In his book “You're Looking Very Well,” the developmental biologist Lewis Wolpert wondered, “How can a 17 year old, like me, suddenly be 81?”
Anyone who has begun the aging process can identify with Wolpert's sense of dislocation and betrayal: Our minds, our attitudes, our hopes and dreams feel as vital as they were in our teens, but our bodies are on another track altogether. In Wolpert's day, there wasn't much to do to counter aging except try a few ineffectual face creams and then submit to the onslaught of gray hairs and wrinkles. Nowadays, though, we can begin to address and push back at aging every step of the way, from the first crinkle near the eyes or frown between the brows.
Dr. Julio Garcia, a Vegas cosmetic surgery expert, offers preventive and anti-aging treatments that can help you move from one stage of life to another with grace, vitality, and beauty. In addition to being a double-board certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Garcia is trained as an artist and also offers cutting-edge therapies such as iDDNA personalized anti-aging treatments and cell therapy. From skin care to sun protection, lasers and fillers to surgery, Dr. Garcia has a way of actively addressing most functional and aesthetic issues of the aging face.
It Starts From the Inside
When you consult with Dr. Garcia, he will learn about you as a whole person with specific physical and aesthetic needs, rather than focusing on a cluster of problems. First and foremost, he advocates a healthy lifestyle that will allow you to garner the maximum benefit from all of the therapies and treatments he offers. A diet rich in antioxidants, such as fruits and vegetables, and a varied exercise regimen are important first steps toward building and strengthening the cells of your muscles, skin and other tissues from the inside out.
Your DNA Determines Your Treatments
Dr. Garcia can also offer you a cutting-edge way of finding out what anti-aging treatments will work best for you – based on your own DNA. His clinic is one of the first in the United States to offer iDDNA, which is a revolutionary product line developed in Switzerland that uses your own genetic code to personalize creams and oral vitamin supplements to combat signs of aging.
iDDNA starts with a simple skin swab from inside your cheek. This is then sent to an independent laboratory, where they analyze the structure of your genes that affect skin aging. Dr. Garcia reviews the assessment with you and then prescribes unique formulations of skin care and supplements to improve the look and feel of your skin. Once a significant improvement has been gained, he will switch you to a less intense maintenance regimen.
Laser Resurfacing and “Lifts”
One of the most exciting developments in cosmetic dermatology has been the advent of laser technology to resolve surface irregularities such as scarring, wrinkling, hyperpigmentation and pre-cancerous lesions. It can also stimulate the production of new collagen and elastin to tighten the skin. Properly handled, laser treatments can even provide a nonsurgical facelift for women and men in the early stages of aging.
Dr. Garcia prefers the non-ablative Medlite Q-switched ND:YAG laser to heat and shrink the collagen layer of the skin to tone and rejuvenate the face. Medlite can be used to:
- Shrink pores
- Decrease fine lines
- Minimize wrinkles
- Improve acne
- Fade mild to moderate scars
Treatment with Medlite only takes about 15 minutes. The only side effects are mild redness for a few hours. You will need monthly treatments for three to six months, depending on how dramatic a change is needed. You will begin to notice an improvement and tightening in your skin within weeks of your last treatment, with full benefits apparent at about 6 to 12 months.
Your replenished and tightened skin should continue to look youthful and healthy for at least a year or two before you may need follow-up treatments. The new collagen can sometimes keep you looking lifted and refreshed for years.
Injectables and Liquid Facelifts
Whether or not you choose to use lasers, you can also rejuvenate your skin and stimulate more collagen with injectable treatments, such as dermal fillers and neuromodulators.
Neuromodulators such as Botox and Dysport can be used to relax muscles that actively cause wrinkles, including those between the brows and around the eyes. Once the muscles cease contracting, the skin smooths out and wrinkles fade away. Neuromodulators usually last about 3 to 4 months. They can also create a nonsurgical brow lift, relax bulky jaws and rectify a gummy smile.
Dermal fillers are excellent at restoring volume to the skin, filling in wrinkles, and evening out creases. Many of them also act as collagen stimulators, so that the skin stays plump and rejuvenated even after the filler has been metabolized by the body. Restylane, Juvederm, Radiesse, Artefill, Perlane and Voluma are some of the options that Dr. Garcia offers. These can last from 4 months to a year or more.
Also available is Sculptra Aesthetic, which can be used to build up the cheekbones and create a slight lift. Sculptra's benefits can last up to 2 years.
Used altogether, the dermal fillers and neuromodulators can create a “liquid facelift” by adding volume, stimulating new collagen to tighten the skin, and relaxing muscles that pull the face downward. Liquid facelifts are most effective in the earlier stages of aging. Although they must be repeated more often than a surgical facelift (months vs. years), liquid facelifts have the added benefit of improving the quality of the skin and quieting the muscles that cause persistent creasing and wrinkling. Using a liquid facelift and laser therapy together may allow you to look younger than your age for decades.
The New Plastic Surgery
When you're ready for a more permanent solution for aging, Dr. Garcia can determine if you would benefit from a facelift, mini face lift, brow lift, blepharoplasty, and/or neck lift with platysmaplasty. Surgical anti-aging procedures can make you look up to a decade younger. The effects can last 10 years or more, providing you take care of your skin and avoid the sun. Because Dr. Garcia was trained as an artist as well as a surgeon, you can be sure that your new look will be natural and rejuvenating. He may recommend combination treatments with lasers to improve the skin's texture and tone, fat grafting to restore volume to the face, and/or cheek implants to create a more elegant and uplifted look.
Dr. Garcia is also the founder of the Regenerative Medical Institute of Nevada, where he and his team offer stem-cell therapy to repair and create new tissue,including fat and muscles. He also uses growth-factor therapy to stimulate the body's natural healing process. Cell therapy can be used in conjunction with facial plastic surgery to aid in healing and to create younger, stronger skin. Cell therapy is not yet approved by the FDA and is not reimbursable. All treatments are conducted under experimental protocols.
Start Anti-Aging Now
As Wolpert lamented, we all continue to age (if we are lucky). But that doesn't mean that Time has to have the upper hand. By instituting healthy habits, a medical-grade skin-care regimen, sun protection and avoidance, and treatments from lasers to injectables to surgery, your face can reflect your inner vitality and spirit for decades to come.