If you’re planning to have a facelift, it can be somewhat overwhelming when you’re not sure what to expect before and after surgery. The following information will help to address some of those concerns.
What is a Facelift?
A facelift, or rhytidectomy, is a surgical procedure that is done to lift sagging skin on the face. It involves removing excess skin from the face and neck, and tightening loose skin around the jaw-line.
A facelift reduces visible signs of aging such as deep folds around the nose and mouth, sagging jowls, and excess skin and fat on the neck. During the facelift the surgeon will reposition the sagging facial skin and muscle, and remove excess skin from the face and neck.
What to Expect During Your Initial Consultation
During the initial consultation your plastic surgeon will discuss the procedure with you, and also listen to your aesthetic goals and expectations about the operation. The surgeon will conduct a physical examination and ask about your medical history. You should also let the surgeon know if you have any chronic conditions, or if you’ve had surgery in the past.
The initial consultation is the ideal opportunity to find out exactly what your options are, and ask all the questions you want. It’s always a good idea to take along a list of questions with you. Also, be sure to carefully consider your motivation for undergoing facelift surgery, and to make certain that you are doing it for the right reasons.
When selecting a surgeon, it’s important to choose a physician that you are comfortable with; so that you can openly discuss any issues or concerns you may have about the operation.
After you have talked through the details of facelift surgery with the plastic surgeon and decided to go ahead with the operation, what’s next?
How can you Prepare for Your Facelift?
Prior to surgery, your plastic surgeon will give you a list of instructions to help you prepare for your facelift.
Here is a list of things to do leading up to surgery:
Stop taking medications/supplements as directed
Your plastic surgeon will let you know which medications or supplements you need to stop taking before and after your facelift surgery. This is important since some medications can increase the risk of complications during surgery, or affect the recovery process.
If you smoke, your surgeon will ask you to stop prior to surgery. There is strong evidence that smoking can increase the chance of complications before and after surgery.
Do required pre-operative tests
Facelift patients are often asked to do specific lab tests prior to surgery. These should be done at least 3-4 weeks ahead of the scheduled surgery date, so that your plastic surgeon gets the results early enough.
Maintain a healthy lifestyle
If you haven’t been doing so before, it’s a good idea to start taking care of yourself before surgery. Exercising regularly, eating well-balanced meals, and taking care of your skin will make it easier to recover well after surgery, and keep your appearance rejuvenated for years to come.
Make post-operative arrangements
You need to make arrangements to have a family member or friend take you home following the facelift, and stay with you for at least the first 48 hours. After the operation you won’t be able to do any normal household tasks. You will need to rest for the first few days after surgery, so it’s necessary to have someone at home to help out. You may also need to take 1-2 weeks off of work, depending on the type of job you have.
If you wish to rejuvenate your appearance it is always important to seek the guidance of a board certified physician. The surgeon will be able to help you determine the best way to achieve your aesthetic goals safely.