Over time, your body becomes less effective at turning over cells and generating new collagen. Without a healthy, supportive collagen matrix, the natural aging process can cause the skin around your neck and jaw to sag, producing deep folds around the nose and mouth.

If you’re looking to reverse symptoms of aging like these, unfortunately, skincare products or fillers may not always be enough to produce the anti-aging results you’re hoping for. In this case, a board-certified plastic surgeon like Dr. Lisa DiFrancesco can create a personalized and significantly transformative surgical plan for you.

What is a Facelift?

A facelift, otherwise known as a rhytidectomy, is a surgical procedure that can improve your cheek, jawline, and neck contours by repositioning and reshaping loose skin, removing excess fat, and repositioning facial muscles. When performed by a double board-certified plastic surgeon like Dr. DiFrancesco, a facelift is a highly effective way to erase fine lines and wrinkles and correct and tighten sagging skin in many areas of the face.

During facelift surgery, incisions are made around the hairline so the underlying tissues can be manipulated and reshaped. This results in a rejuvenated, energized look, taking as much as a decade off your appearance. With a facelift, you can enjoy a long-lasting, younger, and more rested version of yourself.

WHAT RESULTS CAN A FACELIFT ACHIEVE?

On their own, facelift procedures provide a significant reduction of wrinkles and fine lines in the middle and lower face. For additional results around the eyes or neck, procedures like a brow lift and neck lift are commonly performed at the same time as a facelift. Dr. DiFrancesco may recommend any or all of these procedures during your consultation.

Facelift results are always long-lasting, and based on surveys of patients who undergo these procedures, can turn back the clock of their appearance by as much as 20 years.

WHAT A FACELIFT SURGERY CANNOT DO

Facelifts cannot stop the natural course of aging and its effects on facial skin. Over time, even after highly successful cosmetic surgery, the skin will lose elasticity, and wrinkles may form throughout the face. However, with a good skincare regimen, Atlanta facelift patients can extend the life of their results by protecting their skin from harmful UV rays and using good-quality cleansers and moisturizers to keep skin tone even.

Good Candidates for Facelift

Good candidates for an Atlanta facelift procedure are people who have signs of aging throughout the midface. It’s especially effective on people who haven’t responded well to fillers or non-surgical treatments for the common signs of aging on the face and neck.

In general, many eligible patients opt for a facelift in their 50s or 60s, although there is no ideal age at which to have a facelift. Good candidates for facelift surgery should be generally healthy and have realistic expectations about what a facelift can achieve. And as is the case with all invasive medical procedures, candidates for a facelift should be non-smokers and have no contraindications for surgery.

To find out if you’re a good candidate for facelift surgery or any other plastic surgery procedure, schedule a consultation with Dr. DiFrancesco at DiFrancesco Plastic Surgery. During your consultation, you can discuss your concerns and desired results, as well as the whole range of surgical and non-surgical options for treatment.

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Kind words from our patients

Dr. D. and her staff are the utmost professionals. From my initial consultation to surgery and post-op, I could not be more pleased. The results were more than I could have ever hoped for. I feel pretty for the first time in my life and I have Dr. D. to thank for this. Would highly recommend her.

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Types of Facelift

There are two main types of facelifts available, and you may benefit from one more than the other. Dr. DiFrancesco will discuss all the options available for your desired results during your facelift consultation.

Traditional Facelift

During a traditional facelift, incisions are placed within the hairline at the temples and continue around the ear into the nape of the neck. This allows the most access to the underlying tissues, which are repositioned or reapportioned to achieve the desired results. Excess skin can be removed during this procedure, reducing or eliminating the appearance of wrinkles. When additional skin or tissue needs to be removed from below the chin, an additional incision is made to lift and tighten the appearance of the jawline and neck.

Limited Incision Facelift

Also called a short-scar facelift or a mini facelift procedure, this type of facial surgery is best suited for minimal aging correction and requires a much smaller incision than a traditional facelift. It also comes with a shorter downtime.

However, a limited incision facelift surgery can only effectively address issues in the lower part of the face and does not provide as significant results as a traditional facelift can.

Facelift Procedure

The facelift is performed under general anesthesia and can often be paired with a neck lift or brow lift. A facelift is an outpatient procedure that can only be performed by a board-certified plastic surgeon like Dr. DiFrancesco.

Once the treatment area has been prepared, an incision is made so that it will be easily concealable within the hairline. Then, Dr. DiFrancesco will perform the surgery to rejuvenate internal facial tissues and skin before closing the incisions with sutures. The procedure itself can take between two to four hours. After a brief monitoring period, you can return home with the help of a friend or family member.

Facelift Recovery & Results

Depending on the type of facelift surgery you receive, you can expect to need between one to two weeks away from work and social engagements to recover. During this time, it’s common to experience swelling and bruising. Any discomfort can be managed with over-the-counter pain medication or prescriptions, depending on Dr. DiFrancesco’s orders.

Be sure to follow Dr. DiFrancesco’s post-operative instructions, which may include keeping your head elevated while sleeping and avoiding exercise for a few weeks. In addition, you may be instructed to use cold packs to reduce swelling and bruising, as well as other recommendations for when you return to light activity after a few days. Overall, it can take around six weeks to fully recover, and your final results will continue to emerge in the months following your facelift surgery.

Most patients find long-term results with a facelift, although the effects are not permanent. While it is a highly effective procedure for reducing the apparent signs of aging and achieving a more youthful appearance, facelift surgery cannot reverse the natural aging process altogether.

Schedule a Consultation

A facelift is one of the premier ways to achieve your anti-aging goals with the help of a plastic surgeon. To meet with Dr. DiFrancesco, who is double board-certified in general and plastic surgery, and begin discussing your options for complete facial rejuvenation, contact our Atlanta office today by calling (404) 531-2478 or filling out our online form.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I prepare for a facelift?

You will be given your pre-operative instructions at your pre-op visit. However, good diet and exercise while stopping all herbal medications is recommended.

How many times can you get a facelift?

There is no limit to the number of facelifts you may get.

How many years younger can a facelift make you look?

Many patients marvel at their facelift results, exclaiming they look like old photos of themselves from a decade ago or more.

Do you need fillers after a facelift?

We will often use fat grafting to the face during a facelift to add volume. This is a permanent solution and may prevent the need for fillers after surgery.

How long will my face feel tight after a facelift?

Within the first two months of recovery, you will feel tightness in your face. As the swelling subsides, you will feel more comfortable and begin to notice your face's natural contour.

What are the deciding factors on which facelift procedure to choose (traditional versus limited incision)?

The length of your facelift incision can depend on a number of factors. Longer incisions are usually needed to address more advanced facial aging and patients with a lot of loose skin.

How long should you ice your face after a facelift?

Most patient keep their head elevated and use gentle ice packs for 48- 72 hours after surgery.

How many hours does the procedure take?

A patient can expect their facelift surgery to take between 4-6 hours. Many patients also add additional facial procedures such as a browlift or upper and lower eyelid surgery. Combining procedures will lengthen surgical time.

What is the best age to get a facelift?

The majority of facelift candidates are over 40 years of age. Many have used non-surgical facial rejuvenation methods to delay the aging process until skin laxity is severe enough to undergo surgery.

What should you not do after a facelift?

During the initial recovery process after your facelift surgery, refrain from any activities that increase your blood pressure such as exercise and bending over. However, activities and movements such a slow upright stretching and walking are encouraged. Always refer to your post-operative instructions and call the office with any questions.