As baby boomers age, the number of people who are interested in facial rejuvenation procedures has increased dramatically. With advances in plastic surgery procedures, their choices have also grown and now include traditional full facelift procedures and a mini facelifts. As a result, many patients are now opting for the mini facelift. Research says there are a variety of factors, but the growth trend is mainly because it takes less time, requires only light anesthesia and the recovery period is shorter.
What’s Involved with a Traditional Full Facelift?
A traditional full facelift is a major medical operation that includes tightening of the forehead, cheeks, jowls, and neck.
The full facelift procedure, which could last for several hours, requires deep anesthesia and perhaps a higher level of medical clearance. As a result, not all patients will be candidates for the full lift. In addition, people can’t smoke for the weeks around the procedure or take blood thinners or aspirin the week before. Other considerations are that some individuals may require an overnight hospital stay and they might experience temporary numbness, which typically fades in a couple months.
The recovery time for a full facelift will vary between individuals. The stitches are removed after a week, and most of the bruising resolves after two weeks.
Potential risks of a full facelift can include infection, bleeding, facial nerve damage, and necrosis of skin flaps. The chance of these complications is higher among people who smoke and those with diabetes and hypertension.
A Mini Facelift Is a Less Invasive Procedure
On the other hand, a mini facelift—also known as a weekend facelift—takes less time (generally 40 to 90 minutes) and frequently is performed with light anesthesia. This will lessen some concerns for many potential patients. The procedure is often favored by younger people, those who already have had a traditional facelift, or patients just interested in targeting specific minor areas.
For example, the mini facelift lessens minor sagging around the neck, cheeks, and jawline. (It’s not done on the eyes or forehead.) The weekend facelift is intended for patients just starting to experience signs of aging, so most likely people in their 30s and 40s. And while the effects of a full facelift are permanent, a mini facelift lasts about five to 10 years.
During a mini facelift, the doctor will remove excess fat and reshape the muscles through three or more small incisions. A small camera goes underneath the skin to allow the physician to see the work without having to make any large incisions.
After a mini facelift, patients need wear a bandage for two days and try to keep their head elevated for as much time as possible for a week. The sutures usually come out after a week, and people can likely go back to work a few days post-surgery.
The risks here are bruising, bleeding, blood clotting, scarring, and swelling. And as with the full facelift, there’s the chance of a bad reaction to the anesthesia.
Talk to a Professional About Your Options
Of course, no two faces are alike, and only a qualified surgeon will be able to tell you if your goals can be achieved with a mini facelift or if you would actually need a full facelift. Contact the experts at Aesthetica for a consultation by calling (703) 729-5553.