What is a Facelift?
The facelift, technically known as “rhytidectomy,” has become a well-known, widely used procedure designed to reverse some of the signs of aging. Over time, gravity, sun exposure and other external factors take their toll on our faces and necks. These signs of aging, such as sagging skin, extra fat deposits, folds, creases, and wrinkles can be changed. A facelift can reverse the signs of aging by tightening muscle, removing fat and trimming excess skin, giving the face a fresher, more youthful look. To “grow old gracefully” now has new meaning!
Types of Facelifts
In addition to the standard facelift, now small incision techniques and mini facelifts are available for less downtime for the patient.
Incisions are made in areas that are inconspicuous and easily covered by hair. If you are having neck work done, there may be an incision made under the chin. If your hair is very short, you may want to consider a little bit of growth to effectively hide your scars.
Most facelifts are performed over several hours at outpatient surgery centers without lengthy stays. If you are supplementing your operation with other procedures such as forehead lift or eyelid surgery for more overall rejuvenation, the procedure time will be longer and may require two separate sessions.
Bandages are placed loosely over the head to minimize bruising and swelling during the immediate healing process, typically for 1-3 days.
The majority of facelifts are performed under local anesthesia with sedation so you will be drowsy and relaxed; insensitive to pain. Some surgeons prefer general anesthesia, in which case you will be put to sleep. Be sure to ask your aesthetic surgeon which options are best for you in considering your personal desires for the new, youthful you!
After the facelift procedure, Dr. Tarbet will wrap your incisions in bandages and may place drainage tubes. The next day the tubes can be removed and your hair can be washed. The following week any stitches or surgical clips that may be holding incisions closed are removed.
Most of your side effects will resolve themselves within 3 to 6 weeks and include swelling, numbness, bruising and a feeling of tightness or tension in the face and neck.
You may also experience stiff facial muscles and your face may look uneven or distorted. Facial sensation typically returns to normal and scars will become less itchy, lumpy, red, and raised within a few months.
The Lasting Results
The results of a facelift are not permanent, therefore, some patients choose to undergo another 5 to 10 years after their original procedure. However, the effects of a facelift are permanent. Years later, the face will continue to look better than if the patient had chosen not to get a rhytidectomy.
Risks of a Facelift
The following are some uncommon but possible complications of a facelift.
- Nerve Injury
Facelift Before & After
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