Plastic surgery is becoming more and more popular with people age 40 and above, and Dr. Perry, who is also the author of Straight Talk About Cosmetic Surgery, routinely performs more than a dozen different kinds of plastic surgeries. Here are some of the most common procedures Dr. Perry says people have to improve their appearance:
- Liposuction: Instead of performing facelifts, Dr. Perry says he does liposuction on necks of people in their 40s so the skin retracts and the neck looks more youthful from the removal of fat.
- Botox: This is commonly used around the eyes and forehead to smooth out wrinkles. "The art of good Botox is not to make you look like you have really been paralyzed, but reducing the wrinkles without making you look funny," Dr. Perry says. "The first time I do Botox on a patient, I like to see them two weeks later and I'll adjust the Botox, because everyone does react a little bit differently." Don't get Botox around your lips—it can cause drooling and a temporary speech impediment, Dr. Perry says.
- Wrinkle fillers: Collagen is no longer routinely injected into patients because Dr. Perry says humans make antibodies against it and it has caused rheumatoid arthritis in people who have had a lot of collagen injections over the years. Hyaluronic acid, commonly known as Restylane, is the new choice wrinkle filler because the body doesn't make antibodies against it, Dr. Perry says. Restylane should never be injected around the eyes, because it can cause blindness, Dr. Perry says.
- Peels: These treatments even out skin tone and improve the appearance of fine lines. Some peels, like trichloroacetic acid or the TCA peel, remove the upper layer of skin and pigment and can quickly remove dark freckles, brown spots and other skin discolorations, Dr. Perry says. It takes five to seven days for your skin to heal after the procedure, Dr. Perry says.
- Tummy tuck: The fastest-growing plastic surgery procedure, especially among aging baby boomer women, is a tummy tuck, Dr. Perry says. "We remove the extra skin, tighten the muscle and you actually get a functional benefit from a tummy tuck, people stand up straighter," he says.
- Eye work: "The first part of the face that shows aging is the eyes," Dr. Perry says. Removing the extra skin in the upper lids and the bags in the lower lids is becoming a common procedure for people as young as 40.
- Age spot removal: Brown "age spots" on hands are a problem cosmetic surgeons are now routinely treating. "I do spot peels on those," he says. "Skin creams do work, and lasers also work, but [are] probably unnecessary."