If you’ve ever thought about Coolsculpting, you might have found yourself wondering how it actually works. The idea of freezing off your fat can sound a bit fantastical, but it is actually based in sound science. Learn more about the science behind Coolsculpting, as well as what makes someone a good candidate for the treatment.
The Science of Cryolipolysis
The science of Coolsculpting began with a Popsicle. Scientists at Harvard University noticed that children had a tendency to develop dimples in their cheeks after eating the frozen treats. The condition even has a name, Popsicle panniculitis, that refers to the death of fat cells in the facial area after exposure to cold.
Children and babies have more fatty acids in their cheeks and other parts of the face than adults do, which is why exposure to cold foods can cause damage to that fat. The researchers who developed Coolsculpting took things a step further and began to test using freezing temperatures to destroy fat cells in pigs.
Instead of simply putting Popsicles on the area, the scientists developed a suction device that exposes fat cells to cold temperatures for an hour at a time. Since only the fat cells are targeted, other areas, such as the skin cells, aren’t damaged by the cold.
What Happens to the Fat?
Unlike other fat removal treatments, such as liposuction, Coolsculpting doesn’t immediately remove the destroyed fat cells from the body. That means that results aren’t always visible. Depending on how long it takes for the fat to be flushed away, it can take up to 16 weeks before you see full results from a Coolsculpting treatment.
After the treatment, your body processes and ultimately eliminates the fat cells. One way that it does that is by having the destroyed cells taken up by the lymphatic system. This is how your body usually deals with the fat you consume from food. Once the lymphatic system processes the fat, you naturally eliminate it from your body through urine and other waste.
What Makes Someone a Candidate for Coolsculpting?
The main thing to know about Coolsculpting is that it’s a fat removal treatment, not a weight loss treatment. If you have a few bulges of unwanted fat, a few sessions of Coolsculpting can be ideal for removing that fat. But if you need to lose a considerable amount of weight, it’s recommended that you lose the weight first, then consider Coolsculpting to get rid of any lingering bulges or deposits of excess fat.
A good candidate for the treatment should also be in good overall health. Some conditions might increase the risk for complications during or after treatment, so it’s a good idea to let your doctor know about any ongoing medical concerns you have.
It’s also usually a good idea to hold off on having Coolsculpting until after you’ve given birth and lost most of the baby weight if you’re pregnant. Pregnancy changes your body in often surprising ways, so it’s a good idea to have an understanding of how your body has changed before you schedule the treatment.
What Else Should You Know About the Treatment?
One thing that’s important to know about treatment is that it focuses on area of the body at a time. Some practices, such as Mirror Mirror Beauty Boutique, offer something called Dualsculpting, which involves using two applicators to treat two areas simultaneously. If you’re looking to treat the love handles, your arms or your thighs, Dualsculpting is often the way to go, as it lets you treat both sides in one hour, rather than taking two hours to do first one side, then the other.
It’s also important to understand that you might not get the full results you were after from a single treatment. Some people treat the same area twice to maximize their results. Your doctor can evaluate your body and the amount of fat you have and let you know if multiple treatments are appropriate for you.
One last thing to know about Coolsculpting: you might have some swelling or bruising in the treated area for a few days or weeks afterwards. Most people are able to resume their daily activities right after their treatment, but it’s still important to understand that you might feel a bit sore immediately after.
Dr. Paul Vitenas and the staff at Mirror Mirror Beauty Boutique in Houston, Texas, know all about Coolsculpting. The facility is one of the few to offer Dualsculpting and several staff members have attended and graduated from Coolsculpting University. To learn more about the treatment and the science behind it, call 281-810-9083 to schedule a consultation at Mirror Mirror today.