Lip Injections: What to Expect

Lip Injections: What to Expect

Are you unhappy with thin or asymmetrical lips? You likely already know that lip injections provide youthful fullness and balance using FDA-approved hyaluronic acid fillers.

What’s holding you back? For many patients, uncertainty and nervousness about that very first appointment keeps them from going after what they want. We’d like to help you overcome those obstacles and give you a primer on lip enhancement treatments using dermal fillers at the Laser and Skin Surgery Center of Indiana.

Let’s discuss what to expect during your consultation, treatments, and results from lip injections to help you feel more comfortable about taking the plunge and going after the look you desire.

In this article, we will explore:

Lip Injections in Indianapolis at the LASSI

The patient experience at the Laser and Skin Surgery Center of Indiana is different than other cosmetic clinics in the Indianapolis area. Other clinics in the area, like medical spas, have nurses and physician assistants performing injectables. While these providers may be skilled at what they do, their education and skills do not match the qualifications and expertise of a board-certified dermatologic surgeon. Dr. C. William Hanke administers all of our cosmetic injectables personally, ensuring the highest quality care, safety, and results for our patients.

Dr. Hanke isn’t just another board-certified dermatologic surgeon. He’s an international lecturer and leads clinical trials on injectables and other medical and cosmetic dermatology treatments.lip injections before and after

Many first-time cosmetic injectables patients aren’t aware of the different results that are achieved based on the expertise and credentials of a cosmetic dermatology provider. This is why we’ve dedicated much of our website and online messaging to patient education. Do your research up front and make sure your provider is a board-certified dermatologic surgeon with a proven track record of success with lip injections and other cosmetic fillers.

The Lip Enhancement Consultation

Every patient is required to have a full consultation with Dr. Hanke and our staff. It is during this consultation that we will work with you to determine if you are a good candidate for lip injections. We will discuss:

  • your desired results
  • realistic expectations
  • how the treatment will be performed
  • post-care instructions and follow-up appointments

In addition to these thorough discussions, Dr. Hanke will perform an examination of your lips and the area surrounding the mouth. He will check your skin health and make sure you don’t have any active infections, skin irritations, or skin lesions in the area. We will also collect information related to your current health and medical history, including:

  • prescription and over-the-counter medications
  • vitamins and supplements you’re currently taking
  • topical products you’re using
  • known allergies and sensitivities
  • family medical history

All of these details paint a picture of your unique needs as a patient and helps ensure that you receive the highest quality care and best cosmetic results while minimizing the risk of unwanted side-effects.

Remember, lip injections may be a cosmetic treatment, but they are still medical procedures. It’s important to treat this appointment like you would any other appointment with a physician.

Your Lip Injections Treatment

If Dr. Hanke and our team determine that you are a good candidate for lip injections, we will proceed with treatment. Before your filler appointment, our team will provide you with a list of instructions to follow prior to your treatment. It’s important to follow all of these instructions to ensure the best results and minimize unwanted side-effects. Instructions include, but are not limited to the following tips:

  • Avoid smoking for 24 hours prior to your appointment; try to quite smoking, as smoking speeds up aging and reduces the longevity of lip filler results
  • Do not consume alcoholic beverages for 24 hours before and after lip injections; alcohol thins the blood, increasing the risk of bruising
  • Avoid blood thinners such as aspirin

Dr. Hanke may make other recommendations based on your unique needs. Every patient is different and requires individualized care. That is what you will receive at the Laser and Skin Surgery Center of Indiana.

During your appointment, you may receive a topical numbing cream and/or ice to gently numb the area. Lip injections also contain a small amount of lidocaine to improve comfort during treatment. Once you are comfortable, Dr. Hanke will begin administering filler into and/or around the lip area, depending on your needs. Several injections may be required to give the best results. The lip injections will focus on three different aspects to achieve more beautiful lips:

  • adding volume to the lip(s)
  • shaping the lip(s)
  • smoothing out fine lines on and around the lips

During your treatment, ice is regularly applied to maintain comfort and reduce bruising and tissue swelling. Dr. Hanke will also gently mold the filler to distribute it evenly and shape the mouth, such as the highly sought after cupid’s bow.

