Known as a rhytidectomy, a face lift is designed to alleviate some of the changes to the face that occur with aging, gravity, and the effects of our environment. This procedure elevates and tightens the facial skin and underlying tissue to eliminate most facial wrinkles and creases. This restores facial shape to create a more youthful appearance.
Most people’s physical characteristics age in a similar way. Slowly the face begins to change. The forehead begins to show lines, and the eyebrows may move lower. The upper eyelid skin will get loose. Fatty deposits will become more visible in the lower eyelids and the skin and tone of the lower lids will become lax.
Fine lines will start to appear and the cheek tissue will start to weaken and sag. The nasolabial fold, which extends from the nostril to the corner of the mouth, often becomes more pronounced. Another line will form from the corner of the mouth to the side of the chin, the marionette line. The jowl will also form and this will alter the sharp contours of the youthful jawline.
Along with these signs of aging, which are mostly due to gravity, there is a loss of facial volume. This is due to a combination of less facial fat and descent of facial fat from its location in youth to its location in middle and advanced age.
Signs of aging are also present in the neck, and often these signs are present before aging signs in the face. The skin loosens and often there is fat accumulation just under the chin. A very thin muscle in the neck gets loose with age and leads to the loss of the youthful angular contour of the neck.
Minimally Invasive Face Lift Procedures
Luckily there are a number of procedures to reverse nearly all of these signs of aging. We try to tailor the procedure to the specific problem and to each patient, taking into account their current appearance, and their desired appearance. We consider the part of the face that they are concerned about most and we begin to formulate a plan considering non-invasive or minimally invasive procedures first, and moving up to more invasive procedures if necessary.
In some cases, patients may be candidates for a combination of injectables in order to improve the volume in areas of volume loss. Injectable fillers such as Restylane, Juvederm, Kybella, or Radiesse can be utilized to improve contours in discreet areas where lines or folds have developed.
Sculptra is used to restore volume over larger areas where volume in the form of facial fat is lost through the normal aging process. In certain patients, volume correction will fill out loose skin and delay the need for a surgical procedure.
Botox can be utilized to improve lines and wrinkles specifically due to excessive muscle activity. The combination of these injectables can be utilized to create a more well-rested, rejuvenated appearance without surgery with Dr. Garramone’s Diamond Lift, a non-surgical face lift developed by him and customized to meet your needs.
In some cases, Thermage can be utilized together with these injectables as another nonsurgical method of tightening the skin. Or InstaLift, which is our newest procedure. Scheduling a complementary consultation is helpful to assess your options.
Surgical Face Lift Rejuvenation
When surgical rejuvenation of the face is necessary, there are still several choices. Some patients are candidates for a short incision facelift. These patients tend to be younger with less significant signs of aging particularly in the lower face and neck. This operation is accomplished with an incision that is confined to the curves in front of the ear. It does not extend behind the ear. It can be performed either under IV sedation or with local anesthesia alone.
If more advanced signs of aging are present, a facelift and necklift is performed through incisions placed in natural skin creases in front of each ear and extending up into the hairline above the ear and possibly into the hair behind the ear.
This operation has been performed for a number of years. It has been refined over the years and it remains the gold standard for turning back the hands of time and restoring a more youthful appearance to the aging face. It can deliver either a dramatic or a subtle improvement depending on the needs and desires of the patient.
The procedure is individualized for each patient. The best patients for this procedure have good underlying bone structure and reasonably good skin elasticity with aging signs such as jowl formation, droopiness of the cheek and laxity of the neck. In most cases, the procedure is combined with other enhancements, such as a brow lift, neck lift or eyelid surgery to more completely rejuvenate the face.
Face lifts are usually performed on an outpatient basis under IV sedation with local anesthesia. Patients typically return to their usual routines approximately one to two weeks after surgery, and makeup may be applied after three to five days. Strenuous sports and other activities, however, should not be performed for two weeks.
Facial implants enhance the basic structure of the face by aesthetically recontouring certain areas such as the cheeks or chin to create a more attractive look. It is not uncommon for patients to supplement surgical procedures such as a face lift or a brow lift with a facial implant procedure to restore a more youthful appearance. Quite often a chin implant is placed at the time of a rhinoplasty, an operation to reshape the nose, because the relationship of the nose and chin are important to one another in achieving natural facial proportions.
Facial contouring entails inserting an implant within the facial tissue through small incisions made on the inside of the upper and/or lower lips. If external incisions are necessary, they are small and discreetly placed in the natural contours or creases of the face. In almost all cases, the procedures are performed on an outpatient basis. Full recovery typically extends over one or two weeks.
To schedule a consultation for a Face Lift, call Dr. Garramone’s office at 239-482-1900.