By Jane Bokun
Each year as I get older, surprisingly I want to look younger.
We all know the feeling of wanting the wisdom of age, but the face and body of an 18-year-old.
It would be perfect.
We would look young, but inside we would know not to drink and drive, or send money to people we don’t know on the Internet, or marry the wrong people.
Wanting to look young is not exactly a new idea — the search for the fountain of youth has been going on for centuries. While we can’t turn the hands of time all the way back, we can look and feel more confident. There are some scientifically solid, significant advances in anti-aging skin care and chief among them is Fractional CO2 Laser Skin Resurfacing.
To help everyone out, I tried this one myself at Dr. Bethany Cataldi, a plastic surgeon and otylarologist in Munster.
I thought I would probably be alone in my brave pursuit of agelessness, but the office was filled with people wanting to get their necks lasered – myself included.
“The fractional skin resurfacing laser is the latest and most advanced type of C02 laser for improving skin conditions,” said Dr. Cataldi.
After promising the other people in the waiting room I would tell them how it went, I cautiously went to the back office for my laser treatment. I can say this: it was much like having a dental procedure. It was painful, but not as bad as I thought. It was something that was doable.
Afterward, I was able go about my day with no one noticing I had any kind of procedure at all. Immediately after the laser treatment there is icing and little pain throughout the rest of the day.
It’s clear that CO2 fractional laser therapy might be the antiaging breakthrough of the decade. When my neck healed in about two weeks, it looked like new, no brown spots or extra wrinkles.
This skin-resurfacing treatment can combine the effectiveness of traditional carbon dioxide lasers — long thought to be the best in wrinkle removal — with a new application technique that delivers powerful results without the traditionally harsh side effects.
How does it work? The natural aging process, combined with exposure to sun and pollution, destroys collagen — the main protein of connective tissue that keeps skin plump and line-free. Laser resurfacing uses beams of energy light to bore tiny holes in the skin, which works to put the body’s natural collagen production on fast-forward. Here’s what’s new: Fractional CO2 laser resurfacing does this in a way that prevents damage to the top layer of skin, offering maximum results with minimal recovery time.
“There are two types of fractional lasers – either non-ablative (the laser beams coagulate the affected tissue) or ablative – (the laser beams vaporize the affected tissue), according to Dr. Cataldi.
Next up is my favorite: BOTOX ® injections.
I have tried Botox numerous times and can say it’s quick, easy and fairly pain-free.
Locally, Dr. Gus Galante performs cosmetic surgery, Botox, fillers and more.
“There’s a lot of misinformation about Botox,” says Dr. Galante, who practices in Schererville. “It gets put out there like a Chinese telephone – if one person has a negative experience, some people use that as measuring stick – thousands of people are doing well with Botox.”
Dr. Galante says he has been working with Botox since 1995.
In other places I have lived, we would have Botox parties and people would get together and a nurse would administer Botox at a cheaper rate. The normal cost for Botox is about $300 and it lasts about three months. If done right, there is a moment when you’ll notice you look really great – no wrinkles, just a younger look.
Dr. Galante agrees with the younger look, but disagrees with administering drugs in a party setting.
“People who use a product that is not government approved can have complications,” he says.
“It gives a bad name to a very excellent product.”
“There are many people who use paraprofessionals,” he says. “A surgeon knows exactly where those muscles are and ethically it’s not a great idea. There’s no real medical history taken and it should be determined if people are good candidates for the Botox procedure. People can give their consent and not understand what’s being done.”
As more and more women and men try Botox Cosmetic in Indiana, it’s quickly becoming our top non-surgical procedure,” according to Dr. Galante’s website. “This truly revolutionary wrinkle buster actually lives up to the Hollywood hype by eliminating fine lines and wrinkles. The simple injections are quick and easy, and no recovery time is required. BOTOX can also reduce migraine headaches and excessive sweating of the palms and underarms. Dr. Galante also performs the Botox procedure to smooth frown lines, crow’s feet and forehead wrinkles.
Last, but not least, is the Lifestyle Lift and Dr. Sreekant Cherukuri, MD, in Merrillville.
The Lifestyle Lift can significantly improve a double chin. Basically, for Dr. Cherukuri, it’s a noninvasive operation for reshaping one’s aging jowls and neck.
With this procedure scars are limited because Dr.Cherukuri goes just under the skin. Most patients are awake during this noninvasive procedure, but some, according to Dr. Cherukuri’s office, opt for a twilight sleep.
According to Dr Cherukuri. A northwest Indiana physician and his website, “it’s a mini-facelift that is an excellent alternative to a full facelift and gives an overall lift to the neck and lower third of the face. It focuses primarily on trouble spots such as the neck, jowls, mid-face and the lines around the nose and mouth. It is called the Weekend Lift because that is the approximate duration for post-operative recovery.”
Those who are Lifestyle Lift-curious can call for one of Dr. Cherukuri’s Evening of Beauty-Look 10 Years Younger in One Hour! The programs are held at Fitness Pointe located at 9950 Calumet Ave.in Munster.
For more information about Dr. Cherukuri’s free programs call 219-836-3477 or toll free 866‑836-3477. For information on other programs offered by Community Healthcare System access the website at http://www.comhs.org.