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Facelift (Rhytidectomy)

As we get older, sun exposure, weight fluctuation, and the natural aging process can cause our skin to loosen and sag while we develop wrinkles or jowls. This loose skin, in addition to excessive fatty deposits, can make even a person of normal weight appear to have a double chin. The muscles on the neck may droop, too, making a person look years older than he/she truly is.

Known as “rhytidectomy,” a facelift is a surgical procedure that can improve visible signs of aging by creating a more youthful and refreshing appearance in the face and neck by improving the skin around the jawline, cheeks, and nasolabial folds. This facial rejuvenation procedure is often done in conjunction with a brown lift and/or eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty).

The first step in facelift surgery involves making incisions at the temples and along the hairline. Then, the skin is lifted and separated from the muscle. Dr. Loessin tightens or removes excess skin and re-sculpts the muscle tissue. To complete the facelift, the remaining skin is then smoothed, tightened, and secured with sutures. At this point, Dr. Loessin dresses the area with soft bandages.

A facelift usually takes between one to three hours, depending on the condition of your skin and the results you would like to achieve. During recovery, you may experience some common side effects such as swelling, bruising, and numbness. Any minor discomfort is usually remedied with an over-the-counter or prescription pain medication.

The facelift is a surgical procedure that can achieve a more apparent result than a non-surgical procedure. The benefit of non-surgical treatments is that they can delay the time at which a facelift becomes adequate, but neither of them can stop the aging process.

Like any other procedure the risks of having a facelift are lessened if you are physically healthy and a non-smoker. It is crucial that you have a positive outlook and specific, but realistic, goals in mind for the improvement of your appearance.

Facelift- Frequently Asked Questions

Other facial cosmetic surgery procedures, such as brow lift surgery and/or eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty), are often performed in conjunction with a facelift.

Typically, a facelift can be completed in less than three hours. However, the length of time will depend on the individual, the amount of work that needs to be done, and whether any other procedure will be performed in conjunction with the facelift.

Following a facelift, bandages will be applied to the head and neck to maintain the area and keep it stationary. These bandages will provide gentle pressure to minimize swelling and bruising. In addition, a small tube may be placed under the skin behind one or both of your ears to drain any excess blood or fluid. The bandages are usually removed a day after the procedure.

Many patients are surprised by the lack of pain there is after facelift surgery. For several weeks, patients can expect some swelling around the eyes; however, as the swelling goes away, you’ll begin to see the surgery’s progress. Precautionary measures will be necessary during your recovery. Bending or lifting can extend swelling and should be avoided for three weeks after surgery. In addition, running, cycling, and other exercises should also be avoided for three weeks. Driving is permissible when the swelling goes down and it does not get in the way of your vision. After ten days, you may fly.

Although facelifts cannot stop the aging process, the person who has facelift surgery will always appear more youthful than they would if they had not had the surgery, even years later.

To learn more about the facelift procedure and to see if this is right for you, schedule your consultation with board certified plastic surgeon Dr. Scott Loessin. Our Key West, Florida plastic surgery office serves residents of all of the Keys Islands and surrounding communities. Call us today at 305-809-8011.