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What Should I Avoid Before and After Kybella?

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Dr. Hardik Soni

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A double chin is an extra layer of fat that develops underneath the chin. This bit of excess fat (called submental fat) can get in the way of your confidence whenever it makes an appearance in photos or when you smile. Fortunately, there are cosmetic treatments that can reduce a fatty chin area. One of these treatments is Kybella, a nonsurgical injection technique that has proven to be safe and effective for thousands of patients. 

So what should you avoid before and after undergoing Kybella? Anti-inflammatory substances, essential fatty acids, glycolics, retinoids, caffeine, alcohol, and certain foods should be avoided before and after the treatment because they cause increased bruising and swelling. Additional cosmetic procedures should also be avoided for better overall results and fast recovery. 

What to Avoid During Kybella Pre-Treatment

Blood thinners, essential fatty acids, skin irritants and other substances should be avoided at least a few days before your procedure. These substances may cause excessive bruising, swelling, bleeding problems and other side effects after the treatment session. 

You will need to consult with a trusted cosmetic surgeon as part of your Kybella pre-treatment. Although it’s a nonsurgical procedure that requires little preparation, you should expect some side effects for 3-7 days after. If you’re planning to debut your new look at a major event, schedule your appointment at least two weeks before to give your body time to heal.

It’s also important to let your surgeon know if any other cosmetic treatments have been done on and around the target injection site, which includes the face, neck, jaw, and chin. Kybella injections are a synthetic form of deoxycholic acid, which target and kill the chin or submental fat. However, deoxycholic acid can also kill other cells and may have an adverse reaction with other drugs and chemicals. Before your treatment, you should temporarily discontinue the use of: 

  • Essential fatty acids: Ginkgo biloba, garlic, flax oil, cod liver oil, vitamin A, vitamin E, St. John’s Wort, and other supplements should not be ingested three days before Kybella to minimize bruising and bleeding. 
  • Anti-inflammatory drug: Optional blood-thinning drugs like Aspirin, Motrin, Advil and other NSAIDS should be avoided a week prior to your treatment. These cause excessive bruising and bleeding. 
  • Skin irritants: To decrease redness and irritation, glycolics and retinoids should be discontinued 2-3 days prior to the treatment. 
  • Other substances: It’s best to avoid alcohol, caffeine, high-sodium and high-sugar foods, spicy foods, refined carbohydrates, and cigarettes two days before your treatment. These can increase the risk of bruising and swelling after Kybella.

What to Avoid During Kybella Post-Treatment

You can expect your cosmetic surgeon to warn you against taking the same anti-inflammatory medication, blood thinning substances, and skin irritants from before your treatment, since these will aggravate side effects such as bruising and bleeding. 

Vitamin E supplements, alcoholic beverages and salty foods are particularly notorious for increasing facial swelling, so avoid them for at least 48 hours post-treatment. In addition to this, you will also be advised against vigorous exercise and other cosmetic treatments after the procedure. 

  • Strenuous exercise, sun and heat exposure should be avoided for at least a week post-treatment. Exercise causes an increase in blood flow, which will increase swelling and slow down the healing process.
  • Cosmetic treatments such as injectables, ultrasound, laser, peels, facials and microdermabrasion in the treatment area would also need to be postponed until you are completely healed. These treatments might interfere with the deoxycholic acid injected into the chin area and cause additional complications for you.

If you’re interested to learn if there are any concurrent procedures you can undertake, consult with your surgeon since they will need to prepare a treatment plan for you. According to studies conducted by Allergan, at least six treatments are necessary in 59% of cases. Other clinical studies found that visible results can be achieved after two to four sessions, so the number of sessions you need may vary.

Recovery Tips for Kybella 

Although you can go home immediately after your Kybella injection, you will need a recovery period for the swelling and other side effects. Swelling is a normal side effect, and it occurs because the fat cells are being eliminated. Other side effects you may experience include: 

  • Numbness
  • Redness
  • Bleeding
  • Areas of hardness
  • Bruising
  • Burning or irritated sensation
  • Itchiness 
  • Facial muscle weakness 

Inflammation peaks two to three days after the treatment and completely subsides after two weeks. In the meantime, you can help your body heal faster with these recovery tips: 

1) Avoid touching, pressing, rubbing, massaging, or manipulating the chin area. This can cause more swelling in some patients. If you want a quick recovery, avoid exerting pressure on the treatment area.

2) Ice packs should be used on the treatment area for 24 – 48 hours. You can place an ice pack on the treated area for 20 minutes, then remove it for another 20 minutes. Continue this pattern for the next two days. You can also apply ice whenever you feel discomfort. 

3) Apply over-the-counter, topical Arnica gel to help decrease bruising, swelling, and discomfort. The active ingredients in Arnica reduces swelling and pain, which is why it is frequently recommended after surgery. 

4) Aside from Arnica, bromelain supplements may also be prescribed to fight the pain and inflammation. Bromelain is also found in pineapple juice, so you can drink plenty of that as well. 

5) For the next 3-5 days after your treatment, sleep with your head elevated on an extra pillow. Your doctor may also recommend wearing a head wrap or light compression dressing for additional comfort when you sleep. 

Say Goodbye to Your Double Chin at Ethos Spa 

Unsure of where to have a Kybella treatment done? Visit us at Ethos Spa – the leading cosmetic service provider in New Jersey to try this unique procedure. 

As the first and only FDA-approved treatment of its kind, Kybella will make your face look slimmer and younger. Our team of Kybella-trained healthcare specialists guarantee amazing results with this injection. Schedule an appointment with us today

Dr. Hardik Soni

MD, Founder/Lead Physician

About Dr. Hardik Soni

Dr. Hardik Soni is the founder and Medical Director of Ethos Aesthetics + Wellness. His primary focus is on minimally invasive and non-invasive cosmetic procedures including botulinum injection (Botox and Dysport), dermal fillers (Juvederm, Restylane, Radiesse), laser hair removal, chemical peels, and laser skin rejuvenation. Dr. Soni believes in a more conservative approach and his first goal is education. Clients are able to determine the ideal treatments after discussion with Dr. Soni regarding the expected outcomes, cost, as well as risks.

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