After Your Lip Filler Appointment

After your appointment, Dr. Hanke and our staff will remind you of your aftercare instructions and your follow-up appointment to check on your progress and results. You will be instructed to call if you have any concerns or experience any unwanted side-effects. The majority of patients respond very well to lip injections, and this is because they follow the before and after care instructions provided by our team. Aftercare instructions include, but are not limited to:

  • avoiding straws and cigarettes or anything that causes you to pucker for a few days following treatment
  • avoid direct sunlight for a few days and wear sunscreen
  • avoid strenuous exercise for 24 hours

After a few weeks, you will return for a follow-up appointment so Dr. Hanke and our team can examine your results. We will discuss any concerns you have and, if necessary, add a little more lip filler to achieve the full desired results.

Results from lip injections last for 4-6 months, so repeated treatments are needed to maintain results. Most patients see a reduction in the amount of filler needed during these touch-up appointments. Dr. Hanke uses advanced techniques. The results can last 18-24 months in some patients.

Dermal Fillers Used for Lip Enhancement

lip injections resultsWe use hyaluronic acid fillers for lip injections. However, not all hyaluronic acid (HA) fillers work well for lips. Some of the more robust dermal fillers are better suited for the cheeks or folds around the nose and mouth area. Thinner, smoother fillers are better suited in and around the lips.

Dermal fillers typically used for lip injections include:

  • Juvederm Ultra XC: This HA filler, from the makers of Botox, is very good for adding more volume to the lips themselves, especially for patients with very thin lips.
  • Juvederm Volbella and Juvederm Vollure: These fillers are formulated specifically as lip injections. Their thinner, smoother formulas make them perfect for lips that need only subtle enhancement or to smooth the vertical lines around the mouth that cause thinning, aged lips.
  • Restylane-L: Similar to Juvederm Ultra XC, Restylane is suitable for more robust volume in the lips, but is often better suited for facial revolumization in other areas of the face, such as under the eyes.
  • Restylane Silk: This was the first dermal filler formulated specifically for lips; it’s smoother, thinner, and provides more natural looking results in and around the lips.

All of these HA fillers used for lip injections contain lidocaine for patient comfort and are designed and distributed by trusted pharmaceutical companies in the United States, Allergan and Galderma. All are FDA-approved for lip injections by board-certified dermatologic surgeons in patients 21 and older.

Lip Injections for Vertical Lip Lines

Vertical lip lines form as part of the natural aging process. However, puckering to drink through a straw or smoke a cigarette speeds up the appearance of these lines, also called smoker’s lines, and makes them more apparent. Vertical lip lines form on and around the lips. They make lips appear older and thinner. Before smoother dermal fillers for lips came on the market, vertical lip lines were more difficult to treat. Traditional fillers were often too robust to fill these delicate lines without overfilling the area. Botox has also been used to treat these lines; however, the newer lip fillers, like Juvederm Vollure and Volbella, and Restylane Silk, have virtually eliminated the need for Botox around the lips.

Filling vertical lip lines smooths the area on and around the lips, providing a more youthful appearance and fuller lips.

Lip Enhancement for Thin or Thinning Lips

Some patients have always wanted fuller lips, while others had full lips when they were young and have watched them become thinner due to the aging process. Either way, lip injections can make the lips fuller and younger while looking natural. This involves injections into the lips and, in some cases, around the lips. Any one of the fillers listed above could be used to enhance thin lips, depending on your unique needs and the cause of your thin lips.

Lip Injections to Improve Symmetry

If one of your lips is much thinner than the other, lip injections can help bring balance and symmetry. Usually the upper lip is much thinner than the bottom lip. Your dermatologic surgeon can add filler to the upper lip to make them symmetric while looking natural. Any one of the lip fillers mentioned above could be used for this type of lip injection treatment.

