Joe Niamtu III, DMD – Cosmetic Facial Surgery

Garth Brooks is the Nicest Performer in the World.

Last year I had the pleasure to meet and spend some time with Garth Brooks while he was in Richmond to film some promotional commercials for the Commonwealth.

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This guy meets about a million people a year, but that evening he acted like my wife and April and I were friends he knew all his life.  I have met a lot of celebrities over the years and usually it is a handshake and a picture.  Garth was at the reception and he spoke and took pictures with everyone there.  Later in the evening, he came up to April and I and remembered our names from earlier, signed my guitar and asked us about our life.  We chatted for about 15 minutes and the guy was so polite I could not get over it.  We talked about his life, his family, a cosmetic surgeon buddy of mine (Angelo Cuzalina in Tulsa who went to college with Garth) and what he does in his spare time.

Recently, he was doing a concert in Minneapolis and Teresa Shaw held up a sigh “Chemo this morning, Garth tonight. Enjoy the dance” (The Dance is one of Garth’s biggest hit songs).

When Garth saw the sign, he dedicated the song to the lady, but then brought her to the front of the stage and gave her his favorite guitar.  This was amazing and touching.  If you haven’t seen this video, click below and enjoy.  The world needs more Garth’s.

 

Video of the Performance

 

 

 

Video of Garth and the Teresa Shaw on Entertainment Tonight

Joe Niamtu, III DMD

Cosmetic Facial Surgery

Richmond, Virginia

www.lovethatface.com

 

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The Aesthetic Academy 2014

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It is my honor to be among the invited faculty at the Aesthetic Academy in Washington, D.C. in several weeks.  I look forward to sharing the podium with plastic surgery palls Dr. Jorge Perez and Dr. Miles Graivier.  I have been on numerous programs with both of these docs and always enjoy them.  Dr. Phil Werschler is a personal friend and hero is one of the best known cosmetic dermatologists and is serving as the meeting chair.  The other speakers are also well known educators and I am excited to teach and learn with everyone.

Michael Morretti and his staff run the very well known Aesthetic Show each year in Vegas and is one of the best and most fun conferences.  I have lectured there for the past 5 years and look forward to it.  Both of these venues are multispecialty  events so there is a tremendous amount of teaching and learning from some of the best docs both nationally and from abroad.  I look forward to seeing friends from around the country in D.C.

Joe Niamtu, III DMD

Cosmetic Facial Surgery

Richmond, Virginia

www.lovethatface.com

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The Tapering Face of Youth

My job, all day, every day, is to discuss face and neck aging with patients.  85% of these patients are female and it is not uncommon to see a 40 year old with very minor aging that is driving them crazy.  This is a natural phenomenon as the worst aging is the first aging; or at least in the eye of the beholder.  I frequently tell these patients that if I could take a video of them today and show it to them in 10 years, they would laugh that they were concerned about this minor aging.  Unfortunately, it just gets worse.  Aging is not a bad thing, in fact it is a privilege denied to many!  Well-adjusted individuals will accept the natural aging process, although no one welcomes it. What I do for a living is to reverse aging with surgical and non-surgical procedures.  The best patients are those that are not trying to look 20 years younger (that is when people look plastic), but rather they want to look as good as they can for their age.  Natural cosmetic surgery should whisper, not scream and my goal is to make patients look more youthful and natural.

One of the big things to realize is how our face and neck ages.  When we are young our face is a tapering oval like a heart or upside down egg.  This is because the youthful fat volume and tight skin in the midface produce roundness and the tight jaw and neck skin produce a tapered and defined chin and jawline.

As we age, we undergo atrophy of the cheek fat and have sagging soft tissues which makes the youthful midface droop.  This causes accumulation of tissue at the jawline (jowls) and we simultaneously undergo gravitational changes and fat accumulation of the chin and neck.  All of the above cause the once tapering oval face to become square.  The Loss of a midface volume and increased tissue of the jawline and neck are what makes look old.

 

The figures below shows illustrate the shape of the youthful face and an aging face.

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The figure below show an actual patient on whom I performed facelift surgery.  The pictures illustrate the “square” face and jaw line in the before picture and the tapered oval face after the procedure.

