A sagging jawline is one of the most common cosmetic issues directly associated with age. A combination of loose skin and fatty deposits along the underside of the jaw result in undesirable drooping tissue that can make the face appear years older than it actually is. This is colloquially called a “turkey neck.” Folds and deep creases in the neck compound this issue, often contributing to a pronounced buccula or what is commonly referred to as a “double chin.” While certain injections and superficial surface treatments can typically remedy the age-related wrinkles and fine lines seen in aging skin, sagging jowls often require a different treatment approach.
How to Correct the Underlying Problem
For many men and women, a persistent double chin is an aesthetic problem that seems an inevitable aspect of growing older. The skin of the cheeks, neck and chest becomes dramatically thinner and more fragile with age, eventually assuming the texture and appearance of finely folded crepe paper. Countless manufacturers of specialized lotions and skin-enhancing serums claim to contain ingredients that correct this issue but none of these can actually resolve the problem at its source. In cases in which the muscles and connective tissues in the jowls and neck have already fallen and collagen production has broken down entirely, cosmetic surgery of one kind or another is recommended.
Cosmetic procedures implemented to correct a sagging jawline include the following:
- Facial Liposuction
- Rhytidectomy (Facelift)
- Jawline Tuck or Neck Lift
If a full facelift is not necessary or the patient would prefer a procedure more targeted specifically to the jaw area, a tucking in of the muscles beneath the chin may offer the desired solution. This procedure pulls the loose muscle tissue that hangs beneath the chin taut with small sutures, revealing a more prominent right angle from the underside of the chin to the neck. The result is a firmer jaw and neck area overall, promoting a more youthful and refined silhouette.
Facial liposuction is performed under intravenous sedation or general anesthesia on an outpatient basis. Small (less than 1/2 inch), discreet incisions are made in the face or neck. A cannula is inserted through these small incisions and attached to a suction machine. The procedure may take an hour or more.
The results of liposuction are permanent. If you were to gain a large amount of weight, you might note rippling in the treated areas, depending on your skin elasticity.
The above procedures may be performed alone or in conjunction with one another, depending on the severity of the case. Additional cosmetic treatments may be implemented as well to further enhance the results of the surgery or surgeries performed. These include noninvasive injections, including BOTOX Cosmetic or Restylane, brow lift, chemical peels, laser therapy and comprehensive facial rejuvenation. In some cases, BOTOX may be used to soften the appearance of the platysma bands often seen in the neck, typically after the age of 40. When contracted, the bands present a visible V shape in the neck that extends to the base of the throat. Your board certified cosmetic surgeon will evaluate the condition of your facial tissues as well as inquire about your desired results in order to formulate a treatment plan customized for your needs.