Skin Care

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Your skin takes on the world every day. And the world can be tough on it. Age, sun exposure, acne and genetics all can damage your skin, dulling its strength and vitality. Isn't it about time to fight back, and give yourself a little pampering with minimally invasive treatments and facial skin care in Westport, CT?

Of course, there is no shortage of beauty gimmicks, gadgets and "miracle" products out there. None of them, however, can come close to matching what board-certified cosmetic surgeon Dr. Ellen Mahony can provide.

Schedule a no-pressure consultation online with Dr. Ellen Mahony now. Or, call (203) 221-0102.

Ellen uses her considerable expertise and skill to set the standard for high quality skin care. She understands that beautiful skin is the result of three P's — preventing damage, protecting skin, and preserving with customized ongoing maintenance.

In your personal, one-on-one consultation, Ellen begins the discussion not by talking, but by listening, exceptionally and intently, to your unique situation, and to what you wish to achieve — physically, emotionally, psychologically and intellectually — by your procedure. And based on that conversation, imparting expertise that only a talented, board-certified plastic surgeon can offer her Connecticut skin care patients, she'll recommend a treatment plan from among a range of non-surgical, minimally invasive solutions, including:

Give Ellen a call at (203) 221-0102, and discover how she can improve the appearance of wrinkles, lines, sunspots, acne and discolored skin — giving you a healthier glow and a smoother, clearer complexion.

Skin Care Q & A

What factors contribute to an aging face?
The most important factors include loss or displacement of fat/soft tissue, thin lax skin, and loss of bone density and volume. When there becomes a relative disproportion of the excess skin envelope to the underlying diminished bone scaffolding, the tissue drapes over the bone.

How do injectable fillers work?
Fillers fulfill many roles. They can restore facial proportion to enhance both feminine and masculine features. They can blend together transition areas of the face creating a more unified appearance; examples include where the cheek meets the lip and where the orbit meets the cheek. Fillers can restore volume, enhance contour regions (cheek bones) and in some cases, soften deeper lines caused by the droopiness of loose skin.

Which one is best for me?
It depends on the goal of the treatment. In some cases a firmer, more structural filler may be most valuable because of its ability to contour a region and be placed in deeper tissue. In other cases, a softer, more liquid filler may be best because of the need to place it superficially such as when enhancing the lips.

Can fillers be used with a neurotoxin treatment such as BOTOX?
Yes. In fact the combination of treatments can be extremely effective in that the reduced movement in muscles treated by neurotoxins may slow the reabsorption of the fillers. Plus, the "immediate" gratification from a non-surgical procedure is very rewarding.

Who is a candidate for filler treatments?
The best results are in men and women who are physically and psychologically healthy and have realistic expectations. Because of the ability of fillers to "reshape" the face (in addition to minimizing the look of aging), an increasing number of younger people, starting in their 20s and 30s, are opting for these procedures.

How long do fillers really last?
Good question! Although some are advertised to last over 2 years, the visual reality may be a little different and a little disappointing. Many of the fillers undergo a variable amount of absorption over time so although some of the product may stick to the tissue, the rest may dissolve, necessitating more frequent injections. In other cases, the filler may create so much density and fibrous/scar tissue, that there may be visual movement of your face around the dense filler. Pick your products carefully and think long term as well as short term. Tip: aging is an active process, choose products that will age well with you. If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is too good to be true.

Are permanent or "long acting" fillers a good choice?
It depends. Fillers are not a substitute for surgery and the aging process is relentless - it never ends. It would be wise to consider early on whether surgery is an option in your future. If so, then ask Dr. Mahony to explain the types of aging changes that will not be effectively treated with non-surgical procedures so you can realistically plan ahead and not waste money.

What's the difference between BOTOX and Dysport?
The onset of action is a little quicker for Dysport; you are likely to see a reduction in lines related to animation in just a few days. BOTOX takes a bit longer to kick in, closer to a week. Dr. Mahony recommends waiting 2 weeks before considering adding more BOTOX or Dysport to the treated area to ensure that you are not over treated.

Another difference is the size of the treatment area that will be affected by these products. Dysport covers a little more "real estate" than BOTOX. As an example, the forehead area may require 6 injections of BOTOX but only 3 injections of Dysport.

What is Xeomin®?
Xeomin is similar to BOTOX, but contains no additives or surface proteins. Patients are less likely to develop a resistance. It may migrate deeper and faster than the other neurotoxins. Onset of action is 5 to 6 days. No refrigeration of this product is required.

