For anti-aging treatments, one classic surgical solution is a facelift. However, a facelift may not be appropriate for some people or may not be preferable for those who are looking for a less invasive option. At Athena Plastic Surgery in Stuart, FL, we know that alternative treatments like PDO threads can be an excellent option for those who have moderate to severe signs of aging on the face and neck, including sagging or loose skin.
How Do PDO Threads Work?
PDO threads are an innovative treatment that works by physically lifting loose and sagging skin into a higher position. These threads are made with Polydioxanone, a special type of suture that has been used in cardiovascular surgeries for decades. The PDO suture is made of a special protein that is thinner than hair and that encourages more complete wound healing in the body.
There are a few steps for your treatment that will include topical numbing cream, thread insertion, and finally collagen production. You can expect your treatment to take about 60 minutes to complete for most moderate to severe concerns. If you are treating multiple areas of the face or neck, then your appointment may take longer.
Although PDO threads are minimally invasive, they do require the use of a hollow needle or cannula that will insert the thread into the skin. For this reason, many patients like to use a topical numbing cream to prepare the skin for treatment. The topical numbing cream is usually lidocaine or another similar numbing agent.
When the topical cream is applied to the skin, it will be allowed to sit for at least 20 to 30 minutes to activate. We will check to determine whether or not you need additional comfort measures, such as twilight sedatives, to ensure your comfort for the duration of the treatment.
The thread insertion through the hollow needle is the core of PDO treatments. Different types of threads are used for this treatment, such as smooth threads or corkscrew threads. The style of the thread used for treatment will directly determine the results you will be able to achieve. For example, some PDO threads are ideal for severe concerns, while others are more appropriate for simply lifting the skin.
The hollow needle that inserts the thread will be directed to a targeted area of skin laxity in the face. Once the thread takes hold of the sub-dermal layers of the skin, it will then be pulled taut beneath the skin and fixed to a higher position, which will then tighten the surface appearance of the skin.
After threads have been inserted into the skin in desired areas, the magic of PDO threads will begin. It may take some time for your body to respond to the special protein of these medical-grade structures, but research indicates that PDO treatments can encourage the natural production of new collagen. Because this treatment can stimulate the production of a significant amount of collagen, it is an ideal option for those who are looking to achieve natural-looking results.
What Should You Do Before Treatment?
You may be given a few instructions to follow before your appointment, such as medications or supplements you should not take. For the most part, blood-thinning medications and supplements should be avoided, including aspirin and certain herbs. Before your treatment, you should not have a laser or wax treatment within two weeks of your appointment. You may also want to stop using certain products on your skin that may irritate the skin, such as retinoids.
What Should You Do After Treatment?
After your treatment, it’s very important to not touch any area where the thread has been inserted. You may want to use cold gel compresses pressed between cotton cloth to soothe the injection sites. You should avoid hot water, saunas, excessive heat, and direct sunlight until after you have recovered.
Some people find benefit in elevating their head during slumber or sleeping on their back. You should not use makeup or irritating skincare products for at least 24 to 48 hours. We may give you more specific after-care instructions when your treatment is finished.
How Quickly Will You See Results?
Most people will be able to see the results of a PDO thread left within about three to four weeks after their treatment. This is about as long as it will take for your body to respond to the protein in the medical-grade sutures. The collagen maturation process will take at least four weeks, so your earliest results will be visible a month after your initial treatment.
These results will continue to improve as more collagen is produced in targeted areas of the face. With more time, you will notice vast improvements in your overall appearance, including more skin firmness and volume. Your final results may take as long as six to eight weeks to achieve based on the condition of your skin.
How Can You Maintain Your Results?
As with any other aesthetic treatment, you may be invested in maintaining results for as long as possible. There are several things that you’ll be able to do to ensure that your results can last for as long as possible. For example, having regular treatments or using good skincare habits can help your results last for a significant time.
The results of your threadlift will generally last for at least 18 months, although some people may be able to achieve results that last for longer based on skincare habits and their unique biology. If you want to maintain continuous results, then you should schedule annual treatments every 18 to 24 months to maintain a high collagen production that will help you look younger for longer.
The skincare products you use each day can have a huge impact on the quality and texture of your skin. For example, using anti-aging skincare products that contain collagen can maintain a tighter and more youthful texture for your skin. Your skincare products and your skincare routine should cater to the precise needs of your skin. If you aren’t sure how to build a skincare routine that addresses all of your aesthetic goals, please speak with one of our aesthetic experts for guidance.
For age-related concerns, the absolute best way to maintain your desired results is to use daily sun protection. UV rays from the sun cause visible skin aging, particularly dark spots and skin laxity. By protecting your skin from harmful sunlight, you can maintain the health of the collagen and the subdermal layers of your skin while also preventing premature skin laxity. Most people should be able to use SPF 30 to 40 to achieve adequate skin protection.
You may also want to consider maintaining your results with other aesthetic treatments. Based on your overall goals, you can use a variety of injectable and facial treatments to contour your face, tighten your skin, or replenish skin volume. For example, a thread lift is commonly used to tighten and lift the skin, while a dermal filler may be paired with your treatment to address hollow areas under the eyes or in the cheeks.
You can also use resurfacing skin treatments, including light and laser treatments, to address sun damage, blemishes, scarring, and other dark spots. By combining multiple treatments, you can achieve all of your skincare goals at one time.
When Should You Have This Treatment?
Because PDO treatment is designed to address moderate to severe signs of physical skin aging, most people will generally wait until they are between the ages of 30 and 40 to have a threadlift. This can be an ideal time for the treatment because this is the time when the collagen depletion in your skin is most obvious. Of course, you can still use this treatment even if you are over 40.
Are You a Good Candidate?
People who make the best candidates for this minimally invasive treatment include those who are contending with moderate to severe signs of skin aging. You will need to attend a consultation appointment to assess your eligibility for a threadlift.
Tighten Your Skin Without Surgery
If you want to look younger and achieve long-lasting results without using a surgical facelift, then a non-surgical treatment like PDO threads can be an excellent option for you. The results of this treatment can last for at least 18 months for most people and can be used to address moderate to severe signs of visible aging, such as skin laxity. Contact us at Athena Plastic Surgery in Stuart, FL today to schedule your consultation appointment.