Pro Advice
April 26, 2017

7 Do’s for a Sexy Décolletage

From the PROS: For women of all ages, sallow, dull, or crepey skin can make the chest area or décolletage appear older than it is. Factor in side-sleeping where for hours at a time, your breasts are at battle with gravity leading to deeper lines in the neck and chest. Luckily, there are advancements and solutions available to bring back the glow to the beautiful feminine décolletage. Dr. Lenny Hochstein, world renowned board-certified plastic surgeon based in Miami, Florida and owner of the city’s newest state-of-the-art Hochstein MedSpa, and his team of licensed aestheticians, offer insights on how to achieve and maintain a sexy décolletage.

  1. Go topical.

There are plenty of things women can do to prevent chest area skin from aging such as applying high-quality, medical-grade skin care products. There are plenty of wrinkle creams on the market. The key is to look for ones with alpha and beta hydroxy acids, retinol, Vitamin C and E, and growth factors. These will reduce the appearance of wrinkles. “This is great for prevention and maintenance. Using creams in your 20’s and 30’s really does help skin retain elasticity and its ability to produce collagen,” explains Larisa Belyakova, Hochstein MedSpa licensed aesthetician.

  1. Consider lasers.

Lasers will certainly offer that healthy glow, since they are the most powerful tool to address both discoloration and texture imperfections.

“One of the lasers we have had success with in the chest region is the HALO treatment, the world’s first hybrid fractional laser. It’s strong! Results to skin tone and texture are visible after the first treatment,” explains Dr. Lenny Hochstein who prides himself on being incredibly selective about the results-driven treatments he offers. “The HALO is a type of a fractional laser which allows us to obtain optimal results with reduced healing time,” he adds.

There are other options as well. “The other device used for chest rejuvenation is called BBL (broad band light). This treatment is the most effective on the market for clearing up sun damage spots and reducing redness,” adds Jenya Titova, Hochstein’s certified Physician’s Assistant who vast expertise in lasers spans 12 years.

An issue of concern to women are stretch marks to the breast area. “Another laser often used on the chest area is E-matrix. This technology reduces the appearance of scars and stretch marks on the breast,” Jenya adds.

  1. Try a chemical peel and/or a microdermabrasion.

If the skin itself is supple, microdermabrasion could work very well to address skin elasticity, texture, tone and overall appearance. It’s a less expensive option than lasers. Chemical peels work at the cellular level, smoothing the fine lines in the chest area with very little downtime. There are varying strengths available so it is very important to have an experienced person administer peels. Microdermabrasion and peels are usually recommended in packages of 3 or 4, performed several weeks apart.

 Hydrafacial

 This is of the newest treatments that brings out the healthy radiance and glow to the skin of the décolletage area. “It is a high- tech equipment operated procedure that includes several steps, such as deep cleansing, exfoliation, antiaging light treatment and application of powerful antioxidants. Well hydrated and nourished skin on the chest is the immediate and lasting result of this treatment,” explains Hochstein MedSpa Licensed aesthetician, Capri Colello.

  1.  Micro-needling

Micro-needling is a process where a small roller is rolled over the skin creating tiny punctures in the top skin layer. This phase of the treatment triggers a wound healing response in the body. Collagen levels are boosted as the skin regenerates itself leading to skin thickening, scars fading and smoothing of fine lines. Peptides and antioxidant serums are applied and massaged into the skin at the end. “What’s interesting to note about micro-needling is that the skin is essentially put into a healing, rejuvenation mode lasting for several months after the first session takes place. Skin looks better over time. To maintain results it’s advised to repeat the treatment at least 3-4 times,” advises Hochstein.

  1. PRP (Platelet Rich Plasma)

Microneedling described above, can be enhanced with a very powerful collagen building treatment using your own plasma. “The treatment requires that we draw a small blood sample to extract the concentrated platelet cells out of it. These cells have a natural ability of healing by building new elastic and collagen layer. Fine lines and wrinkles on the chest respond wonderfully to this procedure, with no discomfort, side effects or downtime” says Dr. Hochstein.

  1. Get smart about sunscreen.

Regardless of what treatment option you choose optimal skin protection is key. “You go through a series of treatments. The last thing you want to do is damage skin and get into this cycle of damage, treat, damage treat,” explains Dr. Hochstein. “You can’t invest $6000 on skin treatments and think a $9.00 bottle of basic sunscreen is going to protect you,” he adds. Any physician will suggest using a sunscreen that offers broad spectrum UVA and UVB protection. “The best results are found when the patient ‘protects the procedure’ and takes preventative measures recommended by their skin care professional,” he recommends.

About the experts:

Dr. Lenny Hochstein is a board certified plastic surgeon in Miami, Florida. World renowned for his meticulous attention to detail, symmetry and overall excellence, including published scientific papers, awards, early entry directly into medical school where he graduated valedictorian; Dr. Hochstein has two decades of experience, over 12,000 surgeries with breast augmentation as his main specialty. His dual accreditation of American Board of Plastic Surgery and American Society of Plastic Surgeons speaks to his high standards and reputation of providing exceptional care to all his patients. In 2017, Dr. Lenny Hochstein added Hochstein MedSpa to his Miami practice to offer lesser invasive treatments and anti-aging solutions adhering to the same values of high standards and quality. Anyone selected to be on his team must be exceptional, credentialed and committed to offering excellent care.

