While we are living longer and longer, our facial skin has trouble keeping up. The combination of sun damage, declining collagen production, and the fact that the face has some of the thinnest skin on the entire body takes a toll on our faces. All of this shows itself in deep creases beside the mouth, hanging jowls, sunken cheeks, loose skin and fat deposits on the neck, and an overall loose, saggy look.
A facelift with Dr. D’Amico can reverse this march of time, at least for a while. A facelift removes loose skin on your face and neck, tightens and repositions the underlying support tissue, and removes excess fat. Facelifts can take 10 to 15 years off your face and are excellent procedures for both women and men.
What is a Facelift?
A facelift is one of the most common procedures to reposition tissues and give the face a naturally rejuvenated appearance. The goal of facial rejuvenation is primarily restoration. With aging, two basic things happen: the first is that the connective tissue attachments between the soft tissues and the facial skeletal bones stretch out, causing the skin and tissues to move out of position, creating heavy nasolabial folds, jowls and the turkey bands in the neck. The other aging change is a loss of actual tissue volume (collagen and fat). Women and men visit Dr. Richard D’Amico in Englewood for face lift surgery because he provides exceptional results that make them look years younger, yet natural*.
Ideal Candidates for Facelift Surgery
Most anyone over the age of 45 could benefit from a facelift of some sort. How involved a procedure you seek will likely depend on how much time you’ve spent in the sun, environmental issues, personal habits, stresses, and the like. Generally, a facelift, clinically known as rhytidectomy, rejuvenates the mid-to-lower face and neck. If you can relate to these characteristics on your face, a facelift could be a good option:
- You have mid-face sagging
- You have deep creases under your eyes
- Your have deep nasolabial folds
- Jowls have formed on your jawline
- You have fatty, sagging areas just below your cheekbones
- You have loose skin, wrinkles, vertical cords, and fatty tissue on your neck
Why Choose Dr. D’Amico for Facelift Surgery
As an international authority on plastic surgery, Dr. D’Amico offers improvements over traditional approaches including*:
- Full results with shorter recovery
- More natural looking and lasting outcomes
- Smaller incisions with less tissue trauma
- Creative use and combination with less invasive technologies
Different Types of Facelift Procedures
Formerly, most patients simply opted to have what would now be known as a traditional facelift. More attention was paid to pulling and trimming skin rather the addressing the support tissues and muscles. But experienced doctors such as Dr. D’Amico now offer various options, with different incision lengths and locations, depending on the patient’s individual needs. The goal is to rejuvenate the face, but to do so in a way that leaves the patient with a naturally younger look. No one wants to look like they’ve “had something done.”
Dr. D’Amico repositions the muscle, connective tissues, fat, and the skin. On the face, this includes the SMAS, the superficial muscular aponeurotic system, which is a relatively thin layer of strong facial supporting tissue that covers and surrounds the deeper tissues and structures of the face and the neck. On the neck, this includes the platysma muscle.
Here are some basic techniques used for different facelift options. As mentioned above, Dr. D’Amico customizes every facelift to the unique needs of each individual patient. Most facelift procedures take around two hours.
This is the “full” facelift for rejuvenating the face, jowls, and neck. A full facelift involves lifting and repositioning the muscles and deeper tissues and removing certain attachments. Fat is sculpted (Dr. D’Amico avoids removing too much fat to avoid creating a “hollow” look). Excess skin is trimmed and then re-draped. The incisions with a traditional lift start at the temples, run downward in front of the ear, wrap around the earlobe, and terminate in the hairline of the lower scalp. If the patient has particular issues in the neck area, a second incision is made under the chin to lift, tighten, and trim excess skin on the upper neck.
The goals of this facelift aren’t as widespread, instead providing limited rejuvenation around the eyes and mouth, including nasolabial folds and other deep creases. Shorter incisions are made at the temples, around the ears, and if needed, in the lower eyelids and/or under the upper lip.
