A dimpleplasty is a type of plastic surgery used to create dimples on the cheeks. Dimples are the indentations that occur when some people smile. They’re most often located on the bottoms of the cheeks. Some people may also have chin dimples.

Not everyone is born with this facial trait. In some people, dimples are naturally occurring from indentations in the dermis caused by the deeper facial muscles. Others may be caused by injury.

Regardless of their causes, dimples are regarded by some cultures as a sign of beauty, good luck, and even fortune. Due to such perceived benefits, the number of dimple surgeries has increased significantly in recent years.

When considering dimpleplasty, you’ll want to find an experienced surgeon. Some dermatologists are trained for this type of surgery, but you may need to see a facial plastic surgeon instead.

Once you’ve found a reputable surgeon, make an initial appointment with them. Here, you can discuss the risks versus benefits of dimple surgery. They can also determine whether you’re a good candidate for plastic surgery. Finally, you’ll figure out where the dimples should be placed.

The cost of dimpleplasty varies, and it isn’t covered by medical insurance. On average, people spend about $1,500 on this procedure. If any complications occur, you can expect the overall cost to increase.

A dimpleplasty is performed on an outpatient basis. This means you can get the procedure done at your surgeon’s office without having to go to the hospital. You may also not need to be put under general anesthesia.

First, your doctor will apply a topical anesthetic, such as lidocaine, to the area of skin. This helps to ensure you don’t experience any pain or discomfort during the surgery. It takes about 10 minutes for the anesthetic to take effect.

Your doctor then uses a small biopsy instrument to make a hole in your skin to manually create a dimple. A small amount of muscle and fat is removed to aid in this creation. The area is about 2 to 3 millimeters in length.

Once your doctor creates the space for the future dimple, they then position a suture (sling) from one side of the cheek muscle to the other. The sling is then tied to set the dimple permanently in place.

Recovery from dimpleplasty is relatively straightforward. You don’t need to stay in the hospital. In fact, you can usually go home immediately after the surgery. Soon after the procedure, you might experience mild swelling. You can apply cold packs to reduce swelling, but it will usually go away on its own within a few days.

Most people can return to work, school, and other regular activities two days after having a dimpleplasty. Your surgeon will likely want to see you a couple of weeks after the procedure to assess the results.

Complications from a dimpleplasty are relatively rare. However, the possible risks may be serious if they do occur. Some of the possible complications include:

  • bleeding at the site of surgery
  • facial nerve damage
  • redness and swelling
  • infection
  • scarring

If you experience excessive bleeding or oozing at the site of the procedure, see your doctor right away. You could have an infection. The earlier the infection is treated, the less likely it will spread to the bloodstream and cause further complications.

Scarring is a rare but certainly undesirable side effect of a dimpleplasty. There’s also a chance that you won’t like the results once they’re done. It’s difficult to reverse the effects of this type of surgery, however.

As with other types of plastic surgery, dimpleplasty can carry both short-term and long-term risks. Overall though, the risks are rare. Most people who have the surgery have a positive experience, according to the Indian Journal of Plastic Surgery.

Before opting for this type of surgery, you’ll need to accept that the outcome is permanent, whether you like the results or not. This seemingly simple surgery still requires a lot of thoughtful consideration before you choose to do it.