Jenya Titova, board certified Physician Assistant with 12 years of experience in aesthetic field, is Dr. Hochstein’s right hand at Hochstein MediSpa. She is highly skilled in areas of laser medicine and injectable treatments. His wonderful licensed aestheticians, Larisa Belyakova and Capri Colello are also great assets of his skin care team, delivering personalized, quality-driven approach to their patients.

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April 21, 2017

Restonic Sleep Survey Shows Electronics and Exercise Have the Greatest Impact on Sleep Quality

Leader in Handcrafted Mattresses Seeks to Raise Awareness on Key Lifestyle Issues That Affect Sleep Habits

Buffalo, NY (April 21, 2017)Restonic, leader in handcrafted mattresses and high-quality sleep products since 1938, today released findings from its 2017 Sleep Survey showing that people report the use of electronics and lack of exercise have a significant impact on their quality of sleep. The company is making the insights available to help increase public knowledge about the importance of quality sleep, and common factors that plague many consumers’ sleep habits.

The Restonic Sleep Survey shows that only 14 percent of people feel they get enough sleep, with use of electronics, like smartphones and tablets, negatively affecting sleep quality. Only six percent of people who use electronics in bed say they get enough sleep. Those who limit the use of their smartphones and other electronics in bed say they get enough sleep at more than double the rate of those who don’t.

The new survey findings also revealed a clear connection between lack of exercise and sleep quality. Only 11 percent of people who don’t workout think they get enough sleep. The type of exercise also impacts sleep, as those who participate in high-impact activities like cardio, running and CrossFit report getting enough sleep at double the rate of those who engage in low-impact exercises like yoga (22 percent for CrossFit and 18 percent for cardio and running, versus only 10 percent for yoga).

“Through our Sleep Survey, we wanted to get to the heart of the factors in people’s lives that are impacting the quality of their sleep,” says Julia Rosien, brand director for Restonic. “Sleep is one of the most important things we all need biologically to recharge and help our bodies repair. While awareness is growing about how critical a restful night of sleep is, most people are still not getting enough. We hope the findings of our survey put a spotlight on those key lifestyle issues that are preventing people from getting a better night’s rest.”

The Restonic Sleep Survey polled more than 1,000 people on their sleep habits. Additional findings include:

  • Ninety-one percent of people surveyed say they wake up at least once during the night.
  • Nearly two-thirds of people (63 percent) would give up coffee or alcohol for the rest of their lives in exchange for a better night’s sleep.
  • Thirty-eight percent of women report feeling like they don’t get enough sleep compared to only 20 percent of men.
  • Women wake up more frequently in the middle of the night because of kids or pets than men (23 percent of women, versus 12 percent of men).

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, inefficient sleep is an important public health concern, especially as unhealthy sleep patterns and self-reported sleep difficulties continue to rise. Sleep insufficiency has been linked to car accidents, industrial accidents, medical errors, and can even contribute to chronic diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, depression and obesity.

Restonic was founded in 1938 to bring high-quality mattresses with better materials and greater attention to detail to consumers everywhere. Restonic mattresses can be found in fine retail stores across the nation as well as internationally. Learn more at www.restonic.com, and visit Restonic’s Sleep Blog.

About Restonic

Founded in 1938, Restonic is guided by the principle that getting a healthy night’s sleep is a right, not a privilege. This means that every Restonic mattress is crafted with better quality materials and greater attention to detail than comparably priced mattresses from competitive brands. Restonic mattresses can be found in fine retail stores nationwide, and internationally. Visit Restonic’s Sleep Blog and learn more atwww.Restonic.com, and follow Restonic on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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April 12, 2017

7 SMART NATURAL METABOLISM BOOSTERS

It’s a frustrating scenario. You eat right and exercise yet you have gained weight or cannot shed weight. You may have inherited your mom’s slow-motion metabolism, but the good news is; you’re not stuck with it. Research shows you can trick your body into burning calories more efficiently, especially if you hit the gym. “By strength-training just a couple of times a week, for example, you’ll reverse 50% of the seemingly inevitable metabolism slow-down that comes with age, says Dr. Christopher Calapai a New York City Osteopathic Physician board certified in family and anti-aging medicine. Here Dr. Calapai shares 7 Metabolism boosters that don’t require a visit to an endocrinologist or a prescription.

  1. Value food as fuel and eat.

If you want to weigh less, you’ve got to eat less, right? Wrong! If you take in too few calories, it can cause your body to lose muscle mass and decrease your metabolic rate. Plus, when you skimp on calories, your body slows the calorie burn rate to conserve the fuel it’s got. “Under-fueling is just as risky as over-fueling,” says Dr. Calapai. “In an attempt for quick, noticeable weight loss, many people wrongfully believe that eating as few calories as possible is the best solution. Not only can this lead to numerous nutritional deficiencies as the body is getting less food overall, it can actually have the opposite effect on weight loss.”

  1. Mix up your workouts.

When it comes to the best workouts for weight loss, neither weights nor cardio can completely move the needle on their own. Interval training is the best way to shed pounds, increase your metabolism, improve your cholesterol profile, and improve insulin sensitivity. Turn your favorite aerobic exercise, (running, biking, even walking) into an interval workout by adding periods of intense speed (start with 30 to 60 seconds) followed by periods of rest (normal speed) for the same amount of time. Do this six to 10 times to complete a fat-slashing workout. As you get better, slowly increase the amount of time of increased intensity.

