Receiving injectable dermal fillers for the first time can be a bit unsettling – especially if you are not sure what to expect. You can make your first experience receiving fillers a positive one if you arrive prepared with a general understanding of what will transpire during your appointment. Below are the top 10 things that you should remember as you prepare for your first dermal filler appointment.

1) Make sure that a certified professional will inject your fillers. Check your provider’s training and credentials before receiving your injection. Many practitioners post their credentials online while others hang copies on the walls of procedure rooms. If you are unable to locate your provider’s proof of training or certification, do not hesitate to ask your aesthetician, nurse, or doctor to see a copy of their credentials.

2) Brush up on some key terms. Before you receive your first round of fillers, you should familiarize yourself with some key terms related to injectable dermal fillers. Here are a few common terms to know:

  • Nasolabial folds: The deeper lines that form along the sides of the nose and mouth

  • Marionette lines: The lines that form on either side of your lips

  • Non-animal stabilized hyaluronic acid (NASHA) gel: The primary active ingredient in popular dermal fillers

3) There are multiple types of dermal fillers. Injectable dermal fillers are not all created equal. They have different active ingredients and are manufactured to treat different areas of the face. For instance, some fillers such as Restylane® and Sculptra® are designed to smooth the facial skin while others like Restylane Silk are designed to treat your lips.

4) Be prepared for some mild discomfort. You provider may numb the injection site with ice in advance to reduce your discomfort. However, you should expect to feel some mild pain when your fillers are injected. The good news is that this pain is typically very fleeting.

5) Understand that effects are temporary. The positive effects of fillers will depend upon the brand of injectable you use. In most cases, results will last between for a few months up to two years, with Restylane® and Sculptra® generally yielding longer lasting results.

6) Know the risks. While injectable dermal fillers rarely cause adverse effects, you should be aware of treatment risks prior to proceeding with your injections. Risks to consider include the following:

  • Bruising or swelling surrounding the injection site

  • Bleeding after receiving injections

  • Infection around the injection site

  • The formation of small bumps or lumps under the skin

7) Temper your expectations. Dermal fillers can significantly enhance your appearance. They minimize the appearance of scars and wrinkles and can make thin lips appear full. However, they do not produce the same results as face lifts or brow lifts. Make sure that you arrive at your appointment with realistic expectations regarding expected procedural outcomes.

8) Do not overdo it. Overuse of fillers can create an unnatural appearance or lumpy looking skin. Your provider will offer valuable guidance regarding frequency of treatment and the amount of filler recommended. For ideal results, be sure to follow your provider’s recommendations.

9) Follow post-treatment instructions carefully. Depending upon the brand of injectable administered, your aesthetician may recommend one or two more treatment sessions. Additionally, some providers recommend the following after receiving your fillers:

  • Refrain from overexerting yourself in the 24 hours following treatment

  • Avoid overexposure to heat or sunlight for 3 days

  • Do not consume excessive salt or alcohol in the day or two after treatment

10) Enjoy your results! Injectable dermal fillers can produce impressive results, especially in patients who are just beginning to show signs of aging. By being prepared for your first appointment and heeding your provider’s recommendations, you can enjoy a smoother, more youthful looking face.