What to think about when you want a facelift
Botox and injectable fillers are soaring in popularity, but the facelift, with its long-lasting results, is holding its own. According to statistics published by the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), in 2012, 119,006 facelifts were performed compared with 116,066 facelifts in 20ll, representing a 2.5 percent increase.
If you're considering a facelift, there's a lot to think about. Dr. Michael Yaremchuk, plastic surgeon and Chief of Craniofacial Surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital provides some answers in his blog for the Huffington Post.
- Am I a good candidate for a facelift? There is no set age or profile. Your plastic surgeon will advise you, considering your age, skin type and goals.
- What kind of facelift should I get? It is more important to find the right surgeon than to decide on the right surgical technique. If you like a surgeon's facelift results, regardless of technique, you are on the road to obtaining the results you want.
- How long does the surgery take, and what is the recovery time? It depends on the extent of the procedure. A mini-facelift takes under two hours. Standard facelifts usually take three to four hours and may take up to six when combined with eyelid or brow surgery. Recovery times differ but, generally, noticeable swelling goes down in 10 to 14 days.
- In what way will I look different? A good facelift should make you look younger, as if you had rest and relaxation.
- What should I look for in a plastic surgeon? Look carefully at patient examples on the surgeon's website and ask for additional photos. You want to be confident that you and your surgeon are on the same page. Make sure your surgeon is certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS).
- What are the risks? Like any surgery, facelift procedures carry risks. Infection is possible but rare. Postoperative bleeding may result in hematomas. Healing is usually uneventful unless you are a smoker, and nerve damage is usually temporary. The incidence of these risks relates closely to your surgeon's skills, but there is some risk even in the best surgeon's operating room.
- You want to lose a few pounds and wonder if you should wait to have your facelift. If it is just a few pounds it will not make that much of a difference. If it is more, wait until you feel comfortable and healthy with your weight.
- How long will the effects of a facelift last compared with fillers? Fillers add temporary volume to deflated tissues. Facelift results will last for years, though longevity depends on skin quality, significant weight changes and environmental factors such as excessive sun exposure. The aging face can usually benefit from both treatments.
- Should I undergo other procedures together with my facelift? The most common procedure done with facelifts is eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty). These procedures are performed together more often than not.