  1. Become best friends with breakfast.

Commit to starting the day with a good breakfast. What should you be having? Morning munchies that are slow to digest and leave you feeling fuller longer. Try a mix of lean protein with complex carbohydrates and healthy fats. Fresh fruit, egg whites, steel cut oatmeal, Greek yogurt, fiber rich cereals are things to grab for. “You’re not kick starting your metabolism if you have coffee for breakfast. Skipping breakfast puts the body in starvation mode slowing your metabolism to a crawl to conserve energy,” says Dr. Calapai.

  1. Spice up your diet.

It turns out capsaicin, the compound that gives chili peppers their mouth-searing quality, can also fire up your metabolism. Eating about one tablespoon of chopped red or green chilies boosts your body’s production of heat and the activity of your sympathetic nervous system (responsible for our fight-or-flight response), according to a study published in the Journal of Nutritional Science and Vitaminology. The result is a temporary metabolism spike of about 23 percent. Stock up on chilies to add to salsas, and keep a jar of red pepper flakes on hand for topping pizzas, pastas, and stir-fries.

  1. Drink green tea.

If you always opt for coffee over tea, you could be missing out on a major metabolism boost. In a recent 12-week study, participants who drank 4-5 cups of green tea daily, then did a 25-minute workout, lost an average of two more pounds and more belly fat than the non-tea-drinking exercisers. What’s is its magic? The brew contains catechins, a type of antioxidant that triggers the release of fat from fat cells and helps speed the liver’s capacity for turning fat into energy.

  1. Snack smart all day.

It sounds counterintuitive. Why would you eat continually if you wanted to lose weight? Eating five to six mini meals, portioned to fit on the size of a salad plate, rather than three larger meals every day, keeps your metabolism going. “Snacking every 2 hours will also prevent you from going without food so long that you become so hungry that you overeat,” says Dr. Calapai. “Try not to let more than 4 hours elapse between meals and make sure each meal includes protein, for an extra metabolic boost,” he adds. If you eat a high-fiber breakfast of cereal and fruit first thing, for example, have a midmorning snack, such as yogurt and fruit; for lunch (try four ounces of chicken or fish on top of a leafy green salad); then another snack late afternoon, like a banana and a piece of low-fat cheese. Dinner is then a lighter meal for example four to six ounces of turkey, salmon, or another lean source of protein with steamed veggies.

  1. Get a good night’s sleep.

Lack of sleep is linked to a major increase in the risk of obesity. This may partly be caused by the negative effects of sleep deprivation on metabolism. Lack of sleep has also been linked with increased blood sugar levels and insulin resistance, which are both linked to a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes It’s also been shown to boost the hunger hormone ghrelin, and decrease the fullness hormone leptin This could explain why many people who are sleep deprived feel hungry and struggle to lose weight.

About the Doctor:

Dr. Christopher Calapai, D.O. is an Osteopathic Physician board certified in family medicine, and anti-aging medicine. Proclaimed the “The Stem Cell Guru” by the New York Daily News, Dr. Calapai is a leader in the field of stem cell therapy in the U.S. His stem cell treatments have achieved remarkable results in clinical trials on patients with conditions as varied as Alzheimer’s, arthritis, erectile dysfunction, frailty syndrome, heart, kidney and liver failure, lupus, MS and Parkinson’s. He has worked with Mike Tyson, Mickey Rourke, Steven Seagal, and Gotham’s, Donal Logue; and as a medical consultant for the New York Rangers. Connect with him via twitter @drcalapai or at www.drcal.net

 

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March 23, 2017

From the Pros: Stretch Mark Solutions…What Can Be Done Safely?

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Women of all ages regardless of height, weight, or parental status are susceptible to stretch marks. This is a simple fact. Another fact, which will hopefully make you feel a bit better, is that supermodels yes, the bikini models you see in Sports Illustrated and Victoria’s Secret, have stretch marks. If you’re like the 95% of the women out there you prefer them gone. Dr. Kirk Brandow, founder and director of the Brandow Clinic in for Cosmetic Surgery in Philadelphia who has appeared on national programs such as Good Morning America and 20/20 offering insights on cosmetic surgery, shared the real deal on stretch mark solutions with several facts on popular procedures and topical options to prevent and remove stretch marks. Here’s what he has to say.

Option #1: Topical Creams & Preventative Foods

“There are a variety of topical treatments, the ones with cocoa butter are the trend, but they won’t do much if anything to improve severe stretch marks. These creams and oils perform better when used as preventive measures because fully developed stretch marks are rarely skin-deep,” explains Dr. Brandow.

Gelatin powder has been suggested as a great way to get more collagen into your system. Coconut oil mixed with beeswax is said to prevent stretch marks especially when applied throughout the day. Eating foods rich in vitamin C can help prevent stretch marks from the inside out. Adding things like red peppers, parsley, broccoli, kale, Brussels sprouts are good bets.

