The fat reduction industry is filled with lots of procedures, equipment, and pills all of which are promising absurd results. Majority of the manufacturers are taking advantage of the huge demand for this service and in the end, they come up with solutions that either don’t work or deliver short-term results. Getting the right fat reduction solution that effectively tackles the problem without resulting in negative reactions is quite difficult. But in between all these methods, there are a few procedures that actually deliver results.
One of the most innovative fat reduction methods invented is the CoolSculpting procedure. This is a highly unique approach that works almost in a similar way as liposuction except there isn’t any equipment going inside you and hence the risk of complications is reduced significantly. In this review, we will help you learn more about this procedure, how it works, and how it is different from typical fat reduction procedures. By the end of it all, you should know whether it’s a decent option for you and how much you should expect to spend.
What is CoolSculpting?
CoolScupting, also known as cryolipolysis is a relatively new fat reduction technique that operates on the principles of cooling fat in the subcutaneous layer. After frequent cooling, this fat will be destroyed and then naturally absorbed by the body resulting in a slender appearance. A single CoolSculpting procedure doesn’t take more than an hour.
CoolSculpting gives you a rare opportunity of forgetting all about incisions, needles, anesthesia and other recovery drugs. Let’s also not forget that majority of traditional fat reduction procedures such as liposuction, lasers, and other techniques almost always affected other body organs and demanded more recovery time. With this operation, all the cooling takes place on your skin, and hence none of your internal tissues are ever affected.
The FDA also approves this non-invasive procedure. It delivers dramatic results that can even be targeted in one specific area to give the desired outcomes in, e.g., the tummy.
How does coolsculpting work?
The CoolScuplting procedure just like the name Cryolipolysis suggests works through the science of cooling fat cells to their death. It’s clinically proven that at high temperatures, fat cells in the body can be frozen until they die and this is achieved without affecting the surrounding cells and tissues. This technique utilizes advanced technology which ensures that the entire cooling process is kept as safe as possible.
Something else we loved about this coolsculpting procedure is how precise it is. The equipment used here can target specific areas, and the temperatures won’t affect the nerves or skin on the surface.
What makes Coolsculpting standout from fat reduction approaches like dieting is that it actually kills the fat cells. This is not a procedure that merely reduces the size of these cells, and neither is it a technique that tries to remove the cells while leaving a few still attached. CoolSculpting freezes fat cells to the point where they shrink and die! Your body will then naturally metabolize and excrete them from the body. This eliminates the chance of having the fat cells enlarge in size like is common in dieting.
Preparing for Cryolipolysis
Another advantage this coolsculpting procedure has over other invasive fat reduction operations is that minimal preparations are needed. It’s, however, essential for you to understand that this procedure does not in any way replace healthy diets. It is also why it cannot be said to be a treatment for obesity or overweight cases. Cryolipolysis is a technique that’s ideal for people dealing with bulges and other similar issues.
Your physician may recommend that you stop taking anti-inflammatories before the coolsculpting procedure to reduce chances of bruising.
The coolsculpting Procedure
Cryolipolysis is performed using a handheld device with applicators that look like the nozzles from a vacuum cleaner.
In this operation, your doctor will apply the applicator and gel pad in the targeted area for an hour or so depending on the amount of surface to be covered. The doctor will be moving the device across your skin with the cooling technology, and suction turned on for faster results. The temperatures here can be regulated depending on how much is needed in each area. If you are looking for results in a small area, then you can easily achieve this with a single physician. If there are multiple surfaces to be covered, then you may have to seek the services of a more equipped facility where several machines will be used to target different areas in a single session.
Most patients experience mild pinching, aching, stinging or pulling during this coolsculpting procedure. It’s a common feeling, and hence you shouldn’t be worried when it happens. A few minutes into the surgery the area will become numb, and all the pinching or pulling will subside. Generally, the whole procedure is associated with minimal to no pain at all. At the end of each procedure, the doctor will massage the treated area. This breaks up deep frozen tissues and will also allow your body to initiate the absorption and excretion process of fat cells.
Each session of CoolSculpting can destroy up to 20% fat cells! 20% is a massive result, and hence in some areas, a single session is more than enough to achieve the desired results.
In some people, the results can appear within weeks of starting the coolsculpting procedure. Full effects will, however, be noticed after 2-3 months.
The recovery period here is insanely smooth. CoolSculpting doesn’t need you to spend weeks or months off your job for you to fully recover. Most people usually resume their daily routines immediately after the coolsculpting procedure without experiencing any discomforts or complications.
Ideal Target Areas for Cryolipolysis
This procedure can be used almost anywhere in the body, but the following are the ideal areas of application:
- Love handles/ flanks
- Lower and upper abdomen
- Back and bra fat
- Chin area
- Below the buttocks
- Under the armpit
Benefits of CoolSculpting
The most prominent advantage of undergoing this coolsculpting procedure which also gives it an edge over dieting and exercises is that fat cells are destroyed. You, therefore, won’t have to deal with enlarged fat cells in future. You should, however, continue living a healthy lifestyle to enjoy the benefits for an even longer period.
Other benefits include:
- Zero recovery time
- Few reported cases of adverse reactions
- A low-risk technique that a lot of people can utilize
- Scarring and infections don’t occur because the skin is never affected
- Reduced risk of skin bumps or dimpling
- Useful for people that are within healthy weight but still dealing with fat cells in specific regions
- The results look and feel natural
Any Side Effects?
CoolSculpting is a reasonably safe procedure with few reported cases of side effects. Most negative reactions that occur usually disappear within a few days or weeks after the procedure. They include:
- Minor swelling
- Muscle cramping
- Skin sensitivity
A rare complication known as Paradoxical adipose hyperplasia may also occur. This is when after Coolsculpting the fat cells enlarge instead of freezing and dying. The incidence rate of this complication is 0.0051% and hence with services from a skilled physician you are almost guaranteed of a safe and successful procedure.
Individuals that should avoid CoolSculpting
CoolSculpting is a safe procedure, but some people are limited from using it. Anyone with the condition that changes their body’s responses to cool temperatures is discouraged from undergoing CoolSculpting. Individuals with the following conditions should avoid this technique:
- Raynaud’s disease
- Cold agglutinin
- Reduced skin sensitivity around the treatment area
- Diabetic neuropathy and other nerve conditions
- Skin diseases associated with a poor immune system, e.g., psoriasis and eczema etc.
To ensure that you are an ideal candidate for CoolSculpting you have to discuss your medical history with your physician before undergoing the procedure.
How much does CoolSculpting cost?
The cost of CoolSculpting varies from person to person depending on the condition of your skin and the amount of surface to be covered. Your location or city could also influence how much you spend on this procedure. A typical Coolsculpting operation for multiple areas should cost anything from $2,000 to $4,000. If you are targeting a small area that only requires a small applicator, e.g., the chin, then the cost could be around $900. Larger parts like the lower abdomen need equally large applicators and will cost around $1,500.
Bottom Line on Coolsculpting
CoolSculpting is not a treatment for obesity or overweight and neither should you use this procedure as a replacement for a healthy lifestyle. It is an entirely safe technique but is only ideal if you are looking to get rid of stubborn fat in specific areas. If the only thing between you and your fantasy body shape is a double chin, tummy, oversized thighs, arms or other areas, then CoolSculting is a great solution with a quick impact.
Alexa Bauer has a Master’s degree in nutrition from the University of Maryland and works as a full-time researcher at Swol Headquarters. Alexa Bauer spends her spare time blogging about cardiovascular health and nutrition. She’s specialized in weight loss.