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Thermage - A Miracle of Radio Waves

Aug 17, 2007
It is estimated that more than 100,000 people rush to cosmetic surgeons to undergo the common procedure of having their face lifted. In the United States, this is one of the most popular cosmetic procedures for both females and males. The reason facelifts are so popular is because the technique wipes years away from the appearance of the face. The results amount to a thoroughly younger look in the skin. But, this is not always the way individuals wish to go especially those who are afraid of having surgery.

Facelifts require incisions that are made in the skin around the scalp, forehead and around the ears. Not only does this approach offer the threat of infection and throbbing pain, but it also takes time from the things you love to do or have to accomplish. Although the procedure lasts about 1-2 hours, the aftermath takes much longer to bear. Sometimes people recuperate for about a month or so, taking time off from work to recover from their facelift.

So, what are people to do when they wish to have a more youthful facial appearance but do not want to have surgery? A current cosmetic approach toward achieving facial improvements is here and it is called Thermage.

How Thermage Treatments Work: What to Expect
As the skin ages, the collagen that gives the face its structure and youthful elasticity starts to deteriorate. This is why unsightly wrinkles and fine lines start to form in the skin. Thermage works to reenergize the skin and promote the gradual increase in newly developed collagen. Through this procedure, wrinkles are temporarily decreased and the face begins to adhere to its former, youthful structure.
When undergoing a Thermage treatment, you will become rather acquainted with a tool called ThermaCool, which is used to tighten the skin, as well as give your face that extra lift.

The ThermaCool device uses what is called the ThermaTip, which produces the RF energy needed to penetrate the skin. It is a doctor that controls how much RF energy enters the skin by weighing your personal comfort with how to provide the best results. The treatment will be conducted in a comfortable office setting.

As the ThermaTip makes contact with the skin, a high level of heat penetrates the deeper layers of collagen. Although a hefty amount of heat is used to encourage collagen growth, there is also a cooling effect that covers the outer layers. This effect also offers protection. As time passes, the skin will continue to tighten and after awhile, a more healthy, smoother-looking appearance is achieved.

Good news for health and safety conscious consumers: the ThermaCool device is approved by the FDA for the effective non-evasive treatment for wrinkles and beyond.

The Difference Between Thermage and Surgical Facelifts
Thermage is a temporary, quick, easy and convenient technique that does not cut into the skin. There is also no downtime involved with this procedure This means no lost wages from taking time off from work. Although the results of Thermage bring about healthier, younger skin, they do not last as long as a surgical facelift. But, this is a small price to pay for not cutting into your skin. Typical facelifts can last anywhere from 5 to 10 years, whereas Thermage has a shelf life of about two years. Thermage treatments still last longer than costly injectable fillers that use fat or collagen. These approaches only enhance the skin and face for only 4 to 6 months.

What About the Pain?
There is less pain with Thermage when compared to a facelift. Although you may feel a fleeting sensation of heat, the discomfort is brief. If you have sensitive skin, you may want to later apply a topical anesthetic to the treatment surface. As with the common facelift, the risk of infection or scarring is present and, depending on the skill of your surgeon, you may have paid a bundle for something that does not even meet your expectations. With Thermage, some of the potential side effects include bumps, redness, swelling and blisters; all of which will usually disappear in a couple of days.

Treatment Length
For those that are completely impatient when it comes to how long something takes, you will be delighted to know that the Thermage procedure can take as little as a couple of minutes to an hour. The time period it takes to complete a Thermage treatment is determined by how vast the facial space is. It is so simple that some people have used their lunch hour to have a Thermage treatment. For this reason, it is not uncommon to hear of this procedure being jokingly referred to as the lunch hour facelift.

Thermage Results
After having a Thermage treatment, you will immediately feel slightly tighter and smoother skin. Over time, the tightening process will continue and you will experience additional gradual changes over the course of 3 to 6 months. Depending on how fast your skin responds, increased results may occur sooner. The results are different in each and every patient. How long the treatment will last also varies per patient. You will find that the aging process is different for every person. For the maintenance of Thermage results, additional visits are needed. If not, the face will gradually slip back into the way it looked before treatment.

The Cost
For a single treatment, Thermage may cost as low as $2000 but may go up to as much as $5000. These prices may change over time, so it is best to call a qualified doctor to see what they are charging for a single procedure. Sometimes, financing is available for this face-lifting choice of treatment.

The Benefits of Using Thermage
Besides not having to deal with painful incisions to the face and taking time from everyday activities, Thermage allows patients to accomplish a tighter appearance in their skin. This is what gives the look of youthfulness to the face. For some, it is the eradication of wrinkles that proves most helpful. If your decision is to undergo a Thermage treatment, you will be pleasantly pleased with the results.
About the Author
Barry A. S. Lycka is one of North America's foremost authorities on cosmetic and laser surgery of the skin. You can find out more at http://www.barrylyckamd.com and http://www.restoringyouthonline.com.He is founder of The Ethical Cosmetic Suregery Association http://www.ecsaonline.com.
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