Option #2: Lasers

Many women who have post pregnancy stretch marks turn to lasers to eliminate this unwanted scarring. Kim Kardashian recently announced via her Snapchat that she would undergo laser treatments to rid her stretch marks. The Coolbeam laser, which is the one Kim Kardashian is going with, requires up to 5 treatments at around $5,000 per treatment which adds up to $25,000. Lasers are known for high level of safety and efficacy and most patients come away very pleased with the result. The treated area heals rather quickly, within a week to three week

“Lasers are far less invasive than a tummy tuck, which has a much longer recovery time. Lasers do have some risk in that they can burn the skin or cause tissue damage. Therefore, it’s very important to choose a doctor who knows what they are doing,” advises Dr. Brandow.

Option #3: Platelet Rich Plasma with Micro-needling

Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) has been around for the past two decades and used to help athletes like Tiger Woods and Alex Rodriquez recover from injury. A few years ago, the “Vampire Facial” made headlines when Micro-needling was added to the procedure offering a vibrant, smooth, flawless complexion. The results were so great that cosmetic surgeons started to explore other parts of the body such as stretch marks on the buttocks, breast, arms, thighs and abdomen.

This calls for blood to be taken from the patient then put into a machine that separates the platelet rich plasma from the blood. It is then spread over the face after the micro-needling is completed. The micro-needling is a process where a pen-like tool with several tiny needles at the tip is carefully guided over the affected area making microscopic holes on both the outer and inner layers of skin. These holes are so small that they heal within a few hours. The process triggers a healing response in the dermis layer which is what causes the fast fading of stretch marks. Doctors recommend micro-needling with PRP over any other treatment because the results are significant and the cost is about $1000 per session. “Micro-needling with PRP is a combination that offers a fast, in office option, with excellent results and is less costly than lasers,” explains Dr. Brandow who was recently on TV speaking of the procedure.

Dr. Brandow adds that the advantage of micro-needling with PRP for stretch marks over lasers is a lesser chance of scarring and skin discoloration. “Skin on the body is more susceptible to hyperpigmentation than on the face making Micro-needling is a safer option for ethnicities with varying skin tones. This is a big advantage over cool beam lasers, IPL or chemical peels,” he explains.

Option #4: The Tummy Tuck

This is the gold standard offering the best results however it’s invasive and the recovery time is longer. Known as abdominoplasty, the procedure removes excess skin in the abdominal region and tightens the muscles. The stretch marks below the belly button are discarded along with the excess skin. “The tummy tuck is a surgical procedure that comes with risk so typically candidates must be non-smokers in good physical health as certain they will not want more kids after surgery. It’s is the only option for complete and permanent stretch mark removal. Recovery time can be up to 6 weeks and again it is critical that one chooses a reputable doctor. A botched tummy tuck can lead to off-centered belly buttons, long thick scars, and dangerous infections,” warns Dr. Brandow.

Ultimately stretch marks are an unfortunate reality that comes with pregnancy, puberty and any other weight or muscle gain where the skin is stretched. There are preventative measures one can take. Be very weary of anything that seems too good to be true and always consult with a credentialed doctor when considering any kind of cosmetic procedure. 

About the Doctor:

Dr. Kirk Brandow, founder and director of Brandow Clinic for Cosmetic Surgery is a plastic surgeon with 2 locations in the Philadelphia metro area and a 3rd one at the jersey shore. Named a “Top Doc” in Plastic Surgery by Philadelphia Magazine as well as nationally recognized for one of America’s “Best Plastic Surgeons” of this decade, Dr. Brandow is a trusted expert who has developed many innovative, minimally invasive procedures for the face, body and skin. He has been featured on local, national and international television programs including 20/20, CNN’s Headline News, Good Morning America.

 

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March 17, 2017

Aesthetic Nurse, Jill Caruso Shares 5 Terrific Winter to Spring Tips

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FROM THE PROS:

As we say goodbye to the Winter season and hello to Spring, there are important beauty tips and tricks to keep in mind to ensure your beauty regimen continues to thrive through the transitioning seasons. New York City based Beauty Expert Jill Caruso of Fox Vein Care, has come up with the perfect Winter to Spring beauty tips to ensure vibrant skin.

Harsh weather conditions in the Winter can bring anyone’s skin woes, so as the first bud of spring blooms there are a few things to keep in mind. Jill is a Board Certified Aesthetic Nurse Specialist and her distinctive background in medicine, design, and skin esthetics gives her a unique approach when analyzing a patient’s face and determining an individual treatment. She suggests the following for Winter to Spring flawless skin:

Do not forget your sunscreen – This is not an option, but an essential everyday necessity, regardless of weather, to protect your skin from UV radiation. Also, contrary to popular belief, SPF ratings higher than 30 do not offer more protection and no sunscreen can block more than 97 percent of UV rays.
Be sure to moisturize daily – Moisturizing your face will help you to look and feel younger, resulting in softer, more elastic skin… not to mention it will keep your skin hydrated.
Wash your face every night – This is vital, as it removes not only makeup, but the dirt and dust that accumulates throughout the day. Outside elements as well as makeup clogs your pores with dirt, dust, smoke, etc., however, Jill suggests that soap-less cleansers are okay occasionally as they can act as cleansers with nondrying agents.
Light Chemical peels can be great for the season change – There are lower UV levels during the winter, making it optimal for recovery and an ideal time to prepare your skin for the forthcoming spring season.
Lastly, when it comes to makeup, less is more – People often tend to overdo it on the winter. Heavy foundation, mascara, and lipstick often ages women.

