As we age, starting from our mid 30’s or early 40’s, our skin starts to lose its elasticity and collagen. That will cause the skin to sag and droop. Cheeks start to fall down, eyelids and eyebrows begin to droop. The chin doesn’t look as strong as it used to. It may not be visible early on, but everything starts to look different as a whole. In short, the victory of time and gravity on the skin starts to be more evident. Because aging is more a matter of appearance, wrinkles and sags are typically one of the first complaints that people have of aging. Due to the fear of injections, needles, fillers or cosmetic surgeries, being uncertain about their results, surgery complications, unwanted and unnatural results, some people are hesitant to do any cosmetic procedures. But not all cosmetic procedures are surgical. That’s when Ultherapy comes in handy.
What is ultherapy?
Ultherapy or Ulthera is a non- surgical or non-invasive FDA-approved cosmetic procedure, used to lift, tighten and smoothen the skin of face, neck, jaw, chin, brow and decollete area (Decolette is a French term used in women’s fashion, referring to upper part of a woman’s torso, including neck, cleavage and shoulder area).
Minimally or moderately saggy skins are candidates for this treatment. Ultherapy is the only FDA-approved lifting procedure. It uses focused ultrasound to deliver focused sound energy to the skin and its deeper layers. It bypasses the surface of the skin and once the sound energy reaches the sub-dermal layers of the skin, it promotes collagen production and tissue growth, by triggering a natural response and stimulating the body to send nutrients and proteins to the certain tissues and affected areas. The results are natural because it’s the body’s naturally occurring regenerative process, stimulated by an outside trigger, reactivating natural healing process and collagen production.
How ultherapy works?
In this non-surgical mini facelift procedure, a handheld device is used. This device produces sound waves which are not in an audible range. A numbing gel is rubbed on the skin first and pain medication might be given, and then the device will be placed on the gel-rubbed areas. This gel only numbs the surface of the skin and doesn’t have a significant effect on reducing the slight pain and discomfort associated with the ultherapy process, but given that ultherapy uses a low energy level with greater ultrasound lines density, it reduces discomfort without affecting the results. Ultrasound circumvents the surface of the skin and delves into the deeper layers of the skin.
The right depth and also the right temperature is determined by using ultrasound imaging to see the layers of skin on an imaging screen, according to the thickness of the skin the sound control will be set and aimed at the areas that need to be treated with a focused treatment. When the control is set, a brief burst of energy is penetrated through the skin and reaches the denser part of the skin. Each burst only takes a fraction of a second.
Ultherapy, known as HIFU (High-Intensity Focused Ultrasound) in Iran, is a non- surgical or non-invasive FDA-approved cosmetic procedure used to lift, tighten and smoothen the skin of face, neck, jaw, chin, brow and decollete area.
The handheld device is pressed on the skin and moved from one area to another area, aiming the energy at the targeted area several times. Some of the foundational parts of the skin also absorb the energy, from that the collagen production starts. Depending on the size and location of the treatment area, the treatment session lasts no more than 60 minutes.
Who are ultherapy candidates?
A good ultherapy candidate is a person with mild to moderate skin sagging, laxity and aging. The time when skin looks weak, less tight and firm. Such as mildly drooped eyelids and brow, loose skin on the neck and sagging skin under the chin, plus line and wrinkles on the chest area.
Target areas of ultherapy are mainly in the face, neck, and decollete area.
What happens after ultherapy treatment?
Immediately after the treatment, the skin may get red and swollen, which lasts for a few days after the treatment. Some flushing, mild swelling, tingling, sensitivity and bruising are natural to happen after the treatment, which recede relatively quickly. There is no need for hospital stay and downtime after the procedure, and the patient can go back to their normal daily life and work schedule. If he/she doesn’t mind going out with a red and swollen face, then they can resume their normal life activities immediately after the treatment.
Some patients may see immediate results in the first few days after the treatment. Around the second week or so, real changes begin to appear, but the real magic starts to occur in the first couple of months and becomes more evident over the next eight to twelve weeks. By the third month, most patients start to see noticeable changes on their skin. After the first few months after the treatment, the skin is prompted and stimulated to produce more collagen, as a result, old skin, including the top layer of the skin, is replaced with new tissue and smooth skin layers. The skin looks lifted, tighter and supple. The overall texture of the skin will look brighter, younger and more fresh which attracts compliments on having a refreshed skin and looks.
Pros and cons of ultherapy
- Quick treatment
- Minimal pain and discomfort:
Aside from a little bit of tingling and sensations of tiny shocks or zaps, it doesn’t have any major pain or discomfort associated with it. But if the patient has a low threshold for pain, they can ask the doctor to give them topical anesthetics before starting the procedure.
- No downtime
- No scars
- The results last for quite a long time:
Before and After ultherapy treatment
The results are long-lasting if the treatment is done on the right candidate. Usually, patients achieve the desired results with only one session of ultherapy. In some other cases, the patient decides to repeat the treatment on an annual basis to help maintain the results.
- It takes a few months to see the more evident results.
- Not effective for people with significant skin sagging:
Ultherapy is recommended to people with mild to moderate amount of sagging, skin laxity and signs of aging on the skin. In this case, ultherapy might not be enough and other treatments might need to be done simultaneously in order to see more evident results.
Ultherapy in Iran
Ultherapy is known as HIFU therapy in Iran. HIFU stands for “High-Intensity Focused Ultrasound”. It is done in the beauty clinics and in the same way, it’s done in other parts of the world.
Ultherapy cost in Iran
The cost of a session of ultherapy in Iran, depending on the areas in need of treatment and the degree of skin sagging, starts from $600; this is while the same procedure in the US costs you between $3000 to $5000.