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Considering a Facelift? Here's What You Need to Know Before Going Under the Knife

Today, those who are considering plastic surgery have more options than ever before. Naturally, this means those considering a facelift have more to learn and take into account before choosing a plastic surgery professional or technique. Before opting for cosmetic surgery, prospective patients should examine both the benefits and risks. Reputable plastic surgeons want their patients to be fully informed before making such a personal decision. Anyone considering a facelift or neck lift procedure should consult a primary care provider to ensure they are healthy enough to undergo the procedure and get a full consultation from an experienced, qualified plastic surgeon.

Is a facelift right for me?

Is a Facelift Right for You?

As with any elective cosmetic surgery, there are good reasons and not-so-good reasons to have it done. Botox, dermal fillers, or other energy-based devices such as fractionated lasers, Morpheus, Sylfirm, and Profound are excellent non-surgical treatments that can prevent and treat certain aging processes. However, facelifts and neck lifts are still the best options for individuals who have aging concerns that cannot be addressed with non-invasive measures.

Several types of surgical procedures are available, and patients should be aware of the benefits as well as the risks of each. These include a comprehensive facelift, a lower of mini facelift, and a cheek lift.

  • Traditional facelift: Traditional facelifts focus on using the skin and underlying tissues to “lift” the sagging skin. Results typically would not be as long-lasting or as natural

  • Deep plane facelift: Deep plane facelift is the most advanced technique that uses the deeper muscle and tissue layers to reposition the aging face into its more youthful position. Not all “deep plane” facelifts are alike, and different surgeons perform them differently. As a result, outcomes really depend on the surgeon and not the technique.

  • Neck lift: The neck needs always to be treated with facelifts; otherwise, the balance and harmony of the face will be unhinged. The neck is often the first area to have a negative impact on appearance and aging and occasionally needs to be treated on its own. Muscles, fat, and glands in the area often need to be modified to get a gorgeous neck. Advanced surgical technique with a super expert is required to avoid nerve damage and amazing outcomes.

  • Adjunctive Procedures: Since the aging process is multidimensional and caused by a variety of factors, facelifts, and neck lifts are commonly performed with other procedures to maximize outcomes and create the most attractive results. These include blepharoplasty, brow reshaping, fat grafting, lip lifts, buccal fat repositioning, and chin augmentation.

Each procedure type addresses different levels of apparent aging in different areas of the face.

What to expect after your facelift

Results: What You Can Expect

Surgical options described above, when performed by experts, will often last for years. The skill of the plastic surgeon and the health and nutrition practices of the patient can potentially make a facelift last even longer. With this in mind, the actions of the patient before surgery, during recovery, and long-term health habits will largely determine the quality of the results of a facelift over time.

Factors influencing the longevity of a facelift include the type of surgery performed, maintenance procedures (e.g., skin care, fillers, Botox, and merry devices, etc.), age, genetics, diet and fitness habits, sun exposure, and exposure to other risk factors. While no plastic surgeon can predict how long a facelift will last with certainty, he or she may be able to give a reasonable estimation after a complete patient consultation.

Self-Care and Recovery Times

After a facelift, you can expect to go through short-term and longer-term recovery phases. In the short term, the patient can expect to be able to resume normal activities anywhere between a few days to a few weeks. The length of this phase depends on the severity of signs of aging, skin health, and other factors. On average, most patients can expect to be able to return to their normal daily lives within two weeks.

During this time, patients will need to make follow-up appointments so that the plastic surgeon can monitor progress and recommend further care if needed. Getting plenty of rest, remaining well hydrated, being well nourished, and avoiding nicotine products and exposure to excessive sun are recommended.

Learn More About the Advantages of Modern Facelift Technology

If you are considering a facelift or other plastic surgical procedure, consult a board-certified facial plastic surgeon or plastic surgeon with expertise in facelifts. They will seek to protect your health and help you achieve lasting positive results.


Babak Azizzadeh, M.D., FACS is a Harvard-trained board-certified facial

plastic surgeon who serves as director of Beverly Hills' Center for Advanced Facial Plastic Surgery and board member of the American Academy of Facial Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery.

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