Are you considering a facelift? This cosmetic surgery procedure has been around for more than a hundred years, and it has helped many people improve their facial appearance. While the reasons for getting surgery may vary, a facelift can ultimately help you feel confident about your looks. People age at different rates, so the right age varies. However, not all patients are candidates for this operation.
What is a Facelift?
A facelift also referred to as rhytidectomy, is a popular surgical procedure that aims to enhance your facial appearance by rejuvenating the neck and lower face area, both of which undergo natural changes due to aging.
Your procedure will depend on the work required, but it should involve any or all the following:
- Smoothing out wrinkles or folds
- Tightening and lifting facial tissues
- Removing excess skin
- Banding of the neck
The goal of a facelift is to enhance your facial aesthetic and create a more youthful appearance.
What is the Best Age to Get a Facelift?
People between their late 40s and early 60s most commonly opt for a facelift. Since signs of aging usually appear within this age bracket, a facelift is an excellent way to lessen the appearance of sagging skin, wrinkles, and fine lines. However, there is no actual age at which you are considered too old for this surgical procedure. As long as your plastic surgeon deems you are healthy enough to undergo a facelift procedure, then you are considered a good candidate.
What to Expect
To find out if you are qualified for a facelift, first schedule a consultation with a board-certified plastic surgeon in your area. Your surgeon will assess your:
- Concerns or reasons why you want to undergo this procedure
- Medical history
- Current medical conditions
This initial consultation will help you understand if this is the proper procedure for you and allow your surgeon to recommend alternatives if necessary.
Once the doctor determines that you are a good candidate for a facelift, he or she will walk you through the entire procedure and discuss the following:
- How to prepare
- Recovery phase
- Benefits and risks
- Costs and financing options
- Other treatment options
Your initial consultation is also the perfect time to ask any questions you may have. Once you have all the information you need and fully understand what the procedure entails, it is time to schedule your facelift surgery.
Preparing For Surgery
Weeks Before Your Appointment
The best way to prepare for your surgery is to take care of your health. To maximize the results of your surgery, then it is essential to follow your doctor’s guidelines. Before your appointment, you should:
- Stay hydrated
- Eat healthy
- Get proper sleep
- Not smoke cigarettes
Your doctor may also instruct you to stay away from any medications you are currently taking. However, if you are taking maintenance medication for chronic or long-term conditions, be sure to share this during the initial consultation. Doing so will help you avoid complications on the day of your facelift surgery and during your recovery.
Hours Before Your Appointment
To prepare for your surgery, make sure that you:
- Do not eat or drink 12 hours before surgery
- Are well-rested
- Have someone to accompany you, especially on your way back home
- Do not wear makeup
- Do not put on moisturizer
- Do not wear contact lenses
- Wear a button-down or zipped top (you should not wear it over your head)
- Wear loose bottoms
- Do not wear any accessories
After Your Surgery
- After a successful facelift procedure, you may notice more swelling and bruising in the days after surgery. This is normal, and your doctor will prescribe medications to help with any discomfort.
- When handling incisions and bandages, make sure to follow specific instructions given by your doctor. These must be kept dry at all times.
- Expect follow-up visits with your doctor to remove sutures and monitor your recovery.
- Stay away from any rigorous activities for at least two weeks, but make sure to walk around to increase blood flow and circulation in your entire body.
- You should see results immediately after surgery, but the final results will be apparent.
- If you feel or notice signs that you think are unusual, consult your doctor immediately.
How Long Will the Results Last?
A facelift should last about seven to ten years, but the effects can be long lasting with proper facial skin care.
You can slow down your skin’s overall aging process by:
- Having a well-balanced diet
- Exercising regularly
- Avoiding smoking
- Drinking alcoholic beverages in moderation
- Avoiding foods with too much sugar
- Not exposing yourself to sunlight for long hours
- Moisturizing twice a day
- Wearing sunscreen
With good skincare, the results of your facelift surgery can last up to 10 years.
What Age is Too Young for a Facelift?
For natural-looking results, facelifts must be done at an age where the skin shows signs of aging but still has some elasticity, around 40 to 50 years old. Your skin is still at its prime at age 30 and younger, and while this age range may not be ideal for a facelift, your doctor may recommend a mini facelift or other non-surgical options to address your needs. If you are over 70 years of age, your doctor may recommend a refresher facelift.
Find Out If a Facelift Is Right for You
Age does not determine if you are qualified for facelift surgery. Some people may have more signs of aging due to smoking, high levels of sun exposure, or genetic predispositions.
If you believe you are a candidate for this procedure, schedule a consultation with Dr. Rod, a board-certified plastic surgeon who specializes in cosmetic surgery of the face, breast, and body in Phoenix, AZ. Call us at (623) 535-7050.