Collagen injections are quite popular as a way to get back some of the youthful looks you once had. The human body naturally makes collagen fibers, which are important components of connective tissues. Collagen is actually a protein molecule that consists of three polypeptide chains that are most often arranged into a helical structure.
The collagen protein is made in the body by special cells called fibroblasts, and it is most prevalent and numerous in the skin and connective tissue (such as tendons); the collagen gives a certain amount of strength but also some flexibility to the structures where it is found.
The idea behind collagen injections is to replace the collagen that we lose as we age. As we get older our skin loses much of the flexibility and strength that it once had, with the result we start to see fine lines and wrinkles and skin may become loose and saggy. The face is usually the first part of the body where aging is most noticeable and most visible to the rest of the world.
Collagen injections into the face can help you to look younger and it also helps to trap moisture which also makes the skin look younger.
How are collagen injections done?
The collagen is injected into the skin using a needle, and the process is thus minimally invasive and does not take very long to perform. The results are often pleasing but they are not permanent and it lasts for anywhere from three to twelve months. After a while you would need to have injections done again.
Collagen injections are also a good way to treat scars that may be present on the skin due to some procedure or injury. Collagen injections work well for most people but it is important to choose a reputable clinic which has a good safety record since even though this is a minor procedure, you do not want to risk getting an infection from the injection site.
Can other substances be used instead of collagen?
Some practitioners use fat instead of collagen. Usually the person’s own body fat is used. The fat is first extracted and then prepared for re-injection where it is needed. There are advantages to this process and it also gives good results. Fat injections to treat the skin are referred to as microlipoinjections and use only a small amount of body fat.
Botox injections are also popular and used as a way to remove wrinkles evident on the face. However, this can leave you with an appearance that is too wooden because the botulism toxin actually paralyzes fine muscles in the face.
What other options are there besides injections?
Besides collagen or fat injections, there are also cosmetic surgeries like face lifts. These are surgeries in which the tissues of the face and neck are tightened up and excess fat or skin is removed. The results are often very pleasing and surgeons can hide the incisions that they make.