How Does a Facelift Work? Your Guide from Research to Recovery

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Sagging, wrinkles, and loose skin are common signs of aging that can affect how your face looks. Countless beauty products claim to resolve these concerns, but they rarely make a difference.

If you want a more youthful appearance with tighter and smoother skin, a facelift procedure may be the right choice for you.

What Is a Facelift?

A facelift is a plastic surgery procedure that aims to lift and tighten the skin to create a younger-looking complexion. Facelifts are a great option for older people who have more mature skin.

As you age, a natural decline in collagen and elastin can cause the skin to sag downwards and develop wrinkles. Facelifts resolve this by removing excess skin and lifting the remaining skin into a higher, tighter placement on the face.

What Happens During a Facelift?

If you are considering facelift surgery, knowing what you can expect is important. The following is a breakdown from preparation to recovery.

Doing Your Research

Before consulting with potential surgeons, research as much as possible. First, you must understand what facelift surgery is like and what results you can achieve.

You will need to research local plastic surgery centers and take an in-depth look at surgeons. This research will help you make the most informed decision on where to have your facelift performed.

Consulting with Your Surgeon

Once you have found a quality, reputable plastic surgeon, the next step is to schedule a consultation. Consultations are always necessary prior to any surgical procedure.

During your facelift consultation, your surgeon will examine your age-related changes and go over your aesthetic goals to confirm that a facelift can produce the results you are looking for. If so, you can schedule your surgery and begin preparation.

Preparing for Surgery

In the weeks leading up to your facelift surgery, you will need to get medical clearance from your regular physician. This clearance is to ensure that you are healthy enough for the procedure.

As a safety precaution for undergoing anesthesia, the surgical team will ask you to fast for at least 12 hours before surgery.

The Facelift Procedure

During a facelift, your surgeon will make an incision that runs around the back of the ear and along the hairline. Using this incision as an access point, your doctor will remove any excess skin and they will lift the remaining skin upwards. The skin is then sutured along the incision to hold the skin in a higher, tighter position.

This technique stretches the skin on the face and neck, smoothing out wrinkles and deep lines while resolving any sagging.

Some patients have what is called a “mini facelift.” During a mini facelift, your doctor will make an incision along the back of the ear and lift the skin on the lower portion of the face and jawline. This technique can smooth out wrinkles around the mouth while addressing sagging in the bottom part of the cheeks.

Recovering from a Facelift

Most facelifts are outpatient procedures, which means you can return home the same day as your treatment. There will be bandaging in place and small sutures along your incision. Bandaging is often removed about two to three days after treatment, and sutures can be taken out about one week afterward.

For four to six weeks after your facelift, you should avoid strenuous exercise or anything that could cause impact and trauma to the surgical site. Most people start to see the final outcome of their surgery around four weeks after treatment, and this outcome will continue to develop as any post-op swelling and bruising subside.

Facelift Surgery in Omaha

Westfield Plastic Surgery Center is a leading provider of facelift procedures throughout Omaha, NE. Visit us online and check out our blog to learn more about the benefits of facelift surgery.

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Dr. Ayoub is a board-certified plastic surgeon offering a wide variety of aesthetic and reconstructive plastic surgery procedures designed to help you become the best version of yourself. For more than 20 years, Dr. Ayoub and his team at Westfield Plastic Surgery Center have been an active part of the Omaha, NE community. Together they inspire a warm, welcoming environment for every patient.