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I have performed almost 1,000 facelift procedures and it is for these reasons that it remains my favorite surgical procedure.  No other cosmetic surgery procedure carries the physical and emotional impact of a well done facelift.  You can hide mediocre breast, belly and butt surgery, but the face is in the open for everyone to see.

To find out more about cosmetic facial surgery visit www.lovethatface.com

 

Joe Niamtu, III DMD

Cosmetic Facial Surgery

Richmond, Virginia

www.lovethatface.com

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Botox for the Gummy Smile

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Some patients show excessive teeth or gum (gingiva) when they smile.  This is usually from excess downward growth of the upper jaw and is called vertical maxillary excess.  This is classically treated by oral and maxillofacial surgery and orthodontics.  The surgeon shortens the upper jaw so it is in a more natural position and the smile is normalized without tooth and gum excess upon smiling.

Some patients cannot have this surgery for various reasons and request Botox Cosmetic (or Dysport or Xeomin) treatment to weaken the smiling muscles so that the lip does not move upward as much.

The patient shown above was treated with a single treatment of 2 Botox injections above the upper lip.  This weakens the smiling muscles and prevents the lip from elevating as much, which shows less teeth and gum.  This treatment is temporary and last about 3 months.

For more information about cosmetic facial surgery visit www.lovethatface.com

 

Joe Niamtu, III DMD

Cosmetic Facial Surgery

Richmond, Virginia

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Uber: A Paradigm Shift in Transportation

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Uber means “super” in German, and it is super.

Understandably, 99% of my blogs deal with cosmetic surgery but from time to time I enjoy writing about noteworthy situations and Uber falls into that category.

Uber is a ride service that is digital, easy, affordable, safe and hip.  It also represents a paradigm shift.  A paradigm shift is a process where older technology is replaced by a newer advancement that makes the previous technology obsolete.  For instance, horses were the main form of transportation until the combustion engine was invented, then it replaced horses on the streets forever.

Taxis are rarely fun.  Too often there are unfriendly drivers, cabs can be dirty and smell of cigarettes.  In big cities, taking a cab is as easy as walking out in the street, but in smaller cities like Richmond, taking a cab (if you can find one) can be an arduous and expensive process.  I live and work on the Southside of Richmond.  My office is technically in Midlothian.  We frequently have out of town and international patients and surgeons coming to our office for surgery or learning.  Getting a taxi from RIC to our office is not too hard, but trying to get a cab to go from our office to anywhere else can take over an hour and sometimes, you can’t get anyone.  This has been a real problem for years.

In addition, no one wants to drink and drive.  A dinner with one or two glasses of wine could put the average person over the legal driving limit.  Trying to get a taxi to and from the Richmond surburbs can add hours to an evening and having to wait around an hour for a cab to get to you for a 20 minute ride was frustrating.  Finally, no cab driver wants to take someone on a short fare because they don’t make money.  I have had rude drivers that resented having to take a short fare.

Enter Uber!  Uber is a 24/7 ride service that has been around bigger US cities and other countries for some time.  Drivers apply to use their own car and there is a stringent review process of the person and vehicle.  Most of the drivers are younger, but I have ridden with some seniors as well.  I have had drivers that were dental students, graphic designers, pizza delivery people that do better here, and a variety of drivers that just enjoy the “adventure” and extra cash.  The hours are very liberal and basically the Uber drivers can decide if and when they take a call.  They make 80% of the fare and tipping is optional and not expected.  This is entirely electronic.  You must download the Uber app on your smart phone and register with PayPal or a credit card.  Everything is digital and no cash is ever exchanged.

To get a ride, you log on and the phone GPS shows your location, then you simple select your destination (Uber is preprogrammed for most common locations in any city).  The driver acknowledges that they are on the way and you can actually see them on the map.  Their time to pick you up is updated in real time, so you can actually see an icon of their car coming towards your house with the exact time of arrival, i.e. “6 minutes”.  An automatic text message is generated when they arrive at your pick up location.  I have done about 10 Uber trips and every single driver was nice and polite and their vehicles were spotless.  We have had fun conversations and they have pretty sophisticated computers in their car to get you to your destination.  If you want to, you can split the fare with your other riders.  Most cars can only hold 4 passengers although I am told they will have vans, town cars and SUV’s.  Alos planned is a “pick up service” for deliveries, such as food or goods. The taxi industry is understandably upset with this competition but what surprises me is they were not the ones to innovate passenger transportation.  It is sort of like when Kodak did not see digital photography coming and lost out on the biggest photographic innovation in a century due to lack of foresight.  I am told that Uber will also let some taxi services participate by their rules and paradigm.

