As of 2017, According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the facelift is still one of the top five most popular cosmetic procedures being performed nationwide.
However, today there are so many more options for how to approach a facelift procedure to achieve each patient’s unique goals. In addition to the traditional facelift, there are mini facelifts, endoscopic or minimally invasive facelifts and non-surgical facelifts which make use of fillers in lieu of surgery.
Because of this, sometimes patients are confused about exactly what a facelift has to offer and what areas will be treated.
What Is a Facelift?
A traditional facelift is a surgical procedure that addresses the area of the face from the mid-cheeks down to the bottom of the chin and jawline. This procedure, called a rhytidectomy, is designed to lift, smooth and revitalize sagging skin and tissue from the mid to lower facial areas.
For patients who want to reverse the natural signs of aging that can create the appearance of facial jowls, a sagging chin and a weakened definition in the jawline, a facelift is a great choice.
However, a traditional facelift isn’t designed to address the whole face. For this reason, a facelift is frequently combined with other procedures such as an eyebrow lift to correct visible signs of aging in the forehead and eye areas as well.
What Procedure Will Lift My Eyebrows?
Sometimes patients come in seeking a facelift, when what they really want is to achieve a lift in the area of the eyes and the forehead. Here, a more appropriate procedure can be the brow lift.
A brow lift, which is sometimes also called a forehead lift, lifts and smoothes the skin of the forehead starting at the brow line and continuing to the start of the hairline.
Another procedure that can provide the appearance of a “lift” at the brow level is an eyelid lift, or blepharoplasty. An eyelid lift focuses on the upper and/or lower eyelid and sometimes includes both the upper and lower lids.
It is not uncommon for patients to have a brow lift, an eyelid lift and a facelift all in one procedure. For patients who are predominantly dissatisfied with how the upper portion of their face is aging, a brow lift and an eyelid lift can be performed together as a single procedure.
However, for patients with specific concerns that are limited to just one single area of the face, each procedure gives the option to address just that area as well.
Who Is a Good Candidate for a Facelift and/or Brow Lift?
If you are in overall good health, you are at or near your ideal body weight and you have realistic expectations for what surgery can address, you are likely a good candidate for a facelift and/or brow lift.
For the most complete healing, it is also important to be able to take a few days away from work and your regular activities to rest and recover. To this end, if you smoke or drink regularly, you may be asked to limit or cease these habits for a period of time before and after your procedures to give your tissues their best chance of healing fully.
How to Find Out What Procedure Is Best for Me?
The first step to scheduling a facelift is to schedule your initial consultation with Dilworth Facial Plastic Surgery. During your consultation, you can share your appearance goals and discuss which procedure(s) can best meet those goals.
Your surgeon will take your medical history and do an exam of the area to be treated. The surgeon will also take photos and make notes about your concerns and goals. You are also welcome to bring photos or illustrations to share more about what you hope to accomplish with your facelift procedure.
Your surgeon will answer all your questions. Your surgeon will also explain how to prepare for your procedure and what to expect during the recovery period. Before you leave, you will have an opportunity to schedule your procedure date if you wish.
What Is Recovery from a Facelift Like?
Your recovery from a facelift procedure will depend on what area(s) were treated and the extent of your procedure. In general, you can expect some swelling, bruising and manageable discomfort for the first day or two following your procedure.
However, any discomfort that is present can be easily alleviated with medications. You will be given prescriptions so you can fill them in preparation for your procedure date. It will be critical to follow your surgeon’s post-operative care instructions in detail to achieve the best results from your procedure.
Most patients can return to work and a limited daily schedule within a week and a half or two weeks following their procedure. However, it may take a few months to see the full results of your procedure as the skin continues to heal and the swelling fully resolves.
How Long Will the Results Last?
Each patient’s aging process is different, and it is important to remember that a facelift cannot stop the aging process. However, it can “reset the clock,” so to speak, to greatly slow down the visible appearance of aging.
With a skilled surgeon and careful recovery, you can expect long-lasting results!
About Dilworth Facial Plastic Surgery
Dr. Josh Surowitz and Dr. Andrea Garcia are the co-founders and medical directors for Dilworth Facial Plastic Surgery. Both Dr. Surowitz and Dr. Garcia are double board-certified facial plastic surgeons in head and neck surgery and facial plastic and reconstructive surgery.
Both doctors have been named as Top Doctors by Real Self. Working as a clinical team in and out of the operating clinic, Drs. Surowitz and Garcia deliver cutting edge, world class results with every procedure. They focus on the face, neck, ears, nose, head and eyes, often combining multiple procedures to achieve a patient’s appearance goals.
What do you think of Facelifts in general?