Facelifts, otherwise known as rhytidectomy, are a form of plastic surgery that help extensively reduce the wrinkles and sagging of the face that come with aging.
Traditionally, this is accomplished by literally lifting the skin off the face so that the subcutaneous tissues can be tightened. The facial skin is then replaced more smoothly in a way that evens out creases and wrinkles.Problem areas of the face that can be corrected with a facelift include crow’s feet (wrinkles by the corners of the eyes), forehead lines, jowls, double chins, and vertical folds by the front of the neck.
Factors that can exacerbate age’s negative aesthetic effects on the face include genetics, gravity, and exposure to the sun.Ideal candidates are generally in the age range between late 30s and early 70s, as they still have some skin elasticity. It should be noted that for younger patients or those with less severe wrinkling, more minor procedures may be better suited to achieve your aesthetic goals.
Complimentary Consultation at Clinic 360
Facelifts should be performed at a reputable plastic surgery firm such as Clinic 360 in Toronto to ensure that results are optimal and long-term. During your complimentary consultation prior to surgery, your surgeon will examine your facial structure, skin texture, colour, and elasticity. Your medical history will also be assessed along with individual risk factors such as smoking, tendency of scarring, high blood pressure, any prescriptions or supplements you regularly take, and issues with blood clotting.
What to Expect
Your expectations for a facelift procedure should be realistic and an examination will be made into your mental and emotional attitude towards the procedure. A facelift will not change your appearance drastically, reverse all the effects of aging, or stop the process entirely. Rather, it is meant to help you look your best while giving your face a more youthful, healthy appearance.
It is important to be honest about your medical situation with your surgeon at Clinic 360 during the consultation as this can help ensure your results are in line with your expectations along with aiding in avoiding any unnecessary risks, both during and after your facelift surgery.
The aesthetic benefits of your facelift can also be augmented with complementary plastic surgeries such as facial liposuction and a neck lift procedure.
For best results, you should be in good health and of optimal weight.
How is a FaceLift Performed?
Depending on you and your surgeon’s preference (along with your medical history), either general anaesthetic or intravenous sedation in conjunction with local anaesthetic may be used for your facelift procedure. More often than not, general anaesthesia is used to maximize patient comfort. Your surgeon at Clinic 360 will start your surgery by making an incision in the temple area that circles around the front of the ear. The skin is then raised so that the muscle and tissue underneath can be tightened along with removing any excess fat and skin. The lifted skin is then replaced and sutured. Incision lines are generally made along natural creases such as the hairline or beard areas (in the case of male patients). The entire procedure takes between 3 and 4 hours, with the incision areas being coated in a protective dressing immediately following surgery.
There are some variations on the traditional FaceLift including a “Mini FaceLift” and “MidFace Lift”:
As with a regular FaceLift, Mini FaceLifts are performed to enhance the appearance of an aged face by tightening the subcutaneous tissues and removing excess skin and fatty tissue. The differences with the mini technique include smaller incisions and quicker recovery. However, the procedure only rejuvenates the lower half of the face and neck, with less dramatic results.
In a MidFace Lift, the tissue is lifted in the triangle formed by the two corners of each eye and the corresponding corner of the mouth. This triangle is also known as the MidFace and begins to sag in a patient’s 30s and 40s. A MidFace Lift will restore cheeks to a more youthful appearance; however, the rest of the face will remain relatively unaltered.
FaceLift Surgery Risks
As with any form of plastic surgery, facelifts carry a certain set of potential risks. However, having your procedure performed at a reputable, recognized plastic surgery firm such as Clinic 360 in Toronto greatly reduces your chances of complications. The most common risks associated with facelifts are:
- Reactions to anaesthesia
- Bleeding under the skin
- Numbness (may last for 6 months to a year)
- Damage to the nerves that supply the muscles in the face (may cause facial spasms or paralysis, both temporary and permanent)
- Hair loss (alopecia)
- Tissue loss
- Embolisms (blood clots)
Many facelift complications can be avoided by being completely honest with your surgeon at Clinic 360 during your complimentary consultation. At this time, they will go over all risks in further detail with you as well. You also should be sure to carefully follow your doctor’s instructions, both prior to and after your facelift surgery.
Once surgery is completed, it will be at the discretion of your surgeon as to whether you stay overnight or return home the same day. Either way, you should arrange for a friend of family member to come collect you as residual anaesthesia will render you unable to drive. Following surgery, your doctor at Clinic 360 will wrap your incision areas in protective dressings that will be removed after a day or two. A drainage tube may also be placed behind your ear to help reduce swelling though it should be understood that some puffiness and bruising is inevitable. The drainage tube will also be removed within one or two days and your surgeon may instruct you to use a cold compress as well in order to reduce swelling. Your stitches should be removed within 5 to 10 days of your facelift procedure.
Recovery usually takes 2 to 3 weeks, during which time your doctor may prescribe you medication for any pain. Patients should avoid strenuous or rigorous activity during this period.
Cost & Financing
FaceLifts are considered an elective cosmetic procedure and, as such, are not covered by health insurance. The cost of a FaceLift at Clinic 360 in Toronto generally begins at approximately $12,000. If you are unable to pay for the procedure in its entirety up front, financing and payment plans are available.