FACELIFT

A facelift can help improve and even eliminate the most aggravating signs of aging

Facelift

When it comes to an aging face, nothing dries up the fountain of youth faster than the combination of time and gravity. Over time, essential proteins in the skin known as collagen and elastin, which work to keep the skin both firm and flexible throughout your youth, gradually break down. This gradual break down over time is responsible for the slackening of the skin present on your face and neck. The constant pull of gravity exacerbates this loosening effect and results in the appearance of jowls, creases, fine lines and wrinkles on the skin’s surface—particularly the lower portion of the face.

In addition to time and gravity, sun exposure, heredity, stress and lifestyle habits will further contribute to the visible signs of aging on the face and neck. While most individuals are aware of the inevitable changes that accompany getting older, there is nothing quite as disheartening as looking in the mirror one morning and not recognizing the face staring back at you. For men and women who are self-conscious about the aged appearance of their face or neck, facelift surgery with Haena Kim MD is the ultimate solution for comprehensive facial rejuvenation.

What is facelift surgery?

Facelift surgery, known technically as a rhytidectomy, is a surgical cosmetic procedure designed to eliminate the most aggravating signs of facial aging; such as sagging tissues, jowls, deep lines and folds found on the lower third of the face. While facelift surgery will not restore the flawless, supple complexion you had in your twenties, it will drastically improve upon your concerns and refresh your appearance with smoother and more youthful facial contours. Double-board certified plastic surgeon Dr. Kim has dedicated her practice exclusively to her specialties in restoring beauty to the face and neck and offers her patients the skill and artistry to deliver subtle and natural-looking results that last for years.

Who is a Candidate for Facelift Surgery?

As with most surgical procedures, the best candidates for facelift surgery are both men and women who are in good overall health, do not smoke and have realistic expectations as to what facelift surgery can do for them. While a vast majority of patients who undergo facelift surgery are over the age of 55 according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), there is no right or wrong age to have the procedure. Regardless of your age, if you are troubled by any of the following concerns, facelift surgery may be right for you:

  • Sagging skin around the midface, jawline and neck
  • Displaced facial volume or fullness
  • Creases extending from the nose to the edges of the mouth (nasolabial folds)
  • Creases extending from the edges of the mouth to the chin (marionette lines)
  • Jowls or a double chin

It is essential to understand that while facelift surgery is considered the gold standard of facial rejuvenation procedures, it cannot eliminate all signs of aging on the face or neck. However, for patients whose aesthetic concerns include areas like the upper portion of the face, the eyes or the neck, facelift surgery is an opportune time to combine multiple cosmetic treatments into one surgery for maximum anti-aging results and a single recovery period. At Dr. Haena Kim MD, patients will frequently opt for a neck lift, brow lift or eyelid lift to refresh multiple areas of their appearance. During your consultation at our office, Dr. Kim can help you to determine which procedure or procedures will yield the most optimal results for your needs.

How is Facelift Surgery Performed?

Your facelift surgery will be performed in the comfort of the operating room under general anesthesia so that you will not be conscious during the procedure. The total length of your operation can fall anywhere between four to six hours, depending on the extent of correction you require and whether any additional cosmetic procedures will be performed. For facelift surgery, Dr. Kim will place discreetly hidden incisions within the hairline and behind each of your ears to minimize their visibility followed by a meticulous closure.

Through these incisions, facial skin will be gently separated from the underlying muscles and connective tissues of the face so that they can be tightened and repositioned for more defined facial contours. Excess tissues or fat may be removed or rearranged depending on your unique facial structure, and the skin is then draped and pulled tightly back over the restored facial contours to smooth out lines, creases and wrinkles.

What is recovery like from facelift surgery?

Depending on the extent of your facelift procedure, the amount of downtime required after facelift surgery will vary from patient to patient. However, most patients will feel comfortable enough to resume their daily activities or return to work after about two full weeks of recovery. You can expect to experience residual bruising, swelling and stiffness immediately following your facelift surgery that will generally resolve on its own within 10 to 14 days of your operation. Dr. Kim can often speed up her patient’s overall recovery time by recommending specific oral vitamins to aid in your body’s healing process.

The skin treated on your face and neck will be particularly vulnerable to sun damage, so it is critical to apply sunscreen daily to ensure proper healing during this time. Strenuous activities such as exercise should be avoided for about four weeks, or until Dr. Kim gives you clearance at a follow-up appointment after your surgery. As long as you strictly adhere to your provided aftercare instructions, your beautiful results should begin to become apparent as swelling dissipates and incision lines fade.

What can I expect from my facelift surgery results?

While facelift surgery cannot stop the aging process, the results of your procedure will be long-lasting in comparison to any non-invasive technique. Most patients are able to enjoy their refreshed and youthful-looking appearance for 10 to 15 years before signs of aging begin to creep up once again. However, your restored facial contours will make you look years younger, and will age gracefully and naturally with you over time.

The skin treated on your face and neck will be particularly vulnerable to sun damage, so it is critical to apply sunscreen daily to ensure proper healing during this time. Strenuous activities such as exercise should be avoided for about four weeks, or until Dr. Kim gives you clearance at a follow-up appointment after your surgery. As long as you strictly adhere to your provided aftercare instructions, your beautiful results should begin to become apparent as swelling dissipates and incision lines fade.

If you are bothered by the telltale signs of aging or look older than you feel, facelift surgery is the most comprehensive solution to combating the effects of gravity and time on your skin’s appearance. To learn more about what facelift surgery can do for you, contact Dr. Haena Kim MD at 510-570-1566 to book your initial consultation today.

Dr. Haena Kim Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery is located in Walnut Creek, CA. We serve the surrounding East Bay areas, including Contra Costa County, San Ramon, Concord, Pleasant Hill, Danville, Richmond, San Pablo, and Lafayette.

Frequently Asked Questions

Will my treatment look overdone?

This question still ranks as among patients’ top concerns but it is one that need not worry today’s facelift patients. New techniques and a more detailed understanding of how to achieve subtle but deeply rejuvenating results have made the overly-tight or stretched look that patients fear a thing of the past. All patients who have a modern facelift will experience some initial tightness as they heal — a natural result wherever patients have sutured incisions — but tightness is limited to recovery. Smoothly draped skin that looks refreshed but not overdone is routinely attainable, especially when patients select a highly-qualified board-certified facial plastic surgeon, such as Dr. Haena Kim, to perform their surgery.

Is a facelift performed differently for Asian patients?

Understanding the unique anatomy of Asian patients can make a substantial difference in the quality and naturalness patients enjoy from their facelift results. Excellent surgical skills are necessary but not alone sufficient in achieving outstanding results for patients of Asian descent. A doctor with significant expertise and experience treating Asian patients can do more to preserve the features which reflect your ethnicity and individuality while adding the youthfulness you seek. Dr. Haena Kim is uniquely qualified in this area and can provide many examples of the results she has achieved for Asian patients who have had a facelift surgery performed by her.

Is a facelift all I need to youthful face I want?

A facelift provides substantial rejuvenation to the lower two-thirds of the face. However, some patients may wish to see more revitalization in the forehead area, as well. A brow lift can address excess or sagging skin in the upper third of the face for total rejuvenation of the facial area and the most comprehensive results. In most cases, patients who require both procedures can have them in a single surgery. This combined surgery is more complex and longer but provides outstanding results for qualifying patients. An in-person consultation is always the sole determinant of your course of treatment. A board-certified facial plastic surgeon, like Dr. Haena Kim, can help you determine the best surgical plan for your needs and goals.

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