What are the Nasolabial Folds?
Nasolabial Folds are the deep wrinkles or lines that form from the bottom of your nose right up to the corners of the mouth. Although they are very common, sometimes their severity can vary. Everyone has them, some are less prominent while others are not.
These laugh or smile lines are more noticeable when someone smiles, except for newborn babies whose faces are paralysed because of medical conditions. These Nasolabial Folds are made of dense bundles of fibrous tissues and muscles. Also, as your skin gets saggy and thin, you are more likely to notice your folds.
What causes Nasolabial Folds?
The first thing you have to know about Nasolabial Folds is that they are a normal part of the human anatomy. It is not a medical condition or a sign of ageing. However, as we age, these lines tend to get deeper and also sag. Some develop these lines that extend down to the chin which are then referred to as marionette lines.
However, some factors that do contribute to the folds becoming more noticeable are:
- Loss of collagen as we age. It makes the skin look thin and weak
- Exposure of the sun. The sun damages the skin and causes wrinkles and changes in the texture of the skin. The UV rays break down the collagen and elastin fibres in your skin.
- Fat loss. When you lose fat, your cheeks along with the nearby regions appear much saggy.
- Extreme exposure to environmental pollutants
- Smoking breaks down the elastin fibres in your skin.
- Side sleeping causes one or both of your folds to appear more prominent.
- Dehydrated skin
Can Nasolabial Folds be avoided?
It is advised that we use sun protection as it is the key to younger-looking skin. In this case, it also helps the development of the Nasolabial Folds. Experts from the American Academy of Dermatology have recommended the religious daily use of sunscreen. This is because sunscreen helps you by protecting your skin from the harmful UV rays. Whether you are out and exposed to sunlight or even working from home near a window or even driving.
In addition to that, moisturising skincare products also helps in reducing the lines and also the overall quality of your skin. Again, there are expert recommendations that you use skincare products that contain antioxidants like Vitamin C to aid in protecting the elastin and the collagen in your skin.
Also, skincare products that are infused with retinal is also known to aid in the boosting of the production of skin cells as well as maintaining the skin to look youthful and supple. However, do take note that it is advised to use sunscreen and moisturiser when you use products with retinol. This is because products with retinol drys your skin and make it more exposed to sun damage.
Exercises for Nasolabial Folds
Just like the muscles in our body, even the muscles of our face can be toned. Much stronger facial muscles make it easier to control facial expressions. Also, when you smile often, your Nasolabial Folds become more evident. However, that should not prevent you from smiling or laughing as it poses positive effects on your mental health.
There are studies that show facial exercises have the ability to strengthen the muscles that are surrounding the folds and make them less evident. Hence, here are a few exercises that would help your folds look less prominent.
- Pucker your lips into a pouting motion, then pull the corners of your mouth out. Hold this for about 15 seconds. Repeat this 4 to 5 times a day.
- Picker the lips in an upward motion as if you were to kiss the ceiling. Then, hold this for 15 seconds and repeat it about 4 to 5 times a day.
- Open your mouth slightly, then pull the corners of your mouth with both your index fingers further apart. Hold this for about 2 to 3 seconds and repeat it at least 25 to 50 times.
Nasolabial Folds Treatments
Dermal fillers are the most common aesthetic treatments that are used widely when it comes to plumping your smile lines. Why fillers are used is because of the fat, bone loss and muscle at the Nasolabial Fold.
When we get older, our soft tissue and maxillary bone shrink in size. Hence, with no proper bone foundation beneath the Nasolabial Fold, the lines would look more evident.
That is why volumising fillers are injected deep in the Nasolabial Folds to mimic the original bone to support the soft tissues that are above, then reducing the appearances of the lines.
The usual brands of the hyaluronic acid fillers are Stylage, Juvederm, Restylane, Belotero and Teosyal. On the other hand, regenerative fillers tha tcontain PDRN like Rejuran fillers are also used to treat these folds.
Dermal fillers to treat Nasolabial Folds costs from $500 to about $1000, per syringe
As the sagging of the skin is another factor for these folds, another factor is also heavier cheek fats. You can consider treatments that lift the skin that sags along with the fats with machine-based skin tightening treatments such as HIFU (high intensity focused ultrasound) and radiofrequency.
For added effectiveness and visible results, both HIFU and fillers are sometimes combined. After the HIFU skin tightening, fillers that then used to camouflage the differences in depth between the Nasolabial Folds and the overhanging of cheek fats.
The cost of HIFU for Nasolabial Folds starts from $450
Botox is used to relax your facial muscles that make the folds disappear. The accurate amount of botox should be used as the facial muscles around the region of your mouth are small. The wrong placement might result in an uneven smile.
The cost of botox for Nasolabial Folds starts from $350
These lasers help improve the folds by collagen stimulation at the superficial parts of your skin. At times, your dermatologist may also combine other treatments like HIFU and dermal fillers with these lasers to give you the desired and almost-perfect results you look forward to.
The costs of fractional lasers for Nasolabial Folds costs from $500 per session