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What is this double chin and How did it get here?!? How do I get rid of my double chin?

One chin is enough for me, thank you. What exactly is this unwelcomed other chin and why is it making its appearance? Let’s look at some of the causes for double chin and how to get rid of it.

Reason #1: Genetics & short chin
Genetics, family history, or in other words, having it run in the family can also predispose you to developing a double chin. Our genes are at least partly responsible for our facial bone structure, jawline, and amount of fat in the area. Take the example of someone who has inherited the combination of a short or receding chin, coupled with a certain amount of fat under the chin or in the neck. This would be the perfect storm for a double chin to form. On top of plain ‘ol genetically-inherited bone structure, an overbite (aka buck teeth) or injury to the mandible (one of the facial bones) may also lead to the development of a short chin. 

Solution: Unfortunately, there is no easy fix for genetics or bone structure. To alter bone structure, facial reconstructive surgery would be the way to do that. Although the underlying scaffolding of bone does play a role in the formation of a double chin, it is often not the only culprit, and neither is it the most common.

Reason #2: Ageing or excess skin
As we age, we lose bone and muscle mass and gravity gets the better of our skin. The combination of saggy skin, plus the loss of underlying soft tissue volume is a recipe for the  double chin- mainly consisting of loose skin. 

Solution: Some choose the route of surgically snipping off the extra skin. But along with surgery, comes a gamut of risks and commitments you may not be prepared to take. Fortunately, there are now plenty of non-surgical options available in our day and age. Many of these have little or no downtime. One of the options is Coolsculpting Elite which is a fat reduction treatment using controlled cooling methods. 

Another popular non-invasive facial contouring treatment is the HIFU treatment. High-Intensity Focused Ultra Sound is a regenerative, non-surgical facelift treatment for lifting and maintenance. It can be used around the eyes, face, neck and jawline for the purpose of facial contouring.

Reason #3: Posture
Some suggest that a similar process happens, thanks to our tech. There is a possibility that the constant posture of looking down at our screens, slumped over, weakens our neck and jaw muscles. Some posit that the loss of volume causes skin to sag. And again saggy skin→ double chin. Although there isn’t a substantial amount of evidence right now to back this up, posture most definitely does exaggerate the appearance of a double chin. For an easy fix simply make it a habit to maintain a more neutral position of your head and neck as much as possible.

Reason #4: Underlying diseases
Double chin might be due to a general puffiness or water retention in the face.In these cases, it is important to rule out the possibility of a more sinister underlying condition like heart disease or Cushing’s Syndrome. Ironically dehydration can also lead to water retention and the appearance of puffiness and a double chin. Sometimes, the appearance of a double chin could actually be due to a mass in the neck, especially if its consistency is firmer than that of fatty tissue. 

Solution: If you suspect there might be an underlying health issue leading to your double chin, consult a doctor for a comprehensive investigation into your symptoms. They will likely assess you based on your medical history and blood tests and even medical imaging. 

Reason #5: Neither skin, nor water
Finally, the most common reason for formation of a double chin is… you guessed it: Fat- the accumulation of fat under the lower jaw and neck. Sometimes, this is referred to as submental fat.  

Solution: There is the option of having invasive surgeries like liposuction or facelifts, or neck lifts that involve surgically removing excess skin or surgically shortening muscles. These procedures would have to be done under general anaesthesia and are accompanied by significant post-surgical pain, bruising, redness and swelling. 

Nowadays, there are also a number of non-invasive alternatives. Although the results from the non-invasive options may not be as drastically evident and immediate as in the invasive procedures, if you are reluctant to endure surgical side effects, these options will still get the job done. These options administer radiofrequency energy or even extreme cold to remove fat cells. 

How do I prevent the dreaded double chin?

To prevent fat under the chin, would be to prevent fat accumulation generally in the body. But weight management does not necessarily mean starving yourself or doing lots of strenuous exercise. Consistently eating a healthy, balanced diet and keeping your body active are 2 strategies to maintain a healthy weight. Contact a trusted healthcare professional to discuss a weight loss regime that is safe for you.

Maintaining a good posture will also help to improve the appearances of a double chin.

Can jaw, neck and chin exercises help?

There are countless articles and hearsay out there about face and neck exercises for getting rid of a double chin. Unfortunately, there is no scientific evidence to prove that exercises are actually effective in removing double chin. Even if theoretically speaking, muscles got slightly more toned and fat is burnt through the exercises, these changes will be minimal. Exercise alone as the sole treatment approach will never bring the issue to resolution. 

Does Gua Sha work?

Many claim that Gua Sha tools are effective in reducing a double chin when performed regularly for weeks. This is likely how it works: As the Gua Sha tool and skin rollers are dragged along the lines of lymphatic vessels, this facilitates the removal of accumulated lymph fluid in the area.

This non-surgical option sounds promising, but here’s the disappointing news. These tools are not actually able to remove fat. Hence, they are only able to very temporarily reduce the appearance of fullness in the area. And in this, only to a very limited extent and time, until fluid returns again.

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