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Secret to Youth: A New Jaw Line

By New You Editorial
Posted On Aug 08, 2011
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Thinking of getting a facelift? Maybe you should consider a jaw implant first. According to a study published in the Journal of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, facial bones—specifically the jawbone—change significantly as a person ages, contributing to an aging appearance. Howard N. Langstein, M.D. and Robert Shaw, M.D., plastic surgeons at the University of Rochester Medical Center, measured the changes occurring to face bones over time. They looked at 20 men and 20 women in each of three age groups: young (ages 20-36), middle-aged (41 to 64), and old (65 and older). As the study suggests, a two-fold approach may be needed in facial rejuvenation: Doctors would first restore structure underneath before proceeding with skin-tightening. “The jaw is the foundation of the lower face, and changes to it affect facial aesthetics,” says Dr. Langstein. “These measurements indicate a significant decline in the jaw’s volume as a person ages.” This loss of bony volume leads to saggy facial skin, a diminished chin and a weaker jaw-line definition. By understanding this aging process of facial bones, doctors can figure out new ways to create a more youthful face. “The future of facial cosmetic procedures to restore a youthful look may include methods to suspend soft tissue—such as chin and cheek implants—to rebuild the structure that time has worn away, in addition to lifting and reducing excess skin,” says Dr. Shaw.

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