling and sagging, it adds the volume and mass to render the skin smooth and elastic again. What's more, hyaluronic acid delivers a one-two punch by grabbing elastin and collagen, making the delivery of critical nutrients to skin tissue possible.

Where can you use Juvederm most effectively?

Juvederm dermal fillers work best to correct moderate to severe facial folds and wrinkles. For example, Juvederm is frequently used to correct nasolabial folds or “smile lines,” those lines that run from the nose to the corners of the mouth. It can be used to smooth or fill in wrinkles around the eyes, nose, and mouth, It can also be used to fill in “hollow” scars such as those caused by wounds. Juvederm can be used to correct “marionette lines,” the vertical wrinkles that run from below the corners of the mouth downward to create an unpleasant resting facial expression.

Juvederm can also be used to enhance the lips and sculpt the cheekbones. Brow lifts, nose revisions, and lip lines are all correctable with these injections. You can even use these fillers to restore the more youthful shape of your face. In fact, one of the biggest benefits Juvederm has for patients is that although every person ages differently, Juvederm is flexible. It can help various problem areas on almost any patient.

About the Juvederm clinical trials

In clinical studies evaluating Juvederm for effectiveness and safety, compared to other facial fillers, Juvederm side effects, when they did occur, were similar and did not require intervention. On the other hand, the Juvederm patients saw long lasting effects much more frequently than the other patients; 88 to 90 percent of Juvederm patients maintained improvement at 24 weeks, whereas only 36 to 40 percent of the other filler patients did.

Do Juvederm injections hurt?

Like any injection, a Juvederm injection can produce mild discomfort. The injection uses a fine needle to minimize this discomfort, and some Juvederm injections include lidocaine to further minimize this discomfort. Your doctor might also choose to numb the injection site, so talk this over with him or her.

Is Juvederm safe?

Typically, Juvederm is tolerated well by its many users and of course it has been approved by the FDA. If a patient does experience a side effect, it is usually short lived and mild. Like in any other medical setting you should make sure you doctor is aware of your entire medical history, especially any allergies you might have, before trying Juvederm. Your doctor will talk to you about what you can expect from the treatment itself and afterwards and answer all of your questions.

What can I expect after my injections? Do I need to do anything special?

Within the first 24 hours, avoid:

  • alcoholic beverages
  • applying makeup
  • extensive heat or sun exposure
  • strenuous exercise

Any of the above can cause temporary itching, redness, and/or swelling at the injection site. Should this happen, use an ice pack to reduce the swelling. Ask your doctor how long you need to wait before applying makeup in the injection area.

How long does Juvederm last?

Juvederm treatments usually last 9 to 12 months. Smaller injections, usually around half the original amount, are needed for follow up procedures.

Getting ready for your appointment

Ready to give Juvederm a shot? We know how exciting it is to have a new you in the mirror! But make sure you are ready for your appointment so you get everything you need from your visit.

Know what you want to address

Your doctor is going to ask what brings you here. Can you point to specific issues you want to fix? Make sure you can. Be ready to answer these questions and others:

  • What products do you use on your skin?
  • Do you use sunscreen?
  • Do you expose your skin to sun? Did you as a younger person?
  • Do you smoke? Have you ever smoked?
  • Do you drink alcohol to excess?
  • What specifically to you hope to achieve with treatments here?
  • What is your budget for treatments?

It is always best to be honest, and if you're not sure about the answer to a question, say so. You can always find out.

Know which questions to ask

Your doctor will also ask if you have any questions. Make sure you know what to ask:

  • What are your qualifications?
  • Which products do you use? Why? Have you personally used any of them?
  • What is the best course of action for me given my goals?
  • What are my treatment options and the pros and cons of each?
  • Have these products been extensively tested and researched?
  • How satisfied are your patients with these products?
  • Do you have any examples of before and after pictures you could show me?
  • What will the treatments cost? Does medical insurance usually cover these treatments?
  • What possible side effects should I be aware of?
  • What results can I expect?
  • What is after-care like?
  • What kind of follow-up, if any will I have?
  • How often will I need to repeat the treatment?

Asking lots of questions will make you a smarter patient. Be sure you do your research before you get there, and listen carefully to what you are told.