What is Hyaluronic Acid?

Our bodies produce hyaluronic acid (HA) naturally and functions to attract water within the body. In the face, HA binds with water to produce a fuller, more youthful look. The binding of water by hyaluronic acid is partially responsible for the plump cheeks and full lips we have when we’re young. As we age, the breakdown of HA and youthful proteins like collagen makes us look older. The lips thin out and cheeks become more hollow. Lines become wrinkles and folds and the skin begins to sag. This is because the breakdown of HA is not longer balanced by HA production. By reintroducing HA via injectable, water is drawn to the area for natural-looking fullness in the face and lips. Because HA is a substance our bodies already produce, most patients respond well to treatment; the body doesn’t react or reject HA fillers as readily as it did former injectables using silicone or even collagen. That’s not to say that patients cannot have negative reactions to lip injections, due to the other ingredients. However, the risk of side-effects is very small.

Safety and FDA-Approval of Lip Injections

All dermal fillers used for lip injections at the Laser and Skin Surgery Center of Indiana are FDA-approved for use in patients 21 and over. FDA-approval indicates that extensive clinical trials found that:

  1. lip injections are effective for lip augmentation and anti-aging
  2. lip injections have a low-risk for serious side-effects
  3. common side effects from lip injections are mild and clear up within a few days

It’s important to note, however, that no treatment is appropriate for all patients. Lip injections like Restylane and Juvederm require a prescription. They are not just cosmetic treatments but medical procedures as well. In medicine, nothing is one-size-fits-all. Therefore, patients who fall into the following categories are not be good candidates for a lip filler treatment:

  • allergies to lidocaine or other ingredients found in hyaluronic acid fillers
  • prior treatment with hyaluronic acid fillers that resulted in a moderate-to-severe reaction
  • history of severe allergies or anaphylaxis
  • women who are pregnant or nursing
  • patients who are using anti-coagulant medications or blood thinners

It’s important that you provide our staff and Dr. Hanke a complete list of medications and full medical history to ensure that you may safely receive lip injections. Your safety and health are our top priorities.

Cost of Lip Injections in Indianapolis

One of the most common questions asked by new lip filler patients is, “How much does it cost?” It’s an important question; however, there is no flat fee for lip injections at the LASSI. Many factors determine the cost of a lip filler treatment, including:

  • which dermal filler is right for your needs
  • how much filler is necessary to achieve results
  • expertise of your aesthetic injector*

*The last one is perhaps the most important. As stated previously, board-certified dermatologic surgeon Dr. C. William Hanke performs all cosmetic injections personally at the Laser and Skin Surgery Center of Indiana. However, other practices use non-specialty physicians and non-physician providers to perform lip augmentation. This allows them to charge less, as their providers have less experience and training. That is why we recommend that you avoid choosing a provider based on cost alone. Choose a provider who is a board-certified dermatologic surgeon (physicians who specialize in skin surgery) for the safest and best cosmetic results.

When you join us for your consultation, after a full examination is complete, we will provide you with a quote for full cost of treatment.

Schedule a Consultation in the Carmel/Indianapolis Area for Lip Injections at the LASSI

Are you ready to take the plunge and achieve the lips you’ve always wanted? Schedule a consultation with board-certified dermatologic surgeon Dr. C. William Hanke at the Laser and Skin Surgery Center of Indiana. Dr. Hanke is one of the most experienced cosmetic dermatology providers in Indiana. He frequently lectures and instructs other physicians on medical and cosmetic dermatology treatments and has led dermatology research studies for cosmetic injectables in our accredited clinical trials facility. His results speak for themselves, and we invite you to visit our practice to meet Dr. Hanke for a personalized consultation. Contact us today to get started. Our staff is ready to answer your questions and schedule an appointment that is convenient for you.

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