As you age, your skin becomes thinner, especially on the neck. Concealing your neck with clothing like scarves or turtleneck sweaters is a common tactic, but it’s not a lasting solution. Surgical procedures come with extended recovery times, expense, and risk. That’s why many people are now turning to non-surgical neck restoring procedures like Botox, ultrasound treatments, lasers, Kybella, and more to restore the appearance of their neck.
We turned to Board Certified Washington, D.C. Facial Plastic Surgeon Dr. Michael Somenek to give us some of the latest non-invasive options for a “Turkey Gobbler” neck
Ultrasound skin tightening
Some skin tightening treatments use focused ultrasound energy, which heats skin at specific depths and locations to induce collagen production and help skin become firmer. Treatments are delivered via a handheld device, which transmits the ultrasound waves through the skin’s surface. Ultrasound technology has been used in medicine for many decades, and ultrasound skin tightening has an excellent safety profile. It is effective for older patients looking for a mini facelift without surgery and for younger patients who want to maintain their skin profile and prevent skin laxity as they age.
Radiofrequency (RF) treatments
Radiofrequency (RF) energy can also be used to heat the skin and trigger collagen production. In contrast to ultrasound, RF focuses on epidermal layers to achieve a firmer, smoother appearance. Like ultrasound treatments, RF treatments are effective for smoothing and tightening skin in older patients as well as postponing the need for a surgical lift in younger patients.
This is the anti-double chin treatment. Kybella injections are made up of a non-animal/non-human substance called deoxycholic acid, which is naturally found in our bodies. How does it work: When injected into tissue, Kybella physically destroys the cell membrane and can treat moderate to severe fat pockets. And the good news is that it destroys the fat cells for good. In other words, once your double chin has disappeared after Kybella injections, it won’t return.
How many treatments are needed: Approximately 50 injections are needed per treatment session. Most patients see results from Kybella after two to four treatment sessions. Treatments should be spaced about one month apart. Each Kybella treatment takes about 15-20 minutes in the office.
Best area to treat: Double chin
Titan utilizes a safe, infrared light to heat the dermis well below the skin’s surface. This heating can cause immediate collagen contraction resulting in tighter skin. During the procedure, the skin’s surface (epidermis) is protected through continuous cooling with the Titan handpiece. After the procedure, new collagen growth results in further tightening with the improvement of lax skin, folds and lines.
FaceTite combines both fat reduction and skin tightening techniques to help contour the face for a more toned, youthful appearance. Also known as radiofrequency assisted liposuction (RFAL), this is a minimally invasive alternative to more complex cosmetic surgeries, such as facelifts. The first step is to apply local anesthesia to the treatment area and make a small incision. Then a small device with electrodes is inserted to deliver radiofrequency waves that liquefy fat cells.
While radiofrequency waves are emitted, a separate tube suctions out the now-liquified fat. The radiofrequency portion of the procedure has a dual purpose, as the waves also help stimulate collagen fibers beneath your skin. There is no downtime with this procedure.
Michael T. Somenek MD
Board Certified Washington, D.C. Facial Plastic Surgeon
Dr. Somenek received an undergraduate degree in microbiology at the University of Miami and a medical degree at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago. He stayed on at this prestigious institution for 5 more years of postgraduate training in otolaryngology, or the study of the head and neck. He then completed an intensive fellowship in facial plastic and reconstructive surgery under the tutelage of world-renowned facial plastic surgeons Dr. J. Regan Thomas (past president of the American Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery) and Dr. Dean Toriumi at the University of Illinois in Chicago. Dr. Somenek is a member of the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. As an author of multiple peer-reviewed journal articles, textbook chapters, and presentations at national meetings, he has contributed extensively in his field.
Dr. Somenek also performs a variety of minimally invasive procedures, both surgical and non-surgical. Surgical options include facial liposuction, the endoscopic brow lift, and the S Lift. These techniques require only very small incisions but can have a dramatic effect on a person’s appearance in the hands of a qualified surgeon with a trained aesthetic eye such as Dr. Somenek. Dr. Somenek’s intensive training in the complex structures of the face, head, and neck make him stand out among plastic surgeons in Washington, D.C. He is a trainer and teacher to other physicians across the country on all injectables and frequently sees patients that need an expert opinion. Even for less invasive procedures such as BOTOX® Cosmetic injections, he can use his broad knowledge to administer precise treatments that exceed each patient’s expectations.