It might surprise you to learn that nobody has a perfectly symmetrical face. While it is not always evident or obvious, most faces have at least some degree of asymmetry. This asymmetry may be present from birth, or a part of natural aging, but it can also be caused or exacerbated by injury, illness, trauma, or previous surgery.
In some cases, facial asymmetry is a purely aesthetic concern. For more advanced cases of asymmetry, there may be some functional impairments. For example, if the lower jaw is out of balance with the rest of the face, it can lead to pain or difficulty while chewing or swallowing.
What are the Common Types of Face Asymmetry?
You may experience facial asymmetry in a number of ways. The most common type of face asymmetry is an unevenness of the lower jaw, while other common issues include:
- Cheek retrusion
- Eye displacement
- Eyebrow unevenness
- Protrusion of the forehead or brow bone
- Nasal deviations
Am I a Good Candidate for Reconstructive Surgery?
If you have face asymmetry that causes a significant cosmetic issue or impedes normal functionality, you may wish to speak with a reconstructive surgeon about potential treatment options. There are a number of reconstructive surgery procedures that can be used to treat asymmetry and help you determine the type of procedure that is right for you. During your consultation, you and your surgeon will discuss your goals and walk through some potential treatment options.
Generally speaking, you are a good candidate for facial asymmetry surgery if:
- You are in good health overall.
- You have realistic expectations.
- You experience functional impairment due to your facial asymmetry or are deeply unhappy with your facial appearance.
- You have talked with your surgeon and understand all the potential risks.
What are the Options for Facial Asymmetry Surgery?
Because there are so many types of facial asymmetry, the list of surgical solutions is extensive. Here are just a few examples of common treatments for facial asymmetry.
Achieving Facial Symmetry with Lifts
Sometimes, facial symmetry is achieved with a lift, which involves the surgeon making small incisions, removing excess fat and skin, and pulling your muscle and skin tissue tight. Examples of lifts include a brow lift, eye lift, or full facelift.
Chin and Cheek Augmentation
Some patients experience asymmetry as a result of a chin or cheeks that are out of proportion with the rest of the face. Both the chin and cheeks can be augmented either via implants or by restructuring the existing skin and tissue. In some cases, these methods may be used in tandem.
Reconstructive Jaw Surgery
For patients whose jaws are imbalanced with the rest of the face, reconstructive surgery may be necessary. Depending on the patient’s need, this may mean removing part of the jawbone, manipulating the jawbone, or adding to the jawbone. Note that reconstructive jaw surgery will usually require orthodontic treatment, as well, to ensure that teeth are properly aligned.
For some patients, the cause of asymmetry is a nose that is oddly shaped or simply out of proportion with the surrounding facial features. These issues can be addressed via rhinoplasty, which involves reshaping the anatomy of the nose to achieve greater facial harmony. Rhinoplasty procedures can address issues of the nose shape as well as size.
Are There Non-Surgical Treatments for Face Asymmetry?
If you have minor face asymmetry, it may be possible to provide cosmetic improvement via the injection of soft tissue fillers. While fillers can offer notable results without requiring anesthesia, incisions, or a prolonged recovery time, it should be noted that the effects of fillers are strictly temporary. For more lasting improvement, reconstructive surgery is usually recommended.
Learn More About Reconstructive Surgery for Face Asymmetry
Face asymmetry can lead to a host of complications, not only with your self-image but even with everyday functionality. The good news is that reconstructive surgeons can typically address the problem and provide a lasting solution.
If you wish to speak with a reconstructive surgeon, we invite you to schedule a consultation appointment with Thrive Reconstructive Surgery.