As the name implies, this lift focuses on the mid-face, lifting the cheeks and removing lines. Mid-face lifts can reduce puffiness under the eyes, correct nasolabial folds, and improve the cheeks. Incisions are small, usually in the lower eyelids or mouth.
While not technically a “facelift,” neck lifts are often combined with other lifts. The neck lift concentrates on jowls and fat under the chin. The incision is made around the earlobe and behind the ear to the lower scalp. An incision can also be made under the chin.
Can Facelift Surgery be Combined With Other Procedures?
Because of the name, patients sometimes believe a facelift addresses the entire face. It does not. Facelifts target the mid-face, lower face, and the upper neck. For full facial rejuvenation, patients often combine a facelift with other procedures. Since facelifts don’t target the forehead, a brow lift is a complementary procedure. Eyelid surgery can address the wrinkles and sagging specifically around the eyes, and also is a complementary procedure. Laser Skin Resurfacing may also be required for additional skin enhancements.
Recovering From Facelift Surgery
Recovery times and conditions vary with different types of facelifts. During your consultation, Dr. D’Amico will discuss your recovery with you. But these are some general aspects of your recovery. Because the skin is lifted away from the underlying tissue, there is a fair amount of tissue trauma with a facelift. After the procedure, your face will be wrapped in bandages and you’ll likely have drainage tubes. There will be extensive bruising and swelling that will last from two to three weeks. The first few days are the hardest, but then you will feel better quickly. Your skin will probably feel tight in the face and neck. You will likely have numbness in areas, as well. This is normal and can last up to a couple months, as the facial nerves adjust to the re-draped skin.
When Can I Return To Work After A Facelift?
With more involved facelift procedures, most patients can return to work by the third week.
Before & After Photos
For more photos of Dr. D’Amico’s patients, please view our photo gallery.*
Can I Exercise Immediately After Facelift Surgery?
As with recovery, the time getting back to your normal activities will vary. Generally, vigorous exercise, any lifting (where there is strain across your face), and sexual activity needs to wait for at least two weeks, but preferably four. You don’t want to do anything that increases blood pressure into the face area. You’ll need to be careful using blow dryers, and you’ll need to stay out of saunas and steam rooms for a couple months.
Risks of Facelift Surgery
Facelift surgery with Dr. D’Amico is major surgery, and the risks with any surgery are applicable with a facelift: bleeding, poor incision healing, infection, and reaction to anesthesia. These are specific risks that apply to this procedure:
- Injury to the nerves that control facial muscles (usually temporary)
- Numbness or tingling around the incision areas (temporary)
- Hair loss at the incision sites
- Skin discoloration (rare but can continue for several months)
- Skin healing issues (more common with smokers)
Can Fillers be Treated as an Alternative to Facelift Surgery?
Facelift surgery makes permanent changes to your aging face, but they don’t stop time. You’ll still age, but the 10 to 15 years a facelift takes off your face will be permanent. Many patients opt to have another, usually smaller procedure in five to 10 years to again slow the signs of aging.
In comparison, the results from most dermal fillers last around one year. At that point, the body will begin to absorb the filler material and you’ll need to schedule another session to maintain your results. In many cases, less product is required in subsequent sessions. But dermal fillers touted in “liquid facelifts” can never achieve the extent of rejuvenation that a surgical facelift can.
Will I Have Scarring After a Facelift?
Dr. D’Amico has extensive experience with facelift surgery. He effectively hides the incisions in the hairline and in natural creases around the ears. Scarring will be more visible for the first two weeks but can be covered with makeup. Most patients feel they don’t have to try and cover their scars after from 1-2 months. As scars mature, they will become almost imperceptible.
The first step in achieving your cosmetic goals is to request a consultation with Dr. D’Amico. He enjoys spending time with you one-on-one to understand your objectives and give his professional opinion about the procedures that are best for you. You will never feel pressured to choose surgery and you will even have a second consultation visit (included with your fee) to bring along family or loved ones and ask follow-up questions. The consultation fee is applied toward any surgical procedure you choose. We are also happy to schedule appointments by phone at (201) 567-9595.
* = Results may vary