facelift patient

Aging impacts everyone sooner or later. Even if you take good care of yourself and put forth your best efforts to maintain healthy skin, you will eventually feel the effects of gravity, sun exposure and the natural aging process. Wrinkles form. Tissues sag. The volume that once made your face look youthfully full diminishes and prominent bands may develop along your neck.

A facelift can be a great option to reverse these changes and restore a more youthful complexion. While Dr. Gartside offers a wide range of minimally invasive facial rejuvenation options, no treatment can deliver the truly customized, natural-looking results of a facelift procedure. Dr. Gartside can help you look as much as 10 years younger after your facelift, so you can appear as young and vibrant on the outside as you feel inside.

Because every facelift is custom-crafted to address the unique goals of the patient, the only way to determine whether this is the right option for you is to speak with Dr. Gartside in person. Please call 703-742-8004 today to schedule a consultation at one of our offices in the Washington DC metropolitan area.

Am I a Candidate for a Facelift?

You may be a candidate for facelift surgery if you are in good overall health, are a non-smoker, have good skin elasticity and have realistic expectations for the outcome of your procedure. In addition, you should be looking to address one or more of the following aesthetic issues:

  • Deep facial folds from the nose to the edges of the mouth
  • Deep creases along the corners of the mouth
  • Deep creases below the eyes
  • Jowls
  • Drooping cheeks
  • Banding in the neck
  • Sagging skin and fat beneath the chin and in the neck region

An important part of determining whether this procedure is right for you is understanding what a facelift cannot do. Facelift surgery isn’t intended to address sagging skin or wrinkles around the eyes. If this is a concern for you, then an eyelid lift (blepharoplasty) may be a better option for you. If creases or sagging in the forehead is your primary concern, then you may benefit from a brow lift instead. In some instances, Dr. Gartside may recommend one of these procedures in conjunction with a facelift for enhanced results.

How Is a Facelift Done?

No two faces have the same features and no two people experience the exact same signs of aging. To achieve beautiful, natural-looking facial rejuvenation results, Dr. Gartside develops a customized facelift treatment plan for each patient. This personalization and attention to detail ensure your procedure addresses your unique issues and aesthetic goals.

Depending on your needs, Dr. Gartside may recommend one of the following facelift options:

Full Facelift

This is the most comprehensive facelift option. If this technique is chosen, your entire lower facial region — including your neck — will be treated. Dr. Gartside will refresh and recontour your face to improve creases, sagging skin, depleted muscle tone and a poorly defined jawline. Although this type of facelift involves the most extensive incisions, they are placed so that they are hidden by the ears and hairline, and scars are virtually undetectable after surgery. Traditional facelift procedures are recommended for patients who experience significant signs of aging throughout the facial region.

Midface Lift

One of the first areas that is noticeably affected by age and gravity is the midface — the region that extends from the lower eyelids to the lines that connect the nose to the corners of the mouth. As the midface loses its fullness and elasticity, it can make you appear more tired, rundown or older than you really are. The midface lift improves this critical area by defining the cheekbones and reducing creases under the lower eyelids. It can be an ideal option for patients who are concerned with signs of aging in the middle of their face, but do not have issues like jowls or neck bands that require correction.

Mini Facelift

A mini facelift is a less invasive alternative to a full facelift that addresses sagging in the mid and lower facial region. The benefits of this approach include shorter incisions, quicker recovery time and less postoperative discomfort. The main drawback of this approach is that it yields a less dramatic result than a standard facelift or a midface lift. A mini facelift is limited in its ability to address deep wrinkles, significantly sagging skin, fully formed jowls or tissue laxity in the neck. This procedure is ideal for patients who are only experiencing mild signs of facial aging.

Endoscopic Facelift

This is the least invasive facelift option we offer. In an endoscopic facelift, a small camera (called an endoscope) is inserted through small incisions and used to visualize the treatment area. This allows Dr. Gartside to lift and rejuvenate the necessary structures without pulling back the facial skin to reveal the underlying tissues. The endoscopic technique eliminates the need for larger incisions, thereby reducing scarring for a better cosmetic outcome and facilitating a faster recovery.

The Facelift Procedure

On the day of your procedure, our staff will administer intravenous sedation or general anesthesia to keep you comfortable during the surgery. Dr. Gartside will then make incisions according to the facelift technique that was agreed upon in your consultation. This allows the tissue and the muscle beneath the skin to be repositioned, removed or tightened to achieve your desired results. Dr. Gartside will then redrape the skin and remove any excess.

Upon completion of these adjustments, Dr. Gartside will close the incisions with surgical tape, skin adhesive, special clips or removable or absorbable sutures. Using these types of fixtures allows for a successful surgery without removing hair from the incision sites. Dr. Gartside will finish the procedure by applying a protective covering where the incisions were made. You’ll be discharged with instructions for recovery and, if appropriate, pain medications.

Facelift After Care

Facelift surgery recovery time varies between each patient. Swelling, bruising and discomfort are normal parts of the healing process. Cold compresses and pain medications can help manage these effects while they are most significant. Resting in an upright position during the day and sleeping with your head elevated higher than your heart are also recommended. Dr. Gartside will supply you with a thorough list of restrictions and guidelines to make sure you heal properly. These include:

  • Instructions for incision care
  • Tips for pain management
  • Limiting exercise and other strenuous activities
  • Taking time off work and social commitments to ensure proper healing

Facelift patients are typically able to return to work after two weeks. It will still be a few more weeks before you are cleared to resume all normal activities. Although changes can continue to occur, the bulk of the healing process will be complete around six weeks.

It is critical to keep a healthy lifestyle after the procedure in order to reach the full potential and effectiveness of your facelift. A proper diet, high-quality skincare products and daily sun protection will help maintain your rejuvenated appearance. Please keep in mind that an ongoing relationship with Dr. Gartside is important for a successful recovery.

Contact Our Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon Today

You can’t escape aging, but you don’t have to live with the way it makes you look. If you are interested in a facelift, please contact New Image Plastic Surgery Associates today by calling 703-742-8004 or completing our online form to schedule a consultation. Dr. Roberta Gardside serves patients in Reston, Fairfax and McLean, Virginia, and throughout the Washington DC area. For over two decades, Dr. Gartside has devoted herself to helping patients look their natural, beautiful best through the art and science of aesthetic surgery.