The Face lift is a procedure which can make you look younger and fresher faced by tightening the muscles and tissues of your neck and face and removing any excess skin and fat. With age our facial tissue and muscles lose their elasticity and the skin tends to sag. We may get creases between the mouth and nose, a flabby jaw line and fatty deposits around the neck. A face lift aims to reverse this natural ageing process.
The procedure: Face Lift:
There are many different methods of carrying out this procedure and they are dependent on the particular individual’s needs and the surgeon’s preferences. The procedure is normally carried out under a general anaesthetic and the most common method is as follows:
- Incisions are made at the hairline (therefore hidden) above the temple and continue down along the front of the ears and behind the ear lobe to the lower scalp. Occasionally another incision is needed under the chin if the neck needs some sculpting as well.
- The surgeon then separates the skin from the fat and muscle and cuts or suctions out the fat in order to sculpt the face.
- The endoscopic method is becoming more popular as it enables the surgeon to see the tissue and muscle on a TV screen. This technique is most commonly used in younger patients who do not have too much excess skin to remove.
The procedure typically takes 2 to 3 hours.
Recovery period: Face lift
- A bandage is applied after the surgery to reduce swelling and aid the healing process. This bandage is typically removed after 1-2 days.
- Swelling, bruising and soreness are normal after surgery and these are normally controlled with medication.
- Keeping the head in an elevated position for a few days after surgery helps reduce the swelling.
- If tubes have been inserted to help drain the blood/fluid, these are normally removed 1 - 2 days after surgery.
- Stitches are generally removed 5 - 10 days after surgery.
- Most people are back to work 7 – 10 days after the surgery.
- Swelling and bruising normally remains for 2 - 3 weeks.
Your surgeon may well ask you to refrain from drinking alcohol and smoking both before and after surgery as it can contribute to poor blood circulation and fluid retention.
Like with all surgeries, recovery times differ from one patient to the next and closely following the surgeons post operation instructions will generally lead to a quicker recovery period.
The risks: Face lift:
- Haematoma (A collection of blood that can occur anywhere where bleeding occurs)
- Facial nerve damage.
- Scars may be present but are normally not visible.