Chin reduction surgery is an elective cosmetic surgery procedure that aims to reshape the bony structure of the chin. People who have congenital abnormalities and those who simply want to improve their physical appearances can seek the services of plastic surgeons who are experienced in oral and maxillofacial procedures. Chin reduction surgery can usually be performed under local anesthesia in one to two hours. The risk of complications is low and most patients fully recover from the procedure in less than six months.
A person who wants chin reduction surgery usually needs to attend a consultation with a surgeon to determine if he or she is a good candidate. Surgeons generally prefer to operate on people who are over the age of 25 to ensure that bones in their faces have stopped growing. Candidates also need to be in good overall physical and mental health to reduce the risk of complications. Finally, a surgeon can help patients develop a realistic expectation about the results of the procedure to make sure they want to follow through with it.
Before the operation, an anesthesiologist provides a sedative to relax the patient and a local injection to numb the lower half of the face. The surgeon may decide to perform the procedure through an incision behind the lower lip in the mouth or just underneath the base of the chin. After making a small cut, the surgeon moves skin, cartilage, fat, and nerve tissue to the side to gain access to the underlying bone. Using specialized saws, drills, and grinders, he or she carefully carves away excess bone and creates a smooth, round edge. Tissues are then arranged back into place and the surgical wound is sutured with stitches and glues.
A patient usually needs to stay at the hospital or surgical center for a few hours after chin reduction surgery while the sedative wears off. Nurses attend to the surgical wound as necessary, applying antibiotics and dressing it with bandages. The patient is given prescription painkillers and instructions about caring for the scar at home. Follow-up visits in the weeks after the operation can ensure the procedure was successful.
Chin reduction surgery is occasionally performed in combination with other cosmetic procedures. Patients who have excess fat in their cheeks and double chins may elect to undergo liposuction and face lifts before finishing their transformations with chin surgery. In general, patients do not need to receive additional chin work in the future, though another face lift may be considered if skin begins to sag.