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February 13, 2017

From the Pros: What does Organic Skincare Really Mean?

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Organic has gone mainstream! Everyone these days prefers organic products thinking they’re sparing themselves harmful chemicals. This is especially true in beauty products. While the FDA maintains that chemicals are safe and in small doses many are; these chemicals add up. The average woman uses 10 to 16 cosmetic products daily creating a chemical cocktail in our bodies. The hidden danger is that no one is testing how these chemicals react together. To err on the safe side, more women are choosing organic products. Problem is how can you tell if a product is really 100% organic, what does that really mean, and how is that relevant to your skincare routine?

Dr. Spiezia, Co-founder and formulator of Inlight Organic Skincare is considered to be the global expert in organic skin care. He’s the father of the organic beauty movement in Britain and was voted one of the top 25 “Who’s who in natural beauty” in 2012, 2013 and again in 2015.

Dr. Spiezia explains, “the word organic is a labeling term. It means that the product was produced adhering to very specific and approved methods. It also means that it met the criteria of a third party source. Simply put, for a product to be truly organic it must go through a specific creation process that leaves out certain “chemically based” ingredients. This complex process is what leads to a product you can trust to be free of chemicals.”

Where things get confusing is when we look at the FDA and the USDA. The FDA doesn’t have a formal definition or criteria of what constitutes “organic.” When a cosmetic product claims it’s organic and is labeled as such, it means that it complies with both the USDA and the FDA. However, the USDA standard is clear about organic food, not necessarily beauty products. So in the US there’s no real standard specifically for cosmetics and beauty products. The argument becomes, if it can’t be measured, does it really work and is it all hype.

So why pay extra for organic skincare? Simply put, there are 2 reasons. The good organic skincare products work better, and they are better for you. The challenge is that the smaller companies creating organic products lack the advertising dollars that the non-organic cosmetics giants have. Thanks to the internet, people are able to search on their own for organic brands. Once they find organic products that are top quality and deliver significant results they become loyal.

“When I created Inlight I knew that the terms ‘organic’ and ‘natural’ are so often interpreted in different ways,” explains Dr. Spiezia. The key is really in the accreditation. Consumers need to look for “certified organic” labeling. That ensures that it product meets standards set by a neutral third party resource,” adds Dr. Spiezia.

Inlight has a 100% accreditation from the Soil Association and also proud to be the very first UK skincare company accredited under the new European-wide standard, Cosmos, streamlining the various national standards under one umbrella. Inlight 100% organic skincare is now available in the USA, which gives consumers a product line that they can trust.

The key as with any beauty regime is to understand your skin and how it reacts to what you currently use. The fewer chemicals used, the better. An organic cleanser, moisturizer and treatment serum along with body lotion could be enough to see a fast improvement to skin texture and tone.

For more information on Dr. Spiezia visit the US Distribution Website for Inlight Skincare.

www.hugyourskin.com

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February 8, 2017

From the Pros: Plastic Surgeon With Red Flags on Plastic Surgery Procedures

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The name of the game today in cosmetic surgery is fast and non-invasive. The reasons are obvious. Nobody wants to be bedridden out of work and off the social grid as they recover. Fast results of a thinner, tighter, younger look within an hour is very alluring. How many of these seemingly miracle procedures actually do what they claim to? We turned to board certified Philadelphia plastic surgeon Dr. Kirk Brandow to breakdown cosmetic surgery hype; which procedures are zeros not heroes.

Kybella

This injection is made of deoxycholic acid, which is actually produced by the body naturally to absorb fat. The synthetic version is a fat cell destroyer injected into the pocket of fat below the chin. So far this is the only location on the body for which Kybella is FDA-approved. Dr. Brandow cautions, “Kybella may shrink fat but it’s also an acid which could burn the skin and cause an abscess or an open wound if placed too close to the skin. Equally important is that it can also destroy the deeper tissues as well which could lead to a dent just under the chin.” Another issue with Kybella according to Dr. Brandow is potential for ‘redistribution of fat’ to other areas of the neck when people gain weight, over time. “The loss of fat in this focused, Kybella, injected spot will look odd when areas around it are heavier looking.”

Instabreast

If you’ve ever considered a breast augmentation, it’s not hard to understand the appeal of “test-driving” a pair of implants for a day. This “try it before you buy it” procedure called Instabreast takes about twenty minutes in office. A saline solution is injected into the breasts until they are enlarged to the desired size. Surgeons who offer the procedure claim that it takes the guesswork out of planning an augmentation by providing patients with 24 hours of experience with larger breasts.

“This is crazy!!” says Dr. Brandow. “How do you anesthetize the breast before you shoot in the saline? Wouldn’t this hurt? Just the thought of it would scare off my patients. Additionally, implants on top of the muscle versus under the muscle look different and the size you use on top looks totally different from the one you would use under the muscle.” Dr. Brandow questions the safety of injecting saline under the muscle in office with a local anesthetic. “I would say it’s a recipe for a punctured lung! Additionally, I would love to know how a surgeon inflates a young, tight skinned, A- cup woman who wants a full C- cup, without causing a lot of pain during that injection.”

