You can grow old gracefully, but that doesn’t mean you have to live with signs of aging you’re unhappy with. If you see the toll time has taken on your face looking back at you in the mirror, there are solutions for you. Call The Mack Center Cosmetic Center in Tampa, FL and request a consultation with Dr. William Mack to discuss how a facelift could be the solution you’ve been looking for.
What Is a Facelift?
A facelift is a cosmetic surgery that can help improve the physical signs of aging. It is the standard to which most anti-aging treatments and procedures are held. With this procedure, your surgeon will work to lift and tighten the facial tissues and areas of skin that fall and sag as we age.
When facelifts were in their infancy, they were not much more than pulling and removing excess skin. The facelifts of today can be transformative as surgeons can reposition the facial muscles and fat.
Each procedure is different and dependent on the current state of your skin and the results you want. Most people want natural results, which will mean the skin of your face won’t be pulled to its tightest position (which would give you an unnatural, taut appearance).
What Does It Treat?
This procedure addresses the lower portion of the face, from the upper cheeks down. The main goal of this procedure is typically to tighten sagging and loose skin around the jawline and chin while smoothing out creases. Excess skin can be removed and the underlying tissues of the face tightened.
Jowls will be addressed by removing excess skin from that area of the face, and the tissues will be altered to restore a more youthful contour and shape. The sagging appearance of the cheeks will be lessened and an overall tightening of the lower face will occur. People choose this procedure to address:
- Overall lower face drooping and sagging
- Deepening of the nasolabial fold that runs from the nose to the mouth
- Excess skin on the lower jawline
How Are Facelifts Performed?
This is typically an outpatient surgery, although each patient is different and may have different needs and aftercare requirements. Keep in mind that facelifts target the lower portion of the face, so small incisions are made above or near the ears with the changes to the face being made from the upper cheeks down. During the procedure, fat and skin may be repositioned or removed to achieve the ultimate desired result. Underlying connective tissue and muscles are tightened and redistributed.
To close the procedure out, dissolvable sutures or skin glue will be used at the incision site. Whenever there is an incision, there will be a scar, but these will be placed strategically to blend with your hairline and facial structure so they are nearly undetectable.
What to Expect
Because this is a medical procedure, the consultation phase of the process is vitally important. During this meeting, your doctor will review your current health and health history and order any pre-operative tests required, like a chest x-ray and lab work. The most important health aspects to review to determine candidacy are:
- Current health conditions
- Alcohol and drug use
- Current medications and supplements
- Previous surgical history
- Any drug allergies
This is also when you and your doctor will discuss realistic expectations. It’s important to know that while this procedure is transformative, it is not literally a rewinding of time. A 60-year-old man or woman will not look 20 again. The goal is to look like a refreshed, rejuvenated and lifted version of yourself. Your appearance will absolutely lose years: it’s just important your doctor give you realistic expectations.
Because this can be done as outpatient surgery, you won’t have to undergo a pre-procedure medical stay. You’ll be asked to stop taking any blood-thinning medication, both prescription and over the counter, a week or two before as long as it this won’t interfere with the treatment of other medical conditions. These medications include:
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like aspirin and ibuprofen
- Herbal supplements like fish oil, garlic, vitamins E and C, and ginseng
You must arrange for someone to drive you both to and from the office or medical center. You’ll be given anesthesia, so you won’t be cleared to drive yourself home. You will also need to stop eating and drinking at a specified time as directed by your doctor or anesthesiologist. You should plan on wearing loose, comfortable clothing to change into once you’re ready to go home, including a button-up top so you don’t have to pull anything over your face.
Day of Procedure
Once you arrive, you’ll change into a gown and go over any questions or concerns you have with both your surgeon and the person administering your anesthesia. They will give you post-operative instructions so you can clarify anything listed before you are sedated. They will also go over any instructions with the person who will be providing you with aftercare or staying with you while you recover.
You’ll go into surgery, which could last a few hours. Once in recovery, patients report feeling very little, if any, pain. Your doctor will meet with you to go over physical aftercare, discuss how the procedure went and arrange a follow-up visit.
You must rest as your body heals and recovers. You’ll change and remove dressings as instructed and can return to your normal eating habits, but it’s important to drink plenty of water and eat nutritious food to help with a speedy recovery.