I can leave my home on the Southside and get 4 people to Carytown for about $15.  Then if we desire, we can hop around the area with short rides and smiling drivers for a couple of bucks.  I don’t have to worry about umbrellas and especially parking which can be a big problem.  When you get out of the car, you don’t do anything, it is all automated and you receive an email receipt with the details and map of your trip.  You can rate the driver and the driver can rate you!  Very Gen X!

Since the service is new in Richmond, I have had several instances where no car was available in my area but his has improved as college students have returned and more people are using Uber.  In the Fan, Slip and Bottom, rides are usually less than a minute away,

There are other similar services that compete with Uber and one is in Richmond.  This is likely to be the future of taxi transportation and I have been very happy with it and now use Uber when traveling to other cities.

 

Joe Niamtu, III DMD

Cosmetic Facial Surgery

Richmond, Virginia

www.lovethatface.com

 

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Domestic Violence, Ray Rice, and the NFL

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Sometimes it takes a tragic or unfortunate situation to shed light on very important topics such as Robin Williams’s untimely death which brought attention to depression and suicide.  The recent video that showed NFL star Ray Rice knock out his girlfriend, as horrific as it was, will no doubt bring much needed attention to the topic of domestic violence.  Something positive will come out of something negative.

First and foremost, there is never, ever any reason to physically or mentally abuse women and all men must get this message early on in childhood.  A man’s job is to protect women, for most men this is a natural response, almost inbred, but for many, they have grown up in a household or culture where spousal abuse is common.  They don’t grow up with this message of female respect and the perpetuation of physical violence is passed down generationally.

The biggest drawback of discussing domestic violence is the fact that the average (and intelligent) person does not fully understand the cycle.  My wife and I have been active supporters of Safe Harbor Shelter (April served on the board and we have both served as spokespersons and fund raisers) and until this I have to say that I did not fully appreciate the depth of the complex cycle of captivity.  Listening to the personal stories of violence victims makes it all crystal clear.

I describe this as captivity because the aggressor wants to “own” the victim and uses physical violence, mental punishment, jealousy, sexual and financial control and numerous other manipulating factors to maintain control of their spouse. Substance abuse is also a frequent common denominator.  Although we most often think of females as being the victims, domestic violence can flow in either direction.

The biggest misunderstanding concerns the simple statement “she deserves it, because she did not leave after the first time it happened”.  We are also seeing this in the Ray Rice incident where people are saying “she married him after that, I can’t believe it”.  What the average person may not realize is that many of these women are trapped.  They have been manipulated, controlled, beaten and robbed of all self-esteem so that they are 100% reliant on their spouse for existence.   “You are worthless, you are ugly, you are a loser, you cannot survive without me”, these are the frequent words of an abuser.  They have been made to feel worthless, they are given money or sex in a manner to further exhibit control and are intentionally made to feel that they cannot survive without their aggressor.  They are afraid of harm to themselves or their children or family if they don’t comply with their “captor”.  Their spouse may even defend the abuser because it keeps the abuser happy and may prevent another beating.  Unfortunately, many domestic abuse victims ultimately are murdered by their aggressor in the final act of ultimate control.  It is not uncommon to see a local newspaper article where a domestic violence victim took out a restraining order on their abuser and were murdered shortly after that.  Our courts and law enforcement needs to be more involved when someone identifies a spouse as a threat.

Friends and family also need to be acutely aware of the signs of domestic violence because the victims will frequently deny it out of fear.  Having treated facial trauma in local emergency departments over the last 30 years, I have seen many circumstances of domestic violence.  It is remarkable that after suturing of a facial laceration from being punched by her husband the victim leaves with the aggressor as he is her only ride home.  She has nowhere else to go, to one to turn to, she has no job, no money, no protection, no self-esteem and fears for her children’s safety.  She has to go back home.

