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Address Wrinkles & Tighten Skin at Our Albuquerque, NM, Practice for a More Contoured, Youthful Appearance

Before talking about the Thermage® treatment available in Albuquerque at Western Dermatology Consultants, we should talk about wrinkles. As much as we wish they were a minor, isolated problem, wrinkles aren't limited to one area. They can form around the eyes, elsewhere on the face, and all over the body.

One of the root causes of these issues is the reduced production of collagen in the skin as we age. As one of the skin's fundamental building blocks, collagen provides support and structure — and as it starts to diminish, firmness and elasticity are reduced.

That's where Thermage® comes in. The safe, non-surgical, non-invasive, heat-based treatment, which makes use of radiofrequency energy, improves the look of skin that is loose or saggy by inducing collagen remodeling that tightens, smooths, and contours — and it does so quickly and with minimal downtime required afterward.

Talk to the team at Western Dermatology Consultants about Thermage® in Albuquerque. Speak to someone over the phone by calling 505-855-9267, or visit us online to schedule a complimentary consultation.

Which Areas Can Thermage® Improve?

The FDA-cleared Thermage® radiofrequency device can be used to de-wrinkle, tighten, and remove unwanted lumps and dimples in the skin at these areas:

  • Middle and lower face: Besides wrinkles and fine lines, the collagen stimulation from Thermage® can improve the overall health of the skin and address several concerns of the aging process in this area, such as the jowls, flattened or deflated cheeks, and the dreaded "turkey neck" or double chin appearance caused by sagging skin.
  • Eyelids and brow line: Lax skin can result in hooding of the upper eyelids, descent and flattening of the eyebrows, undereye bags, and wrinkles. Reducing these concerns can result in a much more refreshed, alert appearance.
  • Full body: Aging can also affect the skin all over the body. It can become crepey and lax, and cellulite can become more pronounced over the years. Thermage® is an effective way to smooth the skin and make the body look more toned.

At our practice, as the radiofrequency is focused to a specific area at a time, Thermage® treatments are individualized to your needs. Because it requires little to no downtime, it is a very convenient and affordable alternative to surgery for patients who would like to experience skin tightening benefits.

Thermage® is not recommended for individuals with cardiac pacemakers or other types of active implants. Please let us know if you have one of these, and we will work on formulating with you the safest possible treatment protocol that might best achieve your goals for treatment.

What to Expect from a Thermage® Treatment Session

The length of a Thermage® treatment session in Albuquerque varies depending on the person and the specific regions to be treated. If treatment areas are more numerous, you may also wish to come in for multiple sessions. Many patients who would like to continue to maintain or enhance their results long term also choose to receive maintenance treatments over time.

A session that focuses on the eyes or face would not run for as long as one that focuses on a region with more surface area elsewhere on the body (such as the thighs), so the duration of each session can vary depending on the areas being treated. Typically, it takes about 45 minutes to complete a treatment session with Thermage® for the eyelid/eyebrow or face area, and about 90 minutes for larger areas of the body.

Since Thermage® makes use of radiofrequency energy, the aesthetic specialist who applies it will use a handheld device to deliver that energy directly into whatever area needs it. There are four main steps the Thermage® process entails:

  • First, the device cools the skin (i.e. "cryogen delivery") directly where it will be most beneficial. As the device starts to work, you may feel a slight vibrating sensation. Discomfort during Thermage® treatment is mild to moderate and is localized to the treatment area, but the controlled cooling cycles minimize this significantly.
  • Second, after the skin has been cooled to increase comfort, the specially designed tip of the device is pressed against the surface of the area to be treated.
  • Third — and most importantly — radiofrequency energy begins to work its way into the tissue, which responds to the heating. The collagen in the deeper layer of skin is remodeled, a process that will smooth out skin that is wrinkled, even out bulges and dimples alike, and provide better overall definition.
  • Finally, the skin is cooled again, which wraps up the treatment.

Recovery & Results After Thermage®

Side effects from Thermage® tend to be mild to moderate and generally resolve on their own. The most common ones include swelling and altered sensation or numbness.

The results of a session can be visible in as soon as a single day, though the collagen remodeling process can continue for up to six months (new collagen is produced, which results in thickening of the skin's collagen matrix), providing extended benefits that continue to improve for up to half a year. The final results can last for years beyond that.

Alternative or Complementary Treatments to Thermage®

As mentioned earlier, Thermage® can tighten lax skin that contributes to the look of a double skin. However, if the cause is a stubborn deposit of fat under the chin (i.e. submental fat), then fat reduction treatments such as Kybella® or CoolSculpting® may be more appropriate.

While CoolSculpting® performed under the skin can also result in some skin tightening benefit, patients who present with both submental fat and skin laxity may find that an individualized combination of CoolSculpting® or Kybella® with Thermage® may best achieve their treatment goals.

While Thermage® is one of our most comprehensive treatments to address cosmetic issues resulting from skin laxity, patients may find that there are very specific skin concerns they would like to target, or that age-related volume loss is something they would like to address.

Static wrinkles and facial folds (such as nasolabial folds) can be softened, and volume can be boosted in areas, with hyaluronic acid-based dermal fillers such as Juvederm® and Volbella®. Dynamic wrinkles caused by repeated muscle movements (such as frown lines between the eyebrows or horizontal forehead lines) can be prevented or treated with neuromodulators such as BOTOX® Cosmetic and Dysport®.

Laser or light-based treatments such as fractional skin resurfacing and IPL photofacials are also better suited to treating pigmentation, complexion, or textural skin concerns, and these may be performed as part of a custom skin care package that is comprehensive yet targeted. No matter your concerns, our team strives to recommend only those procedures that can best achieve your treatment goals.

Thermage® is a popular wrinkle-fighting treatment in Albuquerque at Western Dermatology Consultants. Call 505-855-9267 to learn more. You can also contact our practice online, and set up a free consultation to have more of your skin care questions addressed.