Buccal Fat Reduction
Well-defined cheekbones are an attractive feature of any face. Unfortunately, genetics and weight gain can hide our natural facial contours, causing our cheeks to appear overly full or even chubby. Our plastic surgeons perform buccal fat reduction to reduce facial fat for a slimmer, more angled face.
What is buccal fat reduction?
Buccal fat reduction, also known as cheek reduction surgery, is a plastic surgery procedure that removes the buccal fat pads in your cheeks in order to reduce facial fullness and reveal your natural facial contours.
What are buccal fat pads?
Buccal fat pads are located on either side of the face between the cheek and jaw. The purpose of buccal fat pads is to provide cushion for the muscles and tissues of the face; however, they also store baby fat, which can give the appearance of overly full cheeks. Most people lose this baby fat as they age, but, either due to genetics or weight gain, it can sometimes persist. Even people with very low BMIs can struggle with excess facial fat and are often unable to lose it despite a healthy diet and exercise routine.
About the Procedure
Our plastic surgeons perform buccal fat reduction by making a small incision on the inside of your mouth to remove the buccal fat pad. Once removed, your incisions are closed with dissolvable sutures. There is no visible scar. This 30-minute procedure is performed in our office operating room under local anesthesia, so you will not feel any pain during the procedure.
Is buccal fat removal safe?
While all surgery carries some inherent risk, buccal fat removal is a relatively safe and easy procedure with minimal downtime. However, before you choose to undergo buccal fat removal, it’s important to understand that the removal of cheek fat may impact the way you age. ( MORE HERE ) This is because we naturally lose volume in our face as we age, and buccal fat removal could exacerbate the appearance of this fat loss, potentially causing cheeks to look gaunt. If you have a particularly thin or narrow face, this is especially pertinent.
Our surgeons can help you determine if you’re a good candidate for buccal fat removal during your
What is recovery like from buccal fat removal?
Recovery from buccal fat removal typically takes 2-3 weeks, with full results appearing after 1-2 months. Our plastic surgeons will give you a special mouthwash to use to prevent infection after your surgery, and advise you to avoid touching your sutures with your tongue while healing. You may also need to eat a soft diet for several days following the procedure.
It is common for patients to experience some bruising and swelling in the cheeks for the first few weeks following your procedure, but this should quickly subside.
Am I a good candidate for buccal fat removal?
You may be a good candidate for buccal fat removal if you:
Are unhappy with the fullness of your cheeks
Are you a healthy non-smoker at your ideal weight
Have realistic expectations of your procedure
You may not be a good candidate for buccal fat removal if you:
Are older and have advanced signs of facial aging, such as jowling
Have a naturally slim face
Have progressive hemifacial atrophy (Parry-Romberg syndrome)
Learn more about how buccal fat reduction can highlight your facial contours—schedule a personal consultation online or call (803) 799-3223 today.