Losing weight can go a long way toward helping to eliminate double chin, but not everyone who has excess submental fat is overweight. Currently, there are exercises that can reduce a double chiin or patients can opt for face-lift surgery. Dr. Susan Winkle MD has presented findings of an alternative potential cure for double chin – an injectable drug that may rid the excess fat without the need for surgery.
Dr. Weinkle has found that a synthetically-derived deoxycholic acid promotes adipocytolysis or the destruction of the fat cell. This process is different from lipolysis, which is used to decrease the amount of fat within the cell, but doesn’t permanently remove the cell itself. Deoxycholic acid has been used previously in the emulsification of fats to prevent and dissolve gallstones.
The investigational agent, ATX-101 has been given to about 1,500 patients around the world in clinical trials. In the current phase III trial, about 87% of patients had significant reductions in their submental fat or double chin. The drug is administered using subcutaneous microinjections directly into the area for up to six treatment sessions at 28-day intervals.
As this is an important appearance issue for many patients, it is important to note that the trial participants also reported feeling less self-conscious and younger, and many felt as if they had lost weight, even though their body mass index remained the same.
The researchers reported no systemic effects, with no significant changes in hematology, clinical chemistry, urinalysis, or other vital signs. "As these fat cells were being disrupted, there was no change in blood lipids, which was carefully looked at after each session," Weinkle said.
She concluded that ATX-101 appears to be well tolerated and effective, and "may very well provide, in the future, an approach to submental fat for our patients who are so unhappy with this part of their body."
Until ATX-101 is ultimately approved for medical use by the FDA, those with a double chin may improve their appearance using four exercises specifically designed to tone the muscles of the face and jaw, firm skin along the jaw line, and help rid excess fat in the area.
1. The Chin Lift
The chin lift stretches and tones the muscles of the jaw, neck and throat. To perform the chin lift, follow these simple steps:
• Stand or sit with your spine erect.
• Tilt your head back until you are looking toward the ceiling.
• Pucker your lips tightly, as if you wanted to kiss the ceiling.
Try not to engage any other facial muscles while doing this exercise; just use your lips. Hold your lips in a puckered position for a five-count, then release. Repeat the exercise 5 to 10 times in a row.
2. The Neck Roll
The neck roll not only tones and stretches the muscles of your jaw, throat and neck, but also releases tension from your shoulders and can ease neck and shoulder pain. Follow these steps to perform the neck roll as a double-chin exercise:
• Stand or sit with an erect spine.
• While inhaling, gently turn your head to one side until your chin touches your shoulder. You should be looking to one side.
• While exhaling, slowly roll your head downward until your chin is resting on your chest. Remember to keep your spine erect and your shoulders squared.
• While inhaling, gently lift your head back up until your chin touches the other shoulder. You should be looking to the other side.
Repeat the full neck roll 5 to 10 times.
3. The Jaw Release
The jaw release exercise tones and stretches the muscles of your face. Perform the jaw release exercise as follows:
• Sit or stand with an erect spine.
• Inhale deeply through the nose; exhale slowly, while humming with your lips pressed tightly together. While you are inhaling and exhaling, move your jaw as if you were chewing.
• When you finish your exhale, open your mouth up as wide as you can. Inhale, and exhale from your open mouth with an audible "ahh" sound. Rest the tip of your tongue gently against the backs of your lower teeth to help the jaw relax.
Repeat both steps of this exercise 5 to 10 times.
4. Platysma Exercise
The platysma is the big muscle that runs from your jawline to your shoulder. Exercising it helps keep your chin and throat firm. To strengthen and tone the platysma, follow these steps.
• Sit or stand with an erect spine.
• Pull your lips back against your teeth, and turn the corners of your mouth downward.
• Open your mouth slightly, and activate the muscles of your jaw. Keep your lips pressed firmly against your teeth and the corners of your mouth turned down. The tendons on your neck should stand out.
• Wiggle your lower jaw up and down 5 to 10 times.
Repeat this exercise 5 to 10 times to tone your platysma.
Weinkle SH, et al "ATX-101 for the reduction of submental fat: Interim results from a multicenter, 12-month, phase IIIb, open-label study" AAD 2013.
FitDay.com: 4 Double Chin Exercises