Facelift is a surgical procedure to improve visible signs of aging in the face and neck.
Sagging in the midface can create a deep crease below the lower eyelid and between the nose and the mouth that may make a tired and sad appearance. Fat that has fallen or is displaced and loss of muscle tone in the lower face may create jowls. Loose skin and excess fatty deposits under the chin and jaw can make a person appear to have a “double chin”.
A facelift is designed to correct all of these aging features, restoring a more youthful, rested appearance with uplifted contours and improve tone in facial skin and underlying muscle. The facelift does not change the fundamental appearance and cannot stop the aging process. Rejuvenation procedures typically performed in conjunction with a facelift are brow lift, to correct a sagging brow and eyelid surgery to rejuvenate aging eyes.
A facelift is best performed on adult men and women who fell that their outward facial aging no longer reflects the youth and vigor they feel physically and emotionally. It can only be performed surgically; non-surgical rejuvenation treatments cannot achieve the same results. Most patients are reassured to know that a facelift will not change their basic appearance, but will restore it to a younger version of itself that will then continue to age naturally over time.
After facelift, a bandage will gently be placed around the face to minimize swelling and bruising. A thin tube may be present to drain any excess blood that may collect under the skin.
Initial healing will include swelling and may include numbness and discomfort that can be controlled with medication. Facial movements may be temporarily restricted and the skin will look bruised or discolored. A return to normal activity is usually possible within a few days of surgery. For the most part, facelift incisions are well healed within a week. The patient will be ready to return to work sometime between 2 to 4 weeks. Cosmetics can usually camouflage any bruising that remains.
Over time, the incision lines from a facelift are well concealed within the hairline and in the natural contours of the face and ear. The final result restore a more youthful and rested appearance.
Healing will continue for at least several more weeks as swelling resolves and incision lines continue to improve. It is important to practice sun protection until the healing process is fully complete.
Risks associated with a surgical facelift include infection, hematoma, correctable hair loss at the incisions, facial nerve injury with weakness, facial asymmetry, skin loss with scarring, numbness and risks associated with anesthesia.
It may take several months for swelling to fully dissipate and up to 6 months for incision lines to mature. Sun protection will help to maintain the rejuvenated appearance and a healthy lifestyle will also help extend the results.