What to Expect When Recovering From Facelift Surgery


If you've been unhappy with the aging appearance of your face, a facelift procedure can certainly restore a more taut, youthful look. However, a lot of patients have concerns about recovering from a facelift procedure and what the recovery process entails. Learning a bit more about the recovery process will help you determine if this procedure is really right for you.

Do you have to stay in the hospital after your facelift?

This will depend on the extent of your surgery and your surgeon's preferences. Minor facelifts may be performed under local anesthesia, which means you'll actually be awake during the procedure. You'll also be given a sedative to keep you calm. In this case, you'll likely be able to return home a few hours after your procedure is complete. However, you'll need to have someone drive you home as the sedation may not completely wear off by then. More extensive facelifts are performed under general anesthesia -- you're completely put under. In this case, you'll often be asked to stay overnight in the hospital. This is not just to ensure you begin healing properly, but also to ensure you come out of the anesthesia safely.

What medications will be prescribed after the surgery?

In most circumstances, you'll just be given a prescription for a pain reliever. You'll likely be prescribed a narcotic such as oxycodone, unless you have had trouble with narcotics in the past. In that case, an NSAID like ibuprofen may be prescribed. If you are at an increased risk of infection for any reason, your doctor may have you take an oral antibiotic for a few days post-surgery.

How will your face be bandaged after your facelift?

You should be sent home with a bandage that covers your chin and forehead. This bandage will wrap under your chin for stability, preventing you from moving your facial muscles too much and causing yourself pain. Your doctor will likely request that you return to the office for a checkup a day or two after your surgery. At this point, your bandage will be changed to a lighter one that covers just the incisions. But, you'll also be given a special sling that slips over your head and chin to keep you from moving your face too much. Your doctor will tell you how long you need to wear this sling and how often to change the bandages.

Will you need to have stitches removed following the surgery?

Most surgeons now use dissolvable stitches, so you will not need to have them removed. However, there are exceptions to this rule. If you have thin or weak skin, or if you have a health condition that may impede healing, your surgeon may use removable stitches that need to be removed a week or two after the procedure, depending on how quickly you heal.

When will you be able to go out in public again without the facelift being obvious?

Experts recommend planning a facelift at least one month before any special event that you'd like to look your best for. However, most patients are able to return to work within two weeks, since much of the swelling will have gone down by this time. Your surgeon can recommend specific types of makeup that are safe to use over your incision marks while they are still sensitive. Keep in mind that these incisions are made as close to the hairline as possible, so you may be able to camouflage them with your hairstyle and not use as much makeup as you think.

Keep in mind that every person is different. The information in this article is meant as a guide, but your situation might be a bit different based on the extent of your procedure, your age, and any health conditions you may have. Talk to a surgeon, such as those at Newport Center for Special Surgery, for the most personalized information regarding your facelift recovery.


11 February 2016

Getting a Chemical Peel

Ever since I was a little kid, I’ve been a daddy’s girl. Now that my father is getting older, I’m starting to worry more about his health. Because he worked outdoors for decades, I was happy when my dad recently started to visit a dermatologist. This medical professional discovered that my dear dad had several skin cancers on his face. This individual removed my father’s skin cancers by burning and freezing them. He also recommended that my father undergo a chemical peel in order to prevent some of the cancers on his face from returning. On this blog, you will discover the health benefits of getting a chemical peel on your face. Enjoy!