Have you ever felt self-conscious or embarrassed about your chubby, chipmunk cheeks? Buccal fat gives a round volume to the face that can be a side effect of weight or from regular genetics. Although it is a sign of youth, it can also be seen in relation to seeming overweight. Cosmetic surgeons are able to slim the cheeks and add contour through the removal of fat pads in the cheeks.
Buccal fat extraction is a fairly simple surgery that takes as little as an hour to complete under local anesthesia. A small incision that is hidden in the mouth exposes the internal cheek muscle so that buccal fat can be removed with tweezers or forceps. There is no trauma involved other than a small amount of pressure used to move the buccal fat to a position that allows the doctor to make contact. Dissolving stitches are often used to seal the short incisions once the procedure is complete.
- Greater cheekbone definition
- Dramatically thinner cheeks
- A boost of self-esteem and confidence
Expected downtime is only one week for swelling to fade and patients are able to eat solid food comfortably. It may take a total of 4 months post-operation for the patient to be able to see the permanent results of their fat removal. Infection and numbness are the most common side effects that a patient is at risk of experiencing. Always take antibiotics throughout the course prescribed and keep the mouth as clean as possible. Feeling in the area is typically restored throughout the recovery process, but in rare cases patients may experience permanent numbness.
Patients must be aware that the face is going to be thinned permanently, requiring alternative surgeries if the result is not pleasing. Fat removal from the cheeks is going to leave less fullness, which can make the skin on the face sag more than usual. A facelift or cheek fillers may create the best result when paired with a buccal fat removal procedure. Reduction of the fat pads is highly recommended over total fat removal in terms of the long-term result. A patient under the age of 30 may not realize that the skin relaxing over time causes an unhealthy, hollow look without cheek volume.
Liposuction is the other option for slimming the excess fat causing cheeks to look bulky. There is a greater chance of damage to the facial nerves through this technique, and patients are often left with visible scars. Surgeons may be more comfortable performing one technique over the other depending on the desires of the patient and current condition of their face. “Removal of the buccal pads is not a suitable procedure for each patient,” said Jason Hope physician http://www.healthgrades.com/physician/dr-jason-hope-xfdb3. “During each evaluation, the surgeon is responsible for determining the best way to slim large cheeks.”
Losing weight in the face is almost impossible without professional removal. Facial treatments, exercise, and contouring devices may provide minimal results that are not often noticeable or lasting. Consult with a plastic surgeon if chubby cheeks are causing a major disruption in your self-confidence.