Need A Lift?

Look fabulous with nonsurgical facial treatments.

Michelle Hammer

Michelle got a facelift without actually getting a facelift.

To say that Michelle Hammer lives a hectic life is a bit of an understatement. After all, this 57-year-old Vero Beach resident owns and operates two businesses and tries to keep up with five grandchildren, two of which she’s helping raise.

“The grandchildren are under the ages of 11 and 3 and they live with me and my husband and their mother, so we have a very busy, very active household,” Michelle explains. “And then there’s the two businesses.

“One is a commercial office furniture company called Smart Buy Business Furniture and the other is a furniture restoration company called Rachel’s Rustics. We take in furniture that no one loves anymore and refurbish it to give it a rustic farmhouse look. We’ve developed a nice little following.”

Michelle learned the art of furniture restoration from her mother and father, who filled their home with pieces they had salvaged with makeovers. Recently, Michelle decided she needed a bit of a makeover herself.

“I have Bell’s Palsy and Lyme disease, and I’ve been seeing a doctor for that and hormone imbalances for about 10 years now,’’ Michelle informs. “When I learned that this doctor was offering a new aesthetic treatment, I decided to give that a try, too.

“I’ve had BOTOX® treatments done a few times prior to going to weddings, but this other procedure is one that some friends of mine got great results from, so I went to the doctor and told her, I’d like to do this.

The doctor Michelle has been seeing is Melissa Dean, MD, of the Dean Wellness Institute in Vero Beach. Dr. Dean practices traditional medicine while offering a holistic approach to wellness. She’s also an expert in treating menopause and andropause.

Her specialties include hormone balancing, adrenal support therapy and bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT), which is considered the most natural and effective solution for hormone-related issues.

Her clinic also specializes in intravenous therapies, including IV vitamin therapy, anti-aging/regenerative medicine and aesthetic treatments such as neuromodulators, hyaluronic acid-based fillers and microneedling with platelet rich plasma (PRP).

Two for One

“I’ve been treating Michelle for about 10 years now, and she was already receiving bioidentical hormone replacement treatments, so physically she’s feeling good,” Dr. Dean reports. “But she came in last December saying she wanted to work on her appearance and do something that would give her a more youthful look. More specifically, she wanted something that would reduce some of the wrinkles and sagging in the face that comes naturally with aging. She didn’t want a complete face-lift, though, so I suggested a PDO thread lift and ThermiSmooth® treatment.”

A PDO, or polydioxanone, thread lift is a nonsurgical skin-lifting and rejuvenation procedure that is especially effective in treating the neck and jawline, where the results are immediately noticeable.

The treatment uses absorbable, protein-enriched, medical-grade threads. When inserted beneath the skin, these threads naturally lift the skin while also promoting collagen production and skin renewal at the cellular level.

There are three types of PDO threads — lifting, volumizing and smoothing threads — and they come in many sizes and forms. When inserted beneath the skin, they work like sutures to lift the skin, reduce fine lines and wrinkles, and improve skin texture and elasticity.

“We start by numbing a couple of insertion points,” Dr. Dean educates. “We then insert the threads, and as you insert the thread, you actually pull on it to lift it up. That pulls the tissue up with it, which is how you get that dramatic and immediate effect.”

A PDO thread lift can be completed in about 45 minutes, but the results can last for up to two years. And it requires no downtime for recovery. Patients can return to work or resume normal daily activities immediately after the procedure.

ThermiSmooth is a non-invasive treatment that also tightens aging skin and triggers the production of new collagen, the skin’s foundational protein. It does this through the use of targeted heat applied to specific areas of the face.

Most effective in treating “crow’s feet” and other areas around the eyes and cheeks, ThermiSmooth treatments can be completed in as little as 30 minutes, depending on the area being treated. The results last for about a year.

“We’ve found that many patients get a really great benefit from having both the ThermiSmooth treatment and the PDO thread lift done in conjunction with one another,” Dr. Dean notes. “That’s what we did with Michelle. We performed the ThermiSmooth treatment and then went in and did the PDO thread lift right behind it. Both can be done as freestanding treatments, but they complement each other very well when done together.”

Michelle can attest to that. Just as she hoped, the combination of treatments tightened and lifted the skin around her jaws, erased the crow’s feet around her eyes and even reduced the marionette lines around her mouth.

“Wow” Factor

“These treatments took between five and 10 years off my appearance,” she enthuses. “And it’s not just me who feels that way. I have several friends who said the same thing; and my husband, well, he’s just tickled pink with the results.

“My skin looks much tighter now, and it has an elasticity to it that wasn’t there before. I also feel like I have more volume in my cheekbones. The results are amazing. There’s definitely a wow factor. And it’s not just a physical change; there’s also a mental and emotional boost because you know you look better and that makes you feel better about yourself and gives you added confidence.”

Michelle described the ThermiSmooth treatments as “relaxing” and “not painful in any way,” and adds that her faith in Dr. Dean is so great that she hands out the doctor’s business cards and brochures wherever possible. She even has them at her store.

“I totally love Dr. Dean,” Michelle raves. “She’s wonderful, and her wellness plans have done wonders for me and for my internal and mental health. She gives me hope, so much so that sometimes I feel as if she saved my life.”

© FHCN article by Roy Cummings. Photo courtesy of Michelle Hammer. js
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    • Dean Wellness Institute

      Dean Wellness Institute has been serving Vero Beach, FL and the surrounding areas for over 15 years. Their wellness institute is focused on providing a holistic approach to wellness and improved health. They work closely with their patients to ... Read More

    • Melissa Dean, MD

      Melissa Dean, MD, specializes in internal and general preventative medicine and is an expert in treating menopause and andropause. She has also been expertly trained in the field of diabetes management, hormone replacement and nutrition. She e... Read More