Chin implants are an outpatient procedure using either general or local anesthesia. The chin implant itself is a small, solid item created with a biocompatible material like silicone. It is customized for each patient and can vary in size and color. During the procedure, a very small incision is made below the chin and inside of the mouth. This allows for the placement of the chin implant around the bone. Most chin augmentation procedures take less than one hour, but this time would be extended for those combining a chin implant with other procedures. Sutures are used to close the incision and the chin is bandaged for recovery.
A chin implant looks and feels just like your natural chin bone. Even when someone touches a healed chin implant, they will not be able to tell that it isn’t a “real” chin bone. The downtime related to a chin implant is relatively low, with most patients returning to the majority of their daily tasks after one week of recovery. Discomfort during the initial healing process is minimal and can be relieved with over the counter medications and cold compresses.
Patients must sleep with their head elevated and facing up, for up to two weeks after chin augmentation surgery. This position helps to protect incisions and reduce swelling. A liquid-only diet may be recommended for up to two days after the procedure depending on the patient. Strenuous activity, such as exercise, is usually resumed 3 – 4 weeks after the chin augmentation. Your surgeon will provide you with a personalized recovery plan based on your health, whether or not chin augmentation will be combined with other treatments, and your lifestyle. Full results appear 1 – 3 months after the procedure, when all swelling has subsided.
Although a chin implant is not as invasive as other facial plastic procedures, it is still important for patients to have someone they trust to take them to and from appointments. It can be beneficial to have someone stay with the patient for a day or two after their chin augmentation procedure. However, most patients quickly resume most of their normal activities.