How much neurotoxin will I need for an area of my face?
The best way to find out is to come into Dr. Mahony's office for a consultation. It is really best to see a board-certified plastic surgeon who understands the many nuances of facial anatomy, the relationships between facial muscles and the unique picture that your face presents. These days it is true that "everybody" seems to be injecting BOTOX; however, most are not injecting it well. The devil is in the details. It's important to choose a provider who confidently understands that your goals may only require a couple of units rather than a provider who talks you into overtreating (and overpaying) for an "area." When it comes to your face, the "coupon" deal may not be the best deal for you.

What's the difference between paying for an area of treatment vs. paying per unit/injection?
Dr. Mahony feels it is important to customize the treatment and fee structure to each unique individual. Consider the forehead. A younger person may have very few, shallow lines that only need 3 injections. In comparison, an older person may have many deep, etched lines that require 6 injections. If you are paying for the area, one person is probably over paying and the other is under paying for this "forehead" area. Dr. Mahony prefers to customize the treatment to each person so that you are only paying for what you actually use. You are unique and your treatment should be also! This approach almost always creates a savings for you.

What is the best age to begin using neurotoxins?
It's best to begin treatment before the lines become visible at rest; so probably when you are in your mid-30s to early 40s. Can you imagine how rested and relaxed you will look long term with the benefit of an early start? Many of our animation lines are the result of facial postures we unknowingly assume and repetitively engage out of habit. An early start with these products will tame some of this habitual movement and almost retrain our facial muscles to behave, relieving us of the haggard, worn look previously expected with aging. Finally - a chance to look as good as you feel long term!

Are there cost savings from starting neurotoxins at an earlier age?
Yes. Breaking some of the facial postural habits early on will reduce your tendency to engage those muscles as forcefully when you express yourself. Over time, this in itself, will create fewer facial lines and, ideally reduce the amount of product you require over time. As an example, in the beginning you may need 5 injections for the vertical lines between the brows. But eventually, you may only need 3. This is the level of detail that a board-certified plastic surgeon, such as Dr. Mahony, can share with you.

How often will I need these injections to maintain my good looks?
Every person is different but there is a trend. Usually the time between injections varies from 3 to 6 months. Although you may need fewer injections over time, keeping the schedule that works for you is the key to keeping that soft and supple look. Once you are off that schedule, expect the lines to recur.

Do men and women need the same amount of neurotoxin?
Usually men need more. Just as men usually have overall more muscle bulk, their facial muscles are similarly greater in bulk. For that reason, men may need more injections to get a good result.

Can neurotoxins raise my eyebrows?
Not really. However, neurotoxins can create the illusion of a higher seated brow with treatment to the muscles surrounding the eye and brow. By slightly relaxing a combination of muscles, the relationship between the outer and inner brow shifts, and the tail end of the brow may look higher. A board-certified plastic surgeon such as Dr. Mahony is best able to advise you of how successful this combination may be for you.

What should I expect at the time of my neurotoxin treatment?
Dr. Mahony will talk with you about your goals. She will clean your face and use a pencil to mark where each injection will be placed and map this in your chart for future reference. Our staff will also talk with you about your budget and explain to you the cost of the treatment, allowing you to prioritize your treatment goals. You'll be glad to know that her interest is to achieve your goal as much as is possible within your budget. The injections are done gently, with your comfort in mind...there are no surprise pokes!

You won't notice that you feel different as the neurotoxin becomes active. But over the course of several days, you will notice that your facial expressions soften.

Can I get a neck lift with neurotoxins?
Thick vertical neck bands that "pop" off the neck are a sure sign of aging. One of the simplest ways to soften that look is to inject the muscle with a small amount of neurotoxin to relax the tension. This is often referred to as the non-surgical neck lift. Once the skin becomes lax and saggy, it will be time to consider a surgical neck lift.

Will neurotoxins help get rid of my lip lines?
Yes. Tiny injections to the lip muscle will reduce the muscle tone. The lip skin is tightly adherent to the underlying muscle. The contraction of the muscle causes the vertical skin lines. Reducing the muscle tone will help the existing lines to relax and prevent formation of new, deeper lines.

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Meet Dr. Mahoney

You want a plastic surgeon with skills, experience, and compassion, who can reveal your inner beauty. You've found that in Dr. Mahony.

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