I promise you that anyone reading this blog knows someone that is or has been a domestic violence victim.  You may not realize it, but if you think it is possible, you need to offer them help.  Safe Harbor provides emergency services for domestic violence victims and can be reached at

www.safeharborshelter.com

Don’t wait, help them now, it may save their life.

 

Joe Niamtu, III DMD

Cosmetic Facial Surgery

Richmond, Virginia

www.lovethatface.com

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Cosmetic Eyelid Surgery: Plain and Simple

Aging changes occur at an earlier age in the upper face and hence I am performing cosmetic eyelid surgery  (blepharoplasty)  from the mid fourth decade on.  Aging changes in the eyelids include excess sagging skin, fat bags and wrinkly skin. With aging, the upper eyelid can skin hang below the lashes and can decrease vision and prevent women from wearing eye makeup.

Laser technology has greatly simplified cosmetic eyelid surgery and procedures that once took 90 minutes and produced a lot of bleeding, can now be completed in 20 minutes with no blood loss.  In addition, with laser technology, there is no need to excise skin on the lower eyelids.  The means no visible suture line, no stitches and brand  new youthful skin in the place of the sun damaged and wrinkled skin.  More information on the actual laser procedures can be seen  here.  Recovery for cosmetic eyelid surgery varies from 7-10 days, although the average patient could wear sunglasses and return to light activity much earlier.

The case shown below required less than 30 minutes of surgery time with light IV sedation in our accredited in office surgery center.   The patient took one week off of work for recovery.

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For more information about eyelid rejuvenation or cosmetic facial surgery by Dr. Niamtu visit www.lovethatface.com

 

Joe Niamtu, III DMD

Cosmetic Facial Surgery

Richmond, Virginia

www.lovethatface.com

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Angel Faces

Several years ago I was invited to speak in New York City at a major laser meeting and part of my lecture involved my treatment of burn injuries.  Other surgeons also reported their experiences and it was a great meeting.  Between all the doctor lectures I had an opportunity to hear a talk by Lesia Cartelli.  This was one of the most inspirational and emotional presentations I have ever heard in my life.  Lisa sustained burns of 50% of her body and details her emotional struggle and challenges and how she dedicated her life to helping other girls with burns.  Her book has just been released and I was extremely honored to be quoted on the inside cover (along with Sanjay Gupta, Dr. Phil and Barbara Walters, none the less).  Lisa is making a difference in the lives of many young women.  Her story is touching and her work truly is angelic.  It has been my honor to call her a friend.

 

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Lesia Cartelli, Founder and Director of Angel Faces<sup>®</sup>

 

Lesia Cartelli endured a serious burn injury over 50% of her face and body from a natural gas explosion at her grandparents’ at the age of nine. The home was completely destroyed yet her spirit survived. Not wasting her pain, Lesia is the founder and director of Angel Faces®, the first and only national nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide healing retreats and aftercare support designed to inspire adolescent girls with severe facial disfigurements to achieve their optimum potential and develop meaningful relationships for themselves, their families and their communities.

 

 

 

 

Joe Niamtu, III DMD

Cosmetic Facial Surgery

Richmond, Virginia

www.lovethatface.com

Helping A Beautiful Little Girl

From time to time I like to discuss touching cases that impact my life and practice.  Earlier this year I received a pleading and heartfelt letter from a low income single mother in Atlanta whose daughter has

dprotruding ears and was being taunted and bullied by her peers.  The mother could not afford the surgery and we agreed to treat her daughter free of charge.  Obviously, it is impossible to treat all requests free of charge, but we do our best to help disadvantaged patients, especially children as often as we can.  I love my profession and it is so gratifying to posses the ability to help patients who have no where else to go.

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To learn more about cosmetic Facial Surgery visit www.lovethatface.com

 

Joe Niamtu, III DMD

Cosmetic Facial Surgery

 

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Treating Small Birthmarks with the Iridex 940 Laser by Joe Niamtu, III DMD

Dr. Niamtu discusses and shows a video of the treatment of a small port wine stain birthmark using the 940 wavelength laser.

For more information about lasers or cosmetic facial surgery by Dr. Niamtu, visit www.lovethatface.com

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