People have different needs, wants and preferences. So, it only makes sense that cosmetic treatments and surgery are available in a range of options. The option that works for you depends on what changes you want done, the degree of aging on your face, and your ability to take time off. For many people, the mini facelift, sometimes called a weekend facelift, is a more viable option than a full facelift or a less invasive procedure such as injections alone. If you’re thinking about a mini facelift, learn more about what it can do for you and if it’s the right choice for your needs.
What a Mini Facelift Corrects
Similar to a full facelift, a mini facelift targets the lower portion of the face. It minimizes sagging or drooping in the area around the chin, jowls and lower cheeks. The surgery is ideal for people who have just a small amount of droop or sagging in that area, as the procedure is too limited to correct a considerable amount of skin looseness.
Who’s a Candidate?
Typically, a candidate for a mini facelift is a younger patient who is just starting to see some droopiness or sagging in the lower part of the face. If you’re in your 40s or 50s, you might be a good candidate for the surgery. Your health also plays a big role in determining if a mini facelift is appropriate for you.
Although it is less invasive than a facelift, a mini facelift is still surgery. You’ll be sedated and given a local anesthestic, but you won’t be fully under. To reduce the risk for complications, your doctor will make sure your health is in good shape before the surgery. If you have an uncontrolled medical condition, such as diabetes or high blood pressure, you might need to postpone surgery until those issues are under control. You’ll also be asked not to smoke for a few weeks before and after surgery and you might need to avoid certain supplements and stop taking certain medications, such as ibuprofen and aspirin, which can increase your risk for bleeding.
Along with being in good health and having the right signs of aging, the ideal candidate for a weekend facelift will also have realistic expectations for the surgery. There are a number of reasons why a person might want surgery, some good and some not-so-good. For example, if you are considering the surgery to take a few years off and to get a more refreshed appearance, your expectations are most likely realistic and able to be achieved. But, if you’re considering a weekend facelift because you are expecting it to somehow transform your life or fix all of your problems, or because you want it to make you look like a completely different person, it’s likely that you won’t get what you want from the surgery.
During your consultation, your facial plastic surgeon will give you a clear idea of what to expect. He can also help you see if your hopes for the surgery line up with what can be achieved.
How It is Different from a Facelift
Aside from being a starter procedure, a mini facelift is different