Mesotherapy and Lipodissolve as a Fat Dissolver

Several cosmetic surgeons and dermatologists agree that if there is one procedure to avoid when shopping for a slimmer look, it’s one called lipodissolve, a shot that claims to dissolve away stubborn fat deposits. This shot is often part of “mesotherapy;” a shallow injection of a cocktail of substances using a fine needle. “There is really not a single scientific study to show that it definitely works,” says Dr. Brandow. Are these chemicals safe when injected into fat? What happens to this fat? Where does it go? Dr. Brandow feels lipodissolve is an ill-advised treatment. “This is a non-FDA approved use of a material called lipostabil, which can dissolve fat and other structures however, it can cause pain, swelling, hard lumps, ulceration of the skin, and contour irregularities. None of the pharmaceuticals used for injection are FDA approved.”

Laser Liposuction

It seems like everything that has the word “laser” in it today is perceived as a state-of-the-art breakthrough, but in this case, using laser to assist in liposuction is not necessarily so. Laser liposuction uses lasers to liquefy the fat before it is removed, making it easier to vacuum out and they may also stimulate the production of collagen and elastin, which results in firmer, tighter, and smoother skin. Lasers may also coagulate small blood vessels in the area, which translates to less bruising. What’s the downside? Dr. Brandow points out that, “There is greater risk of burning and therefore, pain. Laser liposuction, Smartlipo and similar procedures add both time and money to the typical technique.”

About Dr. Kirk Brandow

Dr. Kirk Brandow is a board certified plastic surgeon with practices in the Philadelphia metro area. Named a “Top Doc” in Plastic Surgery by Philadelphia Magazine as well as nationally recognized for one of America’s “Best Plastic Surgeons” of this decade, Dr. Brandow is a trusted expert who has developed many innovative, minimally invasive procedures for the face, body and skin. These procedures include the Boomer Lift™, the 48 Hour Facelift™, the Scarless Breast Implant, the Multilayered Micro-Lipo Augmentation, the Tumescent Technique for Liposuction and the CO2 Laser Blepharoplasty.

He has been featured on local, national and international television programs including 20/20, CNN’s Headline News, Good Morning America, ABC Action News, TV Globo and Telemundo to provide updates and opinions on the latest trends in cosmetic surgery. Dr. Brandow where he has spoken out on the controversial issues of cosmetic surgery, advising viewers to take a more responsible and more realistic approach to the latest fads and gimmicks in Cosmetic Surgery.

Dr. Brandow served as an Associate Editor of the International Journal of Aesthetic and Restorative Surgery as well as a preceptor for many live surgical training conferences where he helped teach other doctors advanced techniques in Cosmetic Surgery.

Connect with Dr. Brandow via www.brandowclinic.com

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February 7, 2017

From the pros: 9 Things Your Dentist Wants You to Know

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Dr. Caitlin Grimes

Most of us don’t exactly get fired up about a visit to the dentist. Often, we let those bi-annual appointments slide and wait to visit the dentist until we have a more serious problem. What many people don’t realize, however, is that regular dental visits and maintaining oral hygiene are closely tied overall health. You wouldn’t skip a visit to the cardiologist if your heart was bothering you, right? Well, the same goes for your dentist.
Dr. Caitlin Grimes at StoneCreek Dental Care has compiled a list of nine important things your dentist wants you to know so that you can achieve optimal oral and overall health:
1. Your mouth is full of bacteria — you MUST brush your teeth. It’s not something we like to think about, but our mouths are full of bacteria – some of which can be harmful to our teeth and overall health. Harmful bacteria erode teeth and contribute to periodontal (gum) disease, which is why brushing your teeth at least twice daily for two minutes is absolutely essential. Remember – brushing is vital, but if you overdo it you may damage your gums. Brush gently at a 45-degree angle to effectively remove the bacteria that causes plaque buildup and decay.

2. Flossing isn’t optional either. If you’re not flossing regularly, you really should be (and your dentist can tell if you aren’t). Flossing removes food debris and bacteria that gets stuck between teeth. Be sure to check with your dentist to make sure you’re flossing correctly!

3. Your dentist can detect issues early. This might seem overly obvious, but the best way to prevent dental pain is to visit your dentist. Many dental issues are not painful initially, so when you visit your dentist he or she can detect any minor issues before they turn into major ones. Your dentist can fill a small cavity, for example, before it has the chance to get infected and cause a painful tooth abscess.

4. Poor oral health contributes to poor overall health. Did you know that if you have gum disease you are much more likely to have a heart attack or stroke? This risk increases when those harmful bacteria travel through the bloodstream to the rest of the body and increase inflammation. Oral health can greatly impact your overall health, and vice versa.

5. Smoking will ruin your teeth. Aside from yellowing your teeth, smoking contributes to bad breath, receding gums and a dry mouth. A dry mouth is much more prone to harboring bad bacteria, leading to plaque buildup and tooth decay. Smoking also decreases your body’s ability to fight off infection in the mouth, and contributes to the development of oral cancer. The bottom line – kick that habit ASAP!

6. Change your toothbrush every three months. Over time, your toothbrush loses its effectiveness. The bristles become frayed and do not work as well as they once did, and the bad bacteria that lives in your mouth builds up on your toothbrush. If you have gum disease, you need to change your toothbrush more often — every four to six weeks. If you’ve been sick, it’s especially important to change your toothbrush afterwards to get rid of any germs.

