Recently, I joined a seminar conducted with plastic surgeons in Wilmington on the subject of fillers. As you might or might not be aware of, fillers are the injections that are used for enhancing various facial areas and counteract the lines and wrinkles related to the aging process (and more).
Originally, fillers were used for filling in the deep creases, such as the lines that look like parentheses, which is from nasal area down to the mouth corners. However, now it is also used for increasing the volume of areas, and is not limited to lines only. For instance, fillers can fluff up your cheek bones or increase the volume of your under eye area and for eradicating dark circles. All-in-all, it was quite an interesting presentation that was followed by a demonstration performed for a volunteer patient.
The presenter who injected the fillers was quite competent and good, but I was a bit peeved at him. Filler injections have slightly thick consistencies are likely to hurt. But, fillers do not have to cause pain!
Chairman of Cleveland Clinic, Dr. James Zins, taught something during my fellowship on plastic surgery that at that time I thought was done by everyone. Dental nerve blocks were performed by him before he injected the fillers on the faces of his patients.
Like a dentist before doing dental work, we can administer xylocaine or lidocaine, in the mouth. It numbs the entire center portion of your face, the exact part where the filler is injected. Thus, if the numbing medicine is administered before injecting the fillers, you are going to feel no pain when we while injecting parentheses lines or lips.
The patients, who visit me to get filler injections, after they have had injections from another doctor, are amazed to have a pain-free experience, because I used a dental nerve block. I really cannot understand why some plastic surgeons, do not perform dental blocks. Perhaps it is because they did not have Dr. Zins to teach the procedure to them! However, there is no reason to withhold pain medicine. Being doctors it is our responsibilities to keep our patients unharmed.
The doctors who avoid dental blocks use the excuse that they mix the fillers with lidocaine to reduce the pain. But, that technique doesn’t eliminate all the pain since lidocaine is not injected before the filler and given enough time to start working. As a result, the patient ends up feeling pain from the filler’s needle for no reason other than it save the doctor some time.
While making an appointment with your doctor, do ask if the doctor will perform dental nerve blocks before injecting the filler for your own good. Try to avoid the doctor if the doctor does not do dental block, only mixes the fillers with the lidocaine, or perhaps uses a topical numbing medicine.
Trust me, Fillers are NOT supposed to hurt.