A facelift, also known as a rhytidectomy, is a surgical procedure performed to perfect signs of aging like jowls caused by loss of skin tone in the lower face, deep creases under the eyes or that extend from the nose to the corners of the mouth, or sagging skin.
Types of Facelifts
There are several kinds of facelifts that can be available, and they include:
- Traditional facelift – The surgeon makes an incision in front of the ear that extends to the hairline or into the hair. The surgeon then draws the incision downward in front of the ear and then curves under and behind the ear. The surgeon may tighten the deeper tissues of the face and cut away any excess skin. He then closes the wound with sutures and staples, applies bandages and many attach a drain behind the ear to drain off excess fluids or blood.
- Liposuction – This method is used for the neck or the lower part of the face. It can be performed by itself or in conjunction with the traditional method.
- Endoscopy – This method can be used for brow lifts and face lifts. The doctor uses smaller incisions which is less traumatic for the patient and allows for a quicker recovery time. The doctor does not cut away folds of skin which also makes the procedure easier on the patient.
- Lasers – In the procedure called laser neck and jaw liposculpture and resurfacing, the doctor uses lasers. The surgeon makes only a one-inch incision under the chin, and the patient needs only a local anesthetic.
Regardless of the type, the procedure takes two to five hours. Some kinds of facelift require only a local anesthetic while others need a general anesthetic. In the latter case, the patient may spend the night in the hospital. The results of a facelift typically last between five and ten years.
The Recovery Period
Most patients need about a week to recover from their facelift surgery, although they may resume normal activities a day or two after the surgery. Bruising, swelling and discomfort are typical and may last for a few days. Any sutures or staples will be removed five to ten days after the surgery.
During the recovery period, the patient should follow the doctor’s instructions concerning post-operative care. The patient needs to keep any bandages or incisions dry and follow instructions regarding bathing or washing.
It takes two or three weeks to recover fully from a facelift as the swelling and bruises fade. Some muscle stiffness and numbness will persist for a while, and this is normal. Scars from the procedure typically fade after about a year.
Schedule Your Consultation
If you’re interested in the age-defying effects of a facelift, Transformations Plastic Surgery can help. Our medical team, led by Dr. Landon Pryor, will work with you to determine the safest and most effective treatment plan for your needs. Contact Transformations Plastic Surgery today to schedule your consultation.