Usually, when things sound too good to be true, they are. So it’s only logical that you’d be skeptical about Coolsculpting, a treatment that uses cold temperatures to destroy fat, helping you get a slimmer, more sculpted silhouette with no downtime.
But the truth is, Coolsculpting works, and there’s plenty of science to back it up. Researchers first got the idea for the treatment after they noticed that children who ate a lot of popsicles developed small dimples on their cheeks — the cold of the ice pops destroyed the fat cells in the area. The researchers were able to use that finding to develop the revolutionary Coolsculpting treatment process.
What Happens During a Coolsculpting Treatment?
During a Coolsculpting treatment, tissue in the treatment area is pulled up and placed between two paddles. The paddles, or applicators, are specially shaped and designed for different areas of the body. For example, there’s a Cool Mini applicator that is small enough for use on the under chin or neck area.
The paddles or applicators suction up the area you’re treated and apply cold to that area for about an hour. Although you’re likely to feel the cold at first, your skin quickly becomes numb. Many people find the process to be pretty comfortable and are able to relax and read or watch television during the procedure.
How much fat gets destroyed during a CoolSculpting treatment can vary from person to person. Usually, as much as 25 percent of the unwanted fat in an area can be eliminated by Coolsculpting. You can repeat treatments on the same area to improve your results.
What Happens to the Fat?
The cold temperatures destroy the fat cells in the treated area. That doesn’t mean the cells instantly vanish, though. Instead, your body needs time to metabolize them and flush them out as waste. Depending on your body, it can take up to 16 months for all of the destroyed fat cells to be flushed away and for full results to become visible.
Does Coolsculpting Lead to Weight Loss?
Although Coolsculpting works as a fat removal procedure and can be a non-surgical alternative to liposuction for some patients, it’s important to remember that it’s not a weight loss treatment. The procedure can help you lose, at most, just a few pounds. It’s for getting rid of small areas of unwanted fat, not pounds and pounds.
Usually, the treatment is recommended as the “finishing touch” on a weight loss journey. After you’ve lost your baby weight from pregnancy or have successfully dropped 15 or 20 pounds, you can consider Coolsculpting to get rid of any areas of stubborn fat that diet and exercise seem unable to eliminate.
Will the Fat Come Back?
The fat that gets destroyed by Coolsculpting won’t come back. It’s removed from your body for good. But that doesn’t mean that you won’t ever put on weight or get bigger. Coolsculpting can be a permanent way to sculpt and shape your body, but it’s up to you to work to maintain your results.
That means sticking to a healthy diet and exercise program and doing what you can to maintain your weight. Gaining weight after Coolsculpting can mean that the remaining fat cells in an area get bigger. The old cells are gone, but the enlarged ones are there to take their place.
Is Coolsculpting Safe?
Coolsculpting does sound like it’s come straight out of a science fiction novel, which can make you wonder if it’s really a safe procedure. Although there are some minor risks involved with the treatment, it is generally safe. There are fewer complications with Coolsculpting than there are with a surgical procedure, such as liposuction. One potential concern is that exposure to the cold temperatures can cause nerve damage, making the treated area feel numb for some time (sometimes months) after treatment. Such complications are very rare, however.
About Dr. Ran Rubinstein
An experienced plastic surgeon can help you decide if Coolsculpting is right for you. Dr. Ran Y. Rubinstein, a board-certified plastic surgeon, regularly offers Coolsculpting to patients at his practice in New York. Dr. Rubinstein also offers patients a variety of procedures, from facelift to rhinoplasty, at Laser & Cosmetic Surgery Specialists, PC in Newburgh, New York. To schedule a consultation with Dr. Rubinstein, call 845-863-1772 today.