Facelift surgery is somewhat unique in that there are really two types of recovery to consider. There is physical recovery, which involves how long before you can return to work, exercise, and perform other daily tasks. The other type of recovery—social recovery—is often overlooked. Social recovery refers to the time it takes for facelift patients to feel comfortable attending an important social event such as a wedding or class reunion.
Men and women considering a facelift at our Chicago practice should think about the timing of the procedure to ensure they are fully healed before a special social event. In this blog post, I’ll explain the difference between these 2 types of recovery and describe the expected recovery timeline that most facelift patients can expect.
Many of our facelift patients are pleasantly surprised that recovery is shorter and involves less discomfort than they anticipated. During more than 25 years as a body and facial plastic surgeon in Chicago, I have developed surgical techniques that minimize the trauma to tissue during facelift surgery so that my patients recover more quickly and without much discomfort.
These techniques also help minimize the bruising that commonly occurs after a facelift. For most of our patients, bruising completely resolves within 10 days of the procedure. In most cases, facelift patients can return to work and normal daily activities 10 to 14 days after surgery. I usually give my patients permission to return to the gym a week after surgery, as I wrote in an earlier blog post. The caveat is that they should gradually resume the intensity of their workouts.
Even though the techniques I use can minimize bruising and shorten recovery time, patients should still allow additional time to completely heal if they’re planning to attend a high-profile social event. Most patients feel comfortable going to work or out to dinner within a week to 10 days of surgery, but they’ll look their best after another few weeks.
Experienced, skilled surgeons create natural-looking facelift results, and planning ahead gives you time to consult with a number of surgeons before making a choice. Scheduling your surgery may take weeks from the time of your initial consult, so you should keep that in mind too. Although complications are rare, giving yourself a little extra time between surgery and a special occasion enables you to resolve any issues. Optimally, you should allow at least 6 weeks between your surgery and the event.
Also, remember that facelift surgery only addresses the lower portion of the face and comprehensive rejuvenation may involve additional procedures such as eyelid surgery or a brow lift. You can see the results that you can expect following facelift surgery in our gallery of before-and-after photos.
To request a facelift consultation at our Chicago practice, contact us using the online form or call our office at (312) 788-2560 to schedule an appointment.