What you do before and after surgery is just as important as the surgery itself. Dr. Gupta at Verve Plastic Surgery will provide you with detailed instructions on how to care for your incisions, medications for pain and to prevent infection, how to control swelling, what to watch out for, and when to contact him if you are having a problem or just have a question.
Importantly, every facelift is customized to each individual patient’s needs and goals. The information provided here is for general guidance.
It is essential that you follow Dr. Gupta’s specific instructions to help you achieve successful healing, and ensure a great result. Do not smoke or use any form of nicotine for a least a month after surgery as nicotine constricts blood vessels and inhibits healing which can compromise your results.
Recovery from a Mini-facelift
Dr. Gupta usually performs mini-facelifts in his office with local anesthetic and sedation. This eliminates the need for general anesthesia and the attendant risks. This type of lift is valuable for patients with mild to moderate signs of aging including jowls, and as a secondary facelift.
Some call this a lunchtime lift, however it is still surgery. And while it is called a mini lift, the results are not! Recovery is fairly quick, 7-14 days. You will be up and around within a day or two.
While it is limited to the mid and lower face and has a short scar, Dr. Gupta will tighten the underlying muscles, and remove excess skin and fat, so you can expect to feel sore, tight and numb. You will be fatigued. Healing takes a lot of energy, so take this time to rest and allow your body to heal.
Your face will be swollen and discolored, and you will be uncomfortable. Discomfort is treated with pain medication. The area around the incisions may feel tender. To reduce swelling and bruising, we advise that you use ice packs to reduce swelling and discomfort, and to sleep with your head elevated. Your skin will feel tight, even though you won’t look stretched.
You can expect to take off about a week after surgery, and activities will be restricted for about two weeks. Most patients go back to work within two to three weeks. By two weeks the majority of swelling and bruising will have resolved. Special makeup can be used to camouflage your incisions, if needed. It is especially important that you wear sun screen whenever you go out.
Aging does not stop, but it is important that you avoid direct sun exposure on your incisions to prevent darkening of the scars. It takes up to six months to see the final results of your facelift.
Recovery from a Full Facelift
A full lift is much more extensive surgery, and will require a longer period of recovery. It is also done under general anesthesia.
The first 24 hours you will sleep a lot. At 3-4 days, swelling and bruising with be at their worst. By the end of two weeks, most patients feel well enough to go out in public, and return to a gentle routine.
By week three, you can expect that the majority visible bruising and swelling will have resolved. By one month you can resume your normal schedule of exercise.
But it important to realize that it can take a full year for your scars to fade completely, and to see your final results. How long it may take you to recover is determined by your health, age and the complexity and number of procedures you have. Whether you have a mini or full facelift, if you also have another or several additional surgical procedures like a blepharoplasty, eye lid life, forehead lift or neck lift, your recovery may take more time.
Your rejuvenated face will reflect your youthful spirit and energy, and you will appear more rested and refreshed. You will experience improved confidence and self-esteem, and look ten years younger. Your facelift results can last for 10-15 years. Contact Verve Plastic Surgery in Solana Beach, CA to learn how you can achieve natural-looking and long-lasting rejuvenation.