7. Bleeding gums are usually not “normal.” Bleeding gums can be the result of several factors. You might be using a toothbrush with hard bristles and brushing too vigorously. Bleeding gums may also signal an improper flossing technique. At worst, bleeding gums are a sign of gum disease. Regardless of the cause, if your gums are bleeding be sure to ask your dentist about it!

8. There’s more to that regular dental visit than cleaning. Your dentist isn’t just there to clean your teeth and give you a brighter smile. During your regular dental visit, he or she will also check your mouth for signs of tooth decay, gum disease and oral cancer. These issues are much easier to treat if found early.

9. Your dentist is here to help you, not judge you. Some people do not visit the dentist because they are embarrassed about their teeth or an issue with their mouth. Don’t worry — your dentist has been highly trained in treating a variety of issues, and will be able to talk through any concerns you may have and discuss the appropriate treatment options.

With these nine things in mind, be sure to make and keep your regular dental appointments so you can take control of your dental and overall health. Every patient is different, so your dentist will work with you to address your individual needs and ensure you have the healthiest smile possible!

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December 29, 2016

From the Pros: How to Get Mentally Fit for The New Year

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With the start of a new year it is important to reflect back on the prior year, assess what went well, what didn’t and decide where you want to go next. It takes a lot of mental toughness, self-love, and discipline to create the life you want. Simply coasting along on cruise control reacting to life can lead to victim mentality and stagnation. Dr. Sanam Hafeez PsyD, a NYC based licensed clinical psychologist, teaching faculty member at the prestigious Columbia University Teacher’s College and the founder and Clinical Director of Comprehensive Consultation Psychological Services shares some key ways to get mentally fit for the new year so you can move forward successfully. www.comprehendthemind.com

  1. Clear clutter.

Look at your surroundings. If you have junk drawers galore, a messy car, countertops and cabinets that are full of stuff you don’t even use, it is time to clear the clutter. According to Dr. Hafeez, “cluttered spaces reflect a cluttered mind. If you want to wipe the slate clean to allow room for new people and circumstances that serve you, you must get your mind clear. Many of my patients who describe themselves as anxious, stressed or even depressed say they feel better when they start clearing up their physical space.”

  1. Exercise a little bit. 

Dr. Hafeez who also helps people overcome body image issues encourages aiming for smaller attainable wins. “People set high fitness goals for the new year and then fall off after a month or less. This leaves their self esteem shot which is when self loathing and depression can sneak in.” She advises setting a reachable daily goal of perhaps walking 10,000 steps per day. There are step-counting apps available to measure how much you walk and they add up quickly. “When you see accomplishment on a daily basis you stick with it, this sets your mind in a positive direction,” says Dr. Hafeez.

  1. Eat mind-boosting foods.

Mental fitness also has to do with how well our minds work. A loss of memory or the ability to concentrate or focus can easily shift with an improved diet. “Research finds that along with other benefits, foods rich in Omega-3, such as some fish and nuts, as well as those full of antioxidants can help protect the brain from memory decline.” So eating more fish such as salmon and add fruits such as blackberries and blueberries to your diet can help. The good news is that brain boosting foods include delicious options such as chocolate, guacamole (avacados) and sunflower seeds.

  1. Color! The adult coloring book bandwagon is a good one to jump on. According to Dr. Hafeez coloring requires total focus on the present. The repetitive motion of coloring provides relief from stress and anxiety by entering a meditative state. “Not everyone can sit still and breathe for 15 minutes per day, but they certainly can color. It’s absolutely a fun way to achieve mindfulness and shake off the day,” explains Dr. Hafeez.
  1. Apologize and forgive.

A fast way to mental fitness is forgiveness! “Carrying around resentments and guilt wears us down and can lead to serious illness such as cancer or stroke. If you experienced a tough break up, divorce or perhaps the 2016 political climate led to arguments and lost friends, reach out apologize and seek forgiveness and move on. Remember, forgiveness doesn’t mean you condone a hurtful behavior. Forgiveness frees you and the other person making it easier to move forward.

  1. Learn something new. 

Challenge your brain by learning a new language, how to cook, paint, do Tai Chi. Pick something you think would be interesting or useful to learn and learn it. If you avoided cooking your whole life, learning the basics will serve your brain very well. According to Dr. Hafeez, “the more we can activate the cognitive functions of our brains the better our short and long-term memory and hand eye coordination will be.”

Dr. Sanam Hafeez PsyD is a NYC based licensed clinical psychologist, teaching faculty member at the prestigious Columbia University Teacher’s College and the founder and Clinical Director of Comprehensive Consultation Psychological Services, P.C. a neuropsychological, developmental and educational center in Manhattan and Queens. 

Dr. Hafeez masterfully applies her years of experience connecting psychological implications to address some of today’s common issues such as body image, social media addiction, relationships, workplace stress, parenting and psychopathology (bipolar, schizophrenia, depression, anxiety, etc…). In addition, Dr. Hafeez works with individuals who suffer from post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), learning disabilities, attention and memory problems, and abuse. Dr. Hafeez often shares her credible expertise to various news outlets in New York City and frequently appears on CNN and Dr.Oz.

Connect with her via twitter @comprehendMind orwww.comprehendthemind.com

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December 27, 2016

VERY, VERY SUPRISING USES FOR BOTOX THAT HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH FOREHEAD WRINKLES

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When most people think of Botox the first thing that usually comes to mind is wrinkle reduction. Indeed, Botox is the world’s most popular treatment for eradicating wrinkles and fine lines.  The toxin is specifically FDA approved for treating frown lines between the eyebrows (glabellar lines) and lines around the eyes (crow’s feet). In addition to being the gold standard for wrinkle reduction, Botox can also be used to treat a variety of issues, both cosmetic and non-cosmetic. Dr. John Zannis is a New Bern, North Carolina board certified plastic surgeon. He provides a list of conditions that Botox has been used to treat.

Acne

Botox can curb oil production, reducing breakouts. “To totally treat acne, you’d need to use doses of Botox so large they’d prevent you from constricting your facial muscles,” says Dr. Zannis. “But tiny amounts of Botox injected very superficially help reduce oil production, and you can still have facial expressions.” Though he’d recommend it for almost any patient struggling with acne, Zannis would likely advise trying another dermatologist-prescribed treatment, like spironolactone or birth control pills, first. And though it can technically be used to quell oil production anywhere on the face, he cautions against using it all over because of potential effects on muscular activity (a.k.a. frozen face). The most effective and common area for using Botox to curb oil production, he says, is the forehead.

Gummy smile (not FDA approved)

A “gummy” smile, one that’s characterized by a smile that shows too much of the gums, usually results from “excessive lip elevation” when the upper lip rises too far above the upper teeth when smiling. Injecting Botox into the upper lip weakens the upper lip’s retractor muscles so that it won’t raise as high and your smile will seem better-balanced. It can be done in about five minutes. Usually lasts for four to six months. Costs range from $200-$300.  Dr. Zannis says, “This technique is not for the novice Botox injector. Too much, and your lip won’t raise enough, too little and you will need more, or if injected asymmetrically, you might have a funny asymmetrical smile.”

Urinary incontinence.

Overactive bladder problems affect up to 20% of women over 40. For severe cases where medications do not provide complete relief, Botox injections into the bladder wall may provide relief lasting about 6 months.

Psoriasis
Psoriasis is uncomfortable, itchy, and not exactly easy on the eyes. Luckily, this flaky skin condition could be a thing of the past thanks to Botox. Though psoriasis is technically incurable, Botox minimizes the activity of inflammatory cells that bring on outbreaks.

Excessive Sweating

For those who suffer from excessive sweating, however, summer isn’t always the sunniest time of the year. Thankfully, Botox could be a saving grace for those attempting to manage this condition, which is officially known as axillary hyperhidrosis. Studies show that just a handful of injections can reduce underarm sweat for up to TWO years. Um, where do we sign up?

Breast Lift
Are your breasts in need of a pick-me-up? Instead of going under the knife and getting permanent augmentation, some experts have suggested a quick and easy Botox lift.  Dr. Zannis says that, “Those looking for a modest improvement are said to be able to temporarily plump their assets thanks to injections into the pectoralis minor chest muscle.”

Depression

The benefits of Botox® may be more than skin deep; two recent studies suggest that it may help alleviate the symptoms of depression. In a study published in the May 2014 issue of the Journal of Psychiatric Research, more than half of participants who had moderate-to-severe depression showed a substantial improvement in depressive symptoms following one injection of Botox® between the brows. This improvement lasts longer than the cosmetic effects, suggesting that the effect may be more than just feeling better about your appearance. Botox® is not approved to treat depression.

Teeth Grinding

Injections of Botox® were used to control involuntary muscle tension and spasms long before it became the go-to wrinkle buster. Dr. Zannis says that, “these neurotoxin injections may weaken the chewing muscles enough to reduce bruxism (teeth grinding) without affecting your ability to chew, talk and smile. Results last about four months. Botox® is not yet approved to treat bruxism.”

Migraine Headache

Botox® is approved by the FDA to treat chronic migraine headaches in adults who have 15 or more headache-days a month, each lasting four hours or more. Studies that led to this indication show that BOTOX®® prevents up to nine headache-days a month (vs seven for dummy injections). Other research hints that the neurotoxin may also help with low cerebrospinal fluid headaches and cluster or “suicide” headaches.

 Brow Boost

Much like lines form over time, your brow may also drop or droop. Botox cosmetic treatments can also be used to improve the appearance of the brow. Dr. Zannis explains that, “the treatment essentially freezes the sagging muscles in place and gives the brow more stability. Lifting the brows in this way leaves you with a less tired and younger, fresher appearance.”

Jaw Reduction (off label use)

Botox can be used to perform jaw reduction (commonly called jaw line softening). Injecting Botox into the masseter muscle (the primary muscle used in chewing actions) reduces its overall size; transforming an overly square and masculine appearing jawline into a more feminine oval or heart shape. 

Dr. John Zannis is a New Bern, North Carolina board-certified plastic surgeon and best selling author. A graduate of Stanford University and The University of Cincinnati Medical College, he received his formal training in General Surgery and Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina under the guidance of world-renowned plastic surgeon Dr. Louis Argenta. During this time, he performed over 5,000 surgical procedures and covered all aspects of plastic surgery including cosmetic surgery of the face and body, complex reconstructive procedures of face and body, cleft lip and palate surgery, hand surgery, facial and jaw fracture repair, and reconstruction following massive weight loss. He blends his interests and studies of classical art and symmetry to his surgery practices. Connect with him via twitter @JohnZannisMD or his website www.zannisplasticsurgery.com  

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