Whether looking in the mirror or reviewing selfies, it’s often hard for any of us to ignore an unwanted double chin. If you are bothered by a double chin or in general have dissatisfaction with your profile, you are not definitely alone. A 2019 study from the American Society for Dermatologic Surgery found that 73% of people in the U.S. are bothered by the excess under their chin/neck. While a double chin, or submental fat, is often the result of weight gain, this isn’t always the case.
This layer of excess fat under the chin could result from age, genetics, weight, and even posture. Diet and exercise can sometimes improve the appearance of your double chin, but not always. Many people look toward double chin removal surgery as a permanent solution, but with modern technology, this surgery is no longer the only way to get rid of a double chin.
The Downsides to Double Chin Surgery
Historically, double chin surgery has been a go-to treatment option, but there are many downsides to these types of invasive procedures. When it comes to surgically removing submental fat, options include:
- Liposuction: During this procedure, a small incision is made under the chin and a tube is used to suction the fat from under the chin. The area is then contoured to create a sculpted appearance.
- Face lift or neck lift: During this procedure, fat is removed from under the chin and neck area to create a more youthful, slim appearance. Excess fat and saggy skin are surgically removed and skin is pulled back and shaped.
After these procedures, patients can expect to deal with bruising and swelling for up to fourteen days post treatment. Smokers and patients taking anti-clotting drugs may also have an increased risk of bleeding during any surgical procedure.
Other downsides of surgery include:
- Risks and possible complications from anesthesia
- Pain and discomfort
- Longer recovery time
- Potential side effects
Fortunately, there are several non-surgical double chin treatments available to remove or reduce the appearance of a double chin without the downsides associated with traditional surgery.
Non-Surgical Treatments for Double Chin Removal
CoolSculpting is an effective way to eliminate fat cells on the submental and submandibular (under the jawline) areas with no post-treatment downtime. CoolSculpting uses the process of cryolipolysis to freeze and kill stubborn fat cells, resulting in the reduction of targeted fat cells by 20% to 25% per treatment. CoolSculpting is also FDA-cleared to improve the appearance of lax tissue in the submental region.
Initial results may start to become apparent over the first few weeks following a CoolSculpting treatment as the body works to eliminate the fat cells through the lymphatic system. Full results, however, are typically seen around three to four months. While one treatment is often enough to see results, additional sessions may be needed based on your personal goals. Treatment sessions are scheduled at least one month apart.
Kybella is the only FDA-approved injectable treatment that destroys fat cells in the submental region. Kybella treatments use a series of synthetic deoxycholic acid injections to break down the unwanted pockets of fat under the chin. This helps improve the contours of your jawline and chin profile—without liposuction or surgery.
Over the weeks and months following your Kybella treatment, the body will continue to eliminate fat cells through the lymphatic system. While some patients may notice results as early as four to six weeks, full results are seen around three to four months post-treatment. For best results, two to four treatment sessions scheduled at least one month apart are typically recommended. You may need up to six sessions based on the amount and distribution of your submental fat.
WarmSculpting uses hyperthermic laser technology to penetrate the skin and heat the targeted fat cells, which are then destroyed and eliminated through the body’s lymphatic system. Each treatment session destroys up to 24% of the targeted fat cells.
Initial results may be visible as early as six weeks post-treatment. Full results are visible around 12 weeks after treatment. For best results, a minimum of two treatments scheduled at least six weeks apart is recommended.
PDO Thread Lift
A PDO thread lift uses Polydioxanone (PDO) absorbable sutures to lift and tighten the skin, while simultaneously stimulating collagen production. These absorbable threads are strategically placed under the skin to reshape the problem areas.
Patients may experience some bruising and swelling following a thread lift procedure. The PDO threads slowly dissolve within four to six months of treatment and the results can last 12 to 15 months.
Benefits of Non-Surgical Treatments
While the specific benefits will depend on your exact treatment plan, there are common benefits of non-surgical treatments which include:
- Treatments are completed in a comfortable, spa-like atmosphere
- No general anesthesia necessary: only topical local anesthesia is needed (if at all)
- Quick; usually an hour or less
- Little to no recovery time
- Reduced risk of complications
- Versatile: Can be used in conjunction with other treatments
- Less expensive than surgery
What to Expect after Undergoing a Non-Invasive Treatment to Eliminate a Double Chin
The recovery period after undergoing a non-invasive treatment to eliminate a double chin is much shorter than traditional surgical methods, but it does also depend on the individual’s customized treatment plan. With this in mind, some potential side effects of treatment may include discomfort or tenderness, redness, bruising, and swelling. These typically subside within three to seven days post-treatment.
Performed by a licensed and trained medical provider, treatment sessions are quick and typically take under an hour. Most patients report little or no pain or discomfort during or after treatment and can resume normal activities immediately following the procedure.
Although your time commitment to the procedure is not intensive, it’s important to be diligent and follow post-treatment guidelines from your medical provider. Each treatment option has varying benefits and results, and to maximize effectiveness, it’s critical you understand and participate in the comprehensive approach, from pre-treatment consultation through to at-home after care.
How to Choose Which Non-Surgical Treatment is Right for You
With all of today’s advanced medical technologies, it can be an overwhelming process to determine which double chin treatment is right for you. Fortunately, our expert team of medical providers have extensive experience using the latest non-surgical techniques to enhance the appearance of your chin and jawline. Starting with a thorough complimentary consultation, your medical provider can develop a personalized treatment plan that meets your aesthetic goals so that you can love your reflection more and feel more confident.
If you’ve been feeling self-conscious about your double chin or sagging jowls, now is a perfect time to schedule a complimentary consultation. You’ll meet with one of our award-winning medical providers and medical aestheticians to learn how we can help you achieve a more contoured and defined facial profile.