Having facelift surgery is a permanent way to address the visual effects of ageing and while there are a number of non-invasive options available, it is the longest lasting approach to maintaining a youthful visage. Let’s take a closer look at the question of ‘is a facelift worth it’ so you can weigh up the costs of facial plastic surgery with the benefits.
What Causes The Skin To Sag?
Everyone responds differently to the effects of ageing. Sagging skin and uneven fat deposits are among the most common symptoms, as the skin loses its collagen and elastin, and the force of gravity tends to draw the skin downwards.
Various lifestyle factors such as sun exposure, dehydration, alcohol and tobacco use, as well as repeated facial expressions can accelerate this process. Also, your own genetic make up plays a role in what parts of your face age and how your skin responds.
How Does Plastic Surgery On The Face Work?
Your plastic surgeon will make an incision along your hairline, to create a point from which the skin, tissues and fatty pads can be pulled and lifted. The objective is to lift the muscles and skin up, to create a tighter, firmer complexion.
Once this has been done any extra skin is removed and the incision is neatly closed up. Positioning the incision along the hairline is to make it as invisible as possible after the plastic surgery has been performed.
What’s The Downtime And Recovery Like?
Once your plastic surgery is complete your surgeon will bandage your face up carefully for 24-hours. You are recommended to sleep with your head propped up for at least the first three days afterwards, as this will help to minimise any bruising and swelling.
Your bruising and swelling will improve significantly within the first seven to ten days after your procedure but you can expect some swelling to persist for a few weeks. During this time you may want to consider wearing heavier duty camouflage make up to cover up any lingering bruising. Most patients take a few weeks off work and their usual day-to-day activities.
How Does Facelift Surgery Compare To Less Invasive Procedures?
There are less invasive alternatives available to you, if improving the condition of your skin is your aim. Dermal fillers and microdermabrasion can improve the contours of your face and tighten your visage significantly but they are not permanent and the effects will only last from a few weeks to a few months, depending on your treatment in question.
Dermal fillers may last for up to two years before your body absorbs the hyaluronic acid. You may experience a little swelling after the procedure but can expect to resume your usual activities much faster than if you opt for a facelift. The effects are quite instant however, and ideal if you want to address premature signs of ageing.
Fillers add volume and contour to your face, and can also plump your skin up to a degree. If you would like to address significant sagging however you would want to consider a more permanent solution.
Botulinum toxin injections will only last for three to four months and do not show immediate effects. They work by paralysing the muscle that cause wrinkles to appear, making them ideal for static wrinkles that have firmed. If your aim is to tighten your skin, then Botulinum toxin could work for you.
How Do The Costs Compare?
Because a facelift is a surgical and permanent procedure it does cost more than dermal fillers or Botulinum toxin. Your surgeon will provide you with a treatment cost once the colling off period has elapsed and he or she is satisfied that you are a suitable candidate.
In order to compare ‘is a facelift worth it’ you would need to consider the cost of downtime and the number of filler or Botulinum toxin treatments you would pay for over a five to 12 year period, as this is how long the effects of the facelift can be expected to last.
When Is A Facelift Worth It?
If you would like to address creases below your lower eyelids, lift sagging in the middle of your face, address a double chin or sagging of your jowls, then facelift surgery might be for you.
If you would like an anti-ageing solution that lasts for between five and 12 years, with minimal interventions during that period, then a face lift could be a suitable approach. If you plan on combining it with other treatments such as an eyelid or nose job, a facelift may be appropriate.
Remember also that Medicare and private health insurance won’t cover the costs of plastic surgery, you would need to cover the costs out of pocket.
Remember also that you need to be realistic. A facelift surgery may not be appropriate if you
- Have deep creases in your forehead
- Want to change the size or shape of your nose
- Lift sagging eyebrows
If these are your anti-ageing concerns, you may want to consider some alternatives.
It’s important to note that you do need to tick certain boxes for plastic surgery in order to be considered a candidate. Remember, it is a surgical intervention so standard guidelines would apply. Ideally you should be a non-smoker, generally healthy and not suffer from any unmanaged or chronic health conditions before having any plastic surgery.
If you still have questions about ‘is a facelift worth it’, your next step would be to discuss your individual risk factors with a plastic surgeon. Please contact us for a confidential appointment: (02) 9158 6375.