Your face goes through many complex changes as you get older. Fat deposits increase in some areas and decrease in others. Skin becomes looser and starts to sag. These changes are normal, but they can change your appearance and negatively affect the way you feel about yourself.
Face lift surgery is one of many cosmetic procedures that we offer at Summit OMS to restore your youthful appearance. It is more invasive than facial fillers or BOTOX® injections, but the results are more permanent.
Perhaps you have been thinking to yourself, “I believe that I could benefit from finding a facelift surgeon near me,” but you still have questions about the procedure itself. In our opinion, you should have as much information as possible before making your decision. Therefore, we have created this web page to attempt to answer some of the most important questions you may have.
What Is Face Lift Surgery?
Face lift surgery is also known as rhytidectomy, a medical term that derives from ancient Greek and literally means “removal of wrinkles.” This is achieved by incising the skin, removing any excess as necessary, and altering the tissues underneath before closing the skin flap again with sutures.
What Is the Objective?
Every patient is different, and what you hope to achieve from your face lift depends on your individual situation. Generally speaking, the intended outcomes of a facelift can include:
- Reducing the appearance of “jowls” by removing loose skin around the jaw
- Restoring youthful contours by redistributing or sculpting facial fat
- Decreasing the appearance of the deep fold lines in the skin between the corner of your mouth and your nose
Before you decide to have a face lift, you should be aware that it is not effective for some signs of aging, such as skin color irregularities, superficial wrinkles, or sun damage. We are happy to discuss your goals with you and determine whether a face lift would be a reasonable treatment option or another treatment would more effectively provide the results you desire.
What Is Involved in the Procedure?
A face lift involves incising the skin on either side of your face near your ear. Each of these incisions forms a skin flap that is pulled back so that our surgeon can access the tissues underneath. A traditional incision starts at your temple, extends down in front of the ear, which it then curves around to the lower scalp.
Another face lift option is a limited incision. This variation is performed not to treat severe sagging of the face but to prevent it from occurring in the first place. The limited incision is shorter than that for the traditional face lift. Instead of starting at your temples, a limited incision starts just above your ear and, while still wrapping around the ear, does not extend into the lower scalp.
A face lift alone may not be enough to yield all the improvement you want. Like many other patients, you may choose to have additional surgeries performed at the same time as your face lift:
- Platysmaplasty: Reduces sagging skin and fat deposits in the neck
- Blepharoplasty: Removes excess folds, bags, or pouches around the eyes
- Brow Lift: Raises sagging brows and improves vertical lines between the eyebrows and horizontal lines across the forehead
Face lift surgery, whether including the other procedures or not, can be performed under general anesthesia, which renders you completely unconscious, or local anesthesia with sedation. Local anesthesia numbs a specific part of your body, while sedation makes you feel relaxed without making you lose consciousness completely.
What Are the Risks Associated With the Procedure?
Like all other invasive procedures, there are risks involved with face lift surgery. In addition to the general risks of anesthesia reactions, postoperative infection, and bleeding, there are also more specific adverse effects that can occur with a face lift.
Most patients find that the natural contours of the face in the area of the incision hide the scars from casual observers. However, the scars may also take on a red color and become raised. It may be possible to improve scars’ appearance with corticosteroid injections.
The most common complication of face lift surgery is swelling and pressure in the face from a collection of blood called a hematoma. Left untreated, a hematoma can cause permanent damage to skin and other tissues. Treatment involves urgent surgery to remove the collected blood.
3. Hair or Skin Loss
Incision to the hairline and stress to the follicles can cause hair loss following a face lift. This may be either temporary or permanent. If permanent, it may be correctable with surgery to transplant hair follicles.
A rarer but more dangerous complication is skin sloughing due to necrosis, or tissue death, caused by an interrupted blood supply. Once necrosis takes place, it is impossible to reverse, but wound care and medications may be able to prevent it from spreading. Necrosis and skin sloughing are more likely in patients who use tobacco, which reduces circulation.
4. Nerve Injury
Injury to the nerves of the face during rhytidectomy can cause paralysis of the affected muscle group. Depending on the extent of the injury, this can be either temporary or permanent. In either case, it can cause your facial expression to become uneven.
Though rare, long-term or permanent complications from a face lift can change your appearance significantly.
What Can You Expect From the Procedure?
When you have a face lift procedure performed at Summit OMS, we will give you instructions to prepare for the procedure beforehand and recover from it afterward. Following these instructions closely reduces your risk of complications from the surgery.
We may ask you to stop taking certain medications for at least two weeks prior to surgery and ask you not to eat anything after midnight the night before. To prevent postoperative infection, we may ask you to use a germicidal soap to wash your face and hair that morning. We perform face lifts as an outpatient procedure, and it is not safe to drive yourself home while recovering from the anesthesia. Therefore, we ask that you make arrangements prior to surgery for someone else to drive you home and stay with you overnight.
Following your surgery, you may experience bruising, swelling, numbness, and drainage from the incision, as well as mild-to-moderate pain. We will recommend medication you can take to ease the pain and advise you on reducing pain and swelling with the use of cold packs. You should spend most of the first few days after surgery resting with your head elevated.
The recovery period after a face lift can take several weeks. During that time, you should follow the wound care instructions we provide and avoid the following:
- Treating your hair (e.g., perming or coloring it)
- Participating in vigorous sports or aerobic activities
- Wearing makeup
- Putting excess pressure on the incisions
- Picking at scabs
- Wearing clothing that you have to pull over your head.
During the recovery period, especially during the first 24 hours postoperative, you should watch for cardiopulmonary symptoms, such as irregular heartbeats or shortness of breath, or severe pain on one side of your face or neck. Additionally, you should be alert for signs of infection, such as fever, redness, or abnormal drainage at the surgical site. If you experience any of these signs, contact us right away.
Facelift Surgeon Near Me
So if you have been asking yourself, “Where can I find a facelift surgeon near me?” Contact us at Summit OMS for an evaluation and individualized recommendations.