In about two weeks, you’ll be able to resume all normal activities except for strenuous exercise. You should wait about a month to get back into your normal exercise routine (or until cleared by your doctor). Light walking is beneficial right away.
Results from this procedure are life-changing and transformative. Once your post-operative swelling goes down after a few days, you’ll begin to notice a younger complexion. Once you are completely healed, you’ll notice:
- Restoration of the prominence of your cheeks and cheekbones
- Removal of jowling
- A more contoured jawline
- A softening of the nasolabial folds
- An improvement in your neck area
You’ll get a lot of compliments but probably won’t be asked if you’ve had work done because the results will be so natural. Those closest to you will know but will only be impressed! After a few months, all the swelling will be gone and you will be left with a brighter, well-rested, rejuvenated and younger-looking appearance.
Facelifts, unfortunately, don’t stop the aging process, so you’ll want to take great care of your new-found look. Applying sunscreen every day is the single greatest favor you can do your new complexion. You should also talk to your doctor about a skincare routine that will best preserve your results.
The typical procedure will give you great results for about ten years. Beyond that, the aging process will restart its clock; but you’ll always have this new starting point. If you feel the procedure took ten years off your appearance at age 60, you’ll start the aging process from your new perceived 50.
What This Procedure Doesn’t Treat
If you have very thin skin on your face that has become crepey with a lot of fine lines, a facelift won’t treat those. There’s no need to despair, however. There are plenty of cosmetic treatments that can help with this issue.
This treatment also won’t address hooded eyelids or drooping eyebrows. If you have severe skin laxity on your neck and extra fat, standard facelifts won’t completely treat that condition.
Patients who want a complete transformation will often get more than one procedure done at the same time, and surgeons will encourage this so you’re only having one surgery to address multiple issues.
A Neck Lift
A neck lift uses liposuction and excess skin removal to address severe skin laxity and excess fat on the neck. Our necks can betray our age as quickly as anything, particularly if we have very thin skin or have lost a significant amount of weight. This procedure can address:
- Loose neck skin
- Fatty deposits under the chin
- Abnormal contours created by muscle banding
- Skin relaxation that creates severe jowls
Upper and Lower Eyelid Blepharoplasty
If aging has caused your upper eyelids to droop, they can develop a hooded look and even impede your vision. This can give your whole face a downward and tired appearance. Upper lid blepharoplasty can remove excess skin and lift a patient’s entire aesthetic. The result is a happier, well-rested and positive appearance.
Lower lid blepharoplasty addresses the pockets of fat and excess skin under the eyes that lead to “bags”. Bags under the eyes give the appearance of exhaustion, stress and illness. This procedure removes and/or repositions excess fat, removes excess skin and can restore volume to hollows under the eyes. The result is a well-rested, healthy and more youthful complexion.
Age will cause our facial muscles and skin to lose their tone and strength. Excess skin, pushed by gravity, will fall, crowding our eyebrows and causing them to be too heavy for our weakened face to hold up. A lifetime of making facial expressions can lead to permanent frown lines between the eyebrows which give us the appearance of being angry or upset even when we’re not. Your forehead can also become etched with deep wrinkles, adding to an aged look.
A brow lift relieves those deep forehead, brow and eyelid furrows, removing the worried or angry look that can come from a heavy upper face. The results are natural and include:
- Reduced forehead lines
- A natural raising of the eyebrows
- Reduced eyelid hooding
- Removed heaviness from the eye area
- Reduced frown lines
Other Cosmetic Treatments
Once you’ve addressed the foundational issues of your appearance with your surgeon, you may want to supplement your results with a few cosmetic treatments. The addition of certain treatments can address issues not resolved by surgery like:
- Crepey skin on the face and fine lines
- Skin discoloration from age or the sun
- Large pores
- Unwanted facial hair
- Broken capillaries
Discuss topical imperfections with your doctor to get the best recommendations to address all your aesthetic needs. There are a variety of treatments that can address superficial skin issues and provide astounding and lasting results.
Schedule a Consultation
The first step to a new you is to make an appointment with a qualified and experienced surgeon. Call the Mack Cosmetic Center in Tampa, FL to schedule a consultation with Dr. William Mack. We understand the decision to have surgery can be intimidating, so we are dedicated to walking you through every step of the process. We believe the right procedure and treatments can transform lives.