Treat the Signs of Aging with a Facelift
The face loses volume and starts to sag; wrinkles, lines, and creases seem to multiply by the day. Heredity, gravity, stress, and other environmental factors do their part, as well. All are normal consequences of aging. To fight back, treat these visible signs of aging, and rejuvenate the face many individuals come to Dr. Kearney in San Diego for a facelift.
What is a facelift?
A surgical facelift, also known as a rhytidectomy, reverses various signs of aging in the face and neck. It’s the most extensive method for reducing the appearance of facial wrinkles and sagging of the face. The goal of a facelift is to improve the contour of the patient’s face and neck.
Who is a good candidate?
You’re a good candidate if you have sagging skin, wrinkles that run from the nose to the mouth, and feel as if you’ve lost elasticity in the skin on your face. Facelifts are also great for people with loose skin in the neck, and for people who think their face has taken on a perpetually tired appearance. Beyond that, the candidate should be in good physical and emotional health, shouldn’t smoke, and should have realistic expectations and goals for the procedure.
Dr. Robert Kearney discusses how to prevent facial aging and the top treatments to combat the four most common signs of aging on the face.
What are the benefits of a facelift with Dr. Kearney?
The facelift is one of the first cosmetic surgeries, with the first documented procedure performed in Berlin way back in 1901. The reason for their enduring popularity? Facelift surgery is generally thought to take from 10 to 15 years off the patient’s facial age. And who among us couldn’t use that?
Modern facelifts with Dr. Kearney are different than those performed even just 10 or 20 years ago. That’s because today the goal is to provide the most natural-looking rejuvenation, not the stretched look of botched facelifts. To achieve this, today Dr. Kearney pays more attention to the underlying musculature and how it can be elevated, rather than exciting and stretching the most amount of surface skin. This ensures really great, natural-looking results for our San Diego patients.
While full facelifts do require an involved recovery, Dr. Kearney uses various methods to directly address each patient’s unique aging. Some of those methods, such as a mid-face lift don’t require the same recovery.
All in all, there still is no match for the permanent facial rejuvenation delivered with these procedures.
View our Facelift before and after gallery
What should I do to prepare for my facelift with Dr. Kearney?
You’ll prepare as you do for any major surgery. This means you’ll need to stop taking blood-thinning medications and anti-inflammatory medications and supplements. All of these can cause bleeding, which means more bruising. If you smoke, you’ll need to stop for at least two weeks prior to surgery and two weeks afterward, as smoking decreases blood circulation, which impairs healing.
Much of your preparation should be for your recovery. You’ll want to fill your pain and antibiotic prescriptions prior to surgery. You’ll want to arrange someone to help out around the house, at least for a few days, as you won’t feel like moving around much. You should make a nice recovery nest filled with soft cushions, pillows, blankets, and plenty of entertainment, whether it’s booked, your iPad, or just the TV remote. You’ll want to have a spot where you can simply lay low for the first week of your time at home.
What can I expect during the procedure?
There are several variations available. Dr. Kearney can perform a “mini,” “limited incision,” “skin only,” or “standard” facelift depending on the degree of skin laxity and the length of the incision. In many cases, Dr. Kearney performs a neck lift at the same time as a facelift to ensure that the skin of the face and neck match.
Facelift surgery is performed while the patient is under general anesthesia or local anesthesia with light sedation. An incision is made within the hairline and follows the natural contour to the ear. Excess skin and tissue are pulled up and then removed. Dr. Kearney tightens not just the surface skin, but also the underlying muscle.
What our clients are saying about their facelifts:
"My heart will always be grateful to Dr. Kearney for what he’s done to help improve my self image. Since my facelift, I love who I see everyday when I look at myself. I feel refreshed and more alive. The kindness and caring that he gives to his patients is unmatched, and I consider him not only my surgeon but also my friend. He is a gifted surgeon, and an honest man."
What is the recovery time?
Facelifts are generally an outpatient procedure. You’ll most likely be sent home with an elastic bandage, dressings, and drains in the treated site. Sutures are typically taken out within seven to 10 days; swelling and bruising dissipate at about that same time. Most facelift patients return to work 10 days after surgery and can resume regular activities within three to four weeks. The neck may feel tight and possibly numb for a few weeks after surgery. Scars from your incision fade and become nearly unnoticeable over time.
How long will my results last from a traditional facelift?
The results created by Dr. Kearney with full facelift surgery are permanent. You’ll have to be patient waiting to see your final results, as swelling can come and go, especially in the evening, for months. Most people think a facelift takes from 10-15 years off the age of their face.
Of course, the aging process won’t stop. But your face will begin aging from a younger starting point, so to speak. To keep up with the process, many patients have a more limited second procedure in 5-10 years after having a full facelift.
Is facelift surgery safe?
As mentioned above, facelifts have been performed since 1901. That’s quite a track record. This is major surgery, and it entails the risks inherent in any surgery: excessive bleeding, poor incision healing, infection, reaction to anesthesia, and the like. Thanks to Dr. Kearney’s board-certified skills and experience as a plastic surgeon, these risks are quite low.
Specific to facelifts, there can be some temporary nerve injury. This is due to lifting and re-draping the skin. The nerves need to adapt, which they do. It simply takes some time for any initial burning, itching, or numbness to resolve.
Is facelift recovery painful?
The first few days following your surgery with Dr. Kearney involve the most discomfort, but it is not considered significant pain by most patients. The pain medication prescribed typically handles the pain quite well. Swelling and bruising is more a part of this phase of your recovery and, while not painful, it does require some patience. Most patients have drainage tubes to keep fluid from accumulating. You’ll need to sleep with your head elevated for the entire first week, making sure not to roll over onto your face. Swelling can come and go for months, so you should be prepared for that.
How much does a facelift in San Diego cost?
Prices vary from patient to patient. Click here to view our pricing, to get the exact price, please contact us for a consultation.
Financing is also provided by CareCredit. They offer a full range of payment plans and patients can finance up to $25,000. CareCredit offers our patients 6, 12, and 18 months no interest plans as well as plans with terms of up to 60 months at 14.9%. You can apply today by visiting www.carecredit.com or calling 1-800-365-8295.
Does insurance cover a facelift?
No. These are considered to be elective/aesthetic procedures, so they are not covered by health insurance. If you have a health savings account, you can use those funds to pay for the procedure, however. Dr. Kearney does offer financing through CareCredit and Alphaeon Credit.
Schedule Your Consultation Today
For more information about the facelift surgery, or to determine if you are a candidate for the procedure, be sure to book a one-on-one consult with Dr. Robert Kearney! Call our San Diego office at (858) 677-9352, or click here to send us an appointment request form. Our practice looks forward to serving you!