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Christopher Hove, MD

A Timeline for Facelift Recovery: Understanding Patient Healing

An older woman smilingOur team believes in helping the people of Philadelphia look younger and more refreshed. This can be accomplished through non-surgical skin care procedures, though some of the best results tend to be achieved thanks to facelift surgery and similar wrinkle-reducing facial rejuvenation procedures.

Many patients who are considering a facelift want to know about the healing process and what to expect. We'd like to take a few moments to consider the recovery process following facelift surgery. This timeline is a broad overview of what to expect.

What to Expect After Your Facelift Is Performed

Immediately after your facelit has been performed, it is not uncommon to experience grogginess and fatigue. This is often the reaction your body will have as it comes out from under the effects of general anesthesia. This is normal. Patients are advised to get ample rest and avoid physical activity.

What to Expect in the First Few Days After Surgery

Pain and discomfort are both quite common in the first few days after a facelift has been performed. The same is true with bruising and swelling. Patients should continue to get ample rest, with their back propped up by pillows so they do not lay down completely flat. For soreness, recommended pain relievers can be taken as directed. While strenuous physical activities should be avoided, patients ought to walk around a bit in their home in order to promote circulation and help prevent blood clots.

What to Expect by the End of the First Week

At the end of the first week, patients should notice the pain and discomfort they've experienced becoming less of an issue. A follow-up visit will likely have taken place by this time in order to monitor healing progress and address any post-surgical concerns as they come up.

What to Expect by Week Two

By the second week, patients will notice a significant improvement in pain and discomfort. By this time, the bruising a patient has experienced should also be diminished, with further improvements in bruising continuing as the days go by. Patients will also note that major swelling will have gone down by this time.

Most patients will be able to return to work by the two-week mark, though they may need to avoid certain job duties depending on the nature of their occupation.

What to Expect by the End of the First Month

By the end of the first month after facelift surgery, patients should notice a continued reduction in minor swelling. Some minor swelling and issues with numbness around the incisions sites may persist, though improvements will continue to be steady. Patients will be able to return to a number of regular activities at this point. Another follow-up or two will have taken place by the end of the first month to make sure healing is progressing properly.

The Recovery Process Moving Forward: The Months Ahead

In the months after a facelift, patients will notice the minor swelling abate and will be able to return to their normal activities. This includes being able to go into hot tubs and saunas as well as heavy lifting. Issues with sensitivity and numbness around incisions sites should resolve by this point as well.

A Word on Post-Surgical Scarring

Scarring is a reality after any surgical procedure, and it's no exception with a facelift. Thankfully the incisions are generally well-hidden, and they are difficult to notice. With that said, scarring also fades over time, so much so in some cases that people may not even notice the scar when its in their view. Issues with scarring can be discussed in greater detail as part of the consultation process.

Contact Our Cosmetic Plastic Surgery Center

For more information about facelift surgery and how it can help you look younger and more refreshed, be sure to contact our cosmetic skin care and facial plastic surgery center today. We look forward to your visit and discussing these matters with you in greater detail.

Tagged In: Facelift, Facial Plastic Surgery

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I believe that to excel in any career, one has to keep reaching, learning, and sharpening their skills, instead of resting idle on some self-declared title. At the Hove Center for Facial Plastic Surgery, we continually strive to bring you the latest advanced techniques and products in the field of facial plastic surgery, both cosmetic and reconstructive.

-Dr. Christopher Hove