What is a Facelift?
A facelift focuses on lifting the cheek area and tightening the neck. As we age, the cheek pads descend on the face, creating a flattened facial appearance and sagging jowls around the jawline. Sagging or “turkey neck” is another common sign of aging.
Am I a Good Candidate for a Facelift?
If you’re a healthy adult man or woman with realistic goals about the number of years that a face lift will “erase” from your appearance, you’re probably a good candidate for a facelift. No surgeon in the world can take your face back to your 20’s, regardless of facial surgery technique. Although there are many face lift procedures, such as the SMAS lift, mini face-lift, deep plane facelift and others, all are geared to remove as many years as possible from your appearance without making it obvious to your friends and family that you have had “work” done. Looking refreshed and rested is the goal of a good facelift.
What is a “Liquid” Facelift?
A liquid facelift is a temporary measure to address superficial wrinkles through the use of Botox® or Dysport® to relax the “muscles of animation,” such as the crow’s feet, the brow and the “11’s” between the brows. Dermal fillers are also used, such as Restylane, Radiesse, Juvéderm and/or Voluma, to plump up deeper wrinkles such as between the nose and mouth (nasolabial folds) and the mouth and chin (marionette lines), as well as to lift the cheeks (Voluma was designed specifically to lift the cheeks). On the plus side, a liquid facelift will make you appear more youthful. On the down side, results last only a few months to a year or so, and must be repeated to maintain them. Over time, a liquid face lift will become almost as expensive as a surgical face lift due to the need for repeated injections.
Remember, when you see me in consultation at one of my two Kalamazoo area plastic surgery locations, I’ll discuss all your options with you. At Southwest Michigan Plastic Surgery, my staff and I are 100% committed to your awareness of all your options, so you can make an informed decision regarding your Facelift—or any other—procedure.
What is Included in a Face Lift?
A traditional facelift focuses on the mid-face (cheek area) and neck. It does not address the eyelids, which are treated in a separate procedure called a blepharoplasty or eyelid lift. Many of my Battle Creek and Portage plastic surgery patients combine a blepharoplasty with their facelift for more complete rejuvenation.
For patients with inherited sagging in the neck, a neck lift can be performed without addressing the face at all. This is generally not the case, however, with patients suffering from age-related sagging in the face and neck. Those patients are usually in need of correction in both the neck and the face.
Where Will My Facelift Be Performed?
All of my cosmetic surgery procedures, including facelifts, are performed in one of two local accredited ambulatory surgical facilities near my Southwest Michigan plastic surgery office. I always work with board certified anesthesiologists. Many of the operating room staff at these centers have been working closely with me for the past 15 years. These same-day surgery centers offer you the safety of a hospital operating room without the exposure to hospital-based bacteria, plus the benefit of a friendly, caring, and personalized experience.
How Is A Facelift Performed?
Prior to your procedure, I will “mark” your face with a special pen. Once anesthesia has been performed, I will make incisions in front of and behind the ears. The skin and tissues of the face are lifted and facial muscle tightening is performed to “lift” the facial features. The skin is redraped and excess skin is incised. Tiny sutures are placed so that the final scars are nearly invisible except on close examination.
Recovery From a Facelift
Most of my Michigan facelift patients are surprised that they have so little discomfort after their procedure. One of my patients had her facelift on a Wednesday and conducted her church choir the following Sunday, albeit with a scarf over her head, but healing time and willingness to be in public during healing varies from person to person. Naturally, there’s some bruising and swelling, both of which can be treated with icepacks. Sleeping in a recliner for the first few nights after your face lift will help minimize swelling. I’ll see you in the office within a few days of your facelift procedure to be certain you’re doing well. I advise you not to engage in vigorous exercise, as it tends to flush the face and, of course, avoid any interactions that might end up with a blow to the face (basketball comes to mind!) while you’re healing.
The old commercial phrase, “Only my hairdresser knows for sure,” is true of a good facelift. People will think you look different, but they won’t be certain as to why. You won’t look pulled or tight, you’ll look rested and more youthful. If you feel younger inside than you look outside, call my office and let’s discover together what can be done to give you the more youthful look you deserve!