5 min read

Dermal Filler 101

12 Nov


Fillers seem scary right?  Reality TV is peppered with “trout pouts” and overdone “plastic” looking faces.   If these were a true representation of what fillers can do we all have the right to be scared.   The misconception that this is the only look you can achieve has given fillers a bad name, one they don’t necessarily deserve.    Sure, like every treatment there are risks but when dermal filler is administered to the right area, in the right amount and by the right injector they can achieve a natural refreshed look.  They can help you look the best you can for your age. Like you’ve just been on a lovely holiday. 


To dispel some of that scariness, here is our “Dermal Filler 101”.  


What is Dermal Filler made of?


Non permanent dermal fillers are made of a soft injectable gel (hyaluronic acid).   The gel is tissue-friendly and closely resembles the hyaluronic acid that exists naturally in the body.   Non-permanent filler is biodegradable and is gradually absorbed by the body over time, with a proven and FDA-endorsed safety record.


How does Dermal Filler work?


By boosting the skin’s supply of hyaluronic acid they revitalise, add volume that has been lost due to ageing and instantly diminish the appearance of lines and wrinkles. The result is a softer and natural look.   There are different product thicknesses for different areas of your facial anatomy to achieve the best results.


Unlike anti-wrinkle injections which can take up to 2 weeks to take effect, dermal filler results are immediate.   Dermal fillers last between 12-18 months.


What are the Benefits?


Have you noticed as you get older that your lips thin and smokers lines appear (especially the upper lip), the apple of your cheeks drop, your lower eye bags become more prominent and your nasolabial folds become deeper?   Dermal Filler gives a natural looking result that does not affect facial expression. These injections provide an easy way to reduce wrinkles, smooth the skin, replace lost volume and give a more youthful appearance to the lips, cheeks, under eye hollows and jowls.   For women, the most popular areas are the cheeks and the under eye area.  For men the under eye area is the most popular.


How can you avoid looking overdone and the “trout pout”?


In the case of dermal filler, a little goes a long way. 1ml of filler is usually enough to refresh the lip area which is not a lot.    A trout pout is basically an overfilled lip and it doesn’t happen in one treatment.   Trout pout usually occurs after multiple treatments with different practitioners over time.    This doesn’t have to be the case.   An experienced facial anatomy injector knows how much filler is right for you personally to achieve a balanced refreshed look.   They know how to follow the natural curve of your existing lip.


Is filler safe?


Safety can be qualified by three things:   

  1. The product - As discussed above non-permanent dermal filler is biodegradable and gradually absorbed by the body over time with a proven and FDA-endorsed safety record.  It is best to avoid permanent fillers. 
  2. The injector – only Medical Doctors and qualified nurses who are supervised by Doctors are able to inject and obviously you want someone who has lots of experience injecting.
  3. The area of injection – This a combo one. Qualified Doctors and Nurses are trained to inject the right product to the right area of your anatomy to achieve the desired result.   You should feel free to ask your injector their level of experience and any complications with filler they have personally had. 


What are the potential risks?


As with any injection some side effects may occur and these are best discussed with your injector.   These may include redness, local swelling, bruising and local pain.   These shouldn’t last more than a few hours up to a few days.   The good news is,   Dr Somia is very experienced in facial anatomy and injectables and he loves to inject.   Rather than using a basic needle and syringe, he uses a computerised Advanced Injecting System, which allows for ‘Swiss Precision’.


If you are still a little nervous, Dr Somia will be more than happy to discuss this with you in person.   


What are the costs?


At our clinic, the cost of 1ml of dermal filler is $770.   All injectables are performed by Dr Somia.


How can I prepare?


One week before treatment stop any fish or krill oil (these encourage bruising) and start Arnicka or Bromelian tablets (from your local chemist) to help minimise the bruising.

For the first 24 hours – no very hot or cold drinks whilst you are numb and avoid touching the lips or kissing.

For the first 2-3 days – Avoid touching the injected area except with clean hands and flat fingers without pressure.  Don’t apply makeup (except mineral), don’t swim or partake in vigorous exercise, don’t go to a sauna, don’t expose yourself to the sun for long periods or to extreme hot or cold temperatures

For the first month:    Avoid peels, laser and tattoos to the treated area.


How can I book?


You can schedule a time to see Dr Somia for injectables at either our Bondi Junction or Bella Vista office by calling our office on 02 9387 2110 or email at info@naveensomia.com.au.


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Please note:  All procedures carry risk and results vary for each patient.   The above information does not replace a consultation with a plastic surgeon.   



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Dr Naveen Somia MBBS, PhD, FRACS

Written by Dr Naveen Somia MBBS, PhD, FRACS

Dr. Naveen Somia is a Sydney Plastic Surgeon who listens to his patients, understands their problems and works alongside them to help achieve their aesthetic goals by applying his skills and years of experience in Plastic and Cosmetic Surgery. A published author on Plastic and Cosmetic Surgery, Naveen’s blog is aimed at helping you make the right choices and stay safe in your quest to look your personal best.