How Long Does It Take to Look Normal After a Facelift?
The facelift is one of the most reliable ways to achieve transformative results when it comes to facial rejuvenation. However, the facelift is a complex and major surgery, so it’s normal to be concerned about your recovery. Although certain facelifts like the mini facelift can come with minimal downtime, a traditional facelift can require some time away from your normal lifestyle so you can successfully recover. Here’s what you can expect from your recovery timeline after a facelift with Dr. Angelchik at our Glendale practice.
The First Week
Your first week after surgery will be the most difficult and important part of your recovery process. During this time, you should focus on getting your rest at home and preventing infection by following Dr. Angelchik’s detailed instructions. You likely won’t feel comfortable being seen in public during the first week. Here’s what to expect on a day-to-day basis:
- Day 1: You’ll feel groggy and will need assistance from a close friend or family member. If a short scar facelift is done, you’ll be able to go home after surgery. If a neck dissection is done, then you will stay in a recovery care facility. Make sure to take prescribed pain medications according to directions so you can get your rest.
- Day 2: You’ll typically follow up with Dr. Angelchik to monitor swelling, incisions, and dressings. You’ll still experience discomfort and should continue to take pain medications. . Drains are typically removed two days after surgery
- Day 3: You may begin to feel better but visible swelling and bruising will begin to peak at this point. Continue to take medications to manage discomfort and swelling, as well as follow Dr. Angelchik’s instructions on preventing inflammation and infection
- Day 4-6: Major swelling might begin to recede at this point, and you’ll likely be able to go without pain medications. Continue to keep your head elevated at all times. Avoid strenuous exertion and housework for the first couple of weeks after surgery Sutures are removed on Day 6 or 7. The Second Week
You’ll continue to experience bruising and swelling, as well as some feelings of tightness and numbness. This is usually caused by swelling, so it’s normal. If you have concerns at this point, it’s important to contact Dr. Angelchik right away. Toward the end of your second week, you might feel more comfortable returning to regular activities – but you should still avoid extensive physical activities like going to the gym. Since you’ll still have some noticeable swelling and bruising for the first two weeks, you may not feel comfortable enough returning to social activities.
The Third and Fourth Week
Most patients begin to feel and look like themselves again during this phase, so you may feel comfortable enough returning to your regular schedule. You can still expect some redness and minor swelling around your incision sites, but you’ll begin to see the transformative changes in your face from surgery. From this point on, your final results will continue to improve and settle in – and you can enjoy a refreshed, more youthful look! It will take up to 6 months for any numbness to resolve in areas where flaps were elevated.
Schedule a Consultation
The facelift is one of the best ways to feel like your best self. To see if a facelift is a good solution for you, we invite you to contact us by calling or filling out our online form.
Dr. Paul Angelchik is a Phoenix plastic surgeon who is board-certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. He is also a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. Dr. Angelchik is well-trained and experienced in all forms of plastic surgery, namely breast enhancement and facial rejuvenation. He has been serving patients for over 20 years. Dr. Angelchik brings his surgical experience, expertise, and quality care to patients in and around Phoenix, Arizona.