There’s no getting around the fact that our faces change as we age. Face and neck tissues relax or shift, skin becomes looser, and facial lines grow more pronounced. But if the changes in your own face and neck are making you feel self-conscious, there is something you can do about it.
Facelift surgery—officially known as rhytidectomy—can smooth wrinkles, restore definition to facial contours, and remove jowls or a double chin brought on by sagging tissues. The result is often a revitalized sense of self along with a more youthful appearance.
Are You a Candidate for Facelift?
If you are bothered by facial changes that are making you appear older than you’d like–or find yourself wanting to keep your neck covered up because of the way it looks—you may wish to consider facelift surgery. We all want to put our best face forward, but each individual’s concerns and goals are highly personal, and Dr. Swenson can help you decide if a facelift is a good option for you. Those whose skin still retains some elasticity will experience the best results.
What to Expect
Facelift surgery reverses some of the signs of aging by literally “lifting” the facial contours. Small incisions made along the hairline at the side of the face allow the surgeon to reshape the underlying tissues and tighten the muscles of the face and neck. An incision may also be made under the chin to address the neck area. The surface is smoothed as the skin is lifted back over newly taut muscles and the excess skin and fat are removed; the jawline regains its younger, firmer profile.
Facelift surgery can take from two to four hours, depending on whether it is being done in combination with any other procedures, such as a brow lift or liposuction. Dr. Swenson performs facelift surgery on an outpatient basis under general anesthesia.
The dressing applied after surgery will remain in place for the first day. Swelling and bruising are normal following facelift surgery; to minimize them, you’ll be advised to sleep with your head raised. You should plan on two to three weeks of recovery time before returning to work. Your scars—hidden by your hair and natural facial lines—will fade over time. Prolonged sun exposure should be avoided for at least six weeks; being vigilant about sun protection will help extend the results of your facelift.
Insurance plans won’t cover most facelift surgery, though if it is being performed to correct genetic or injury-caused facial deformities it may be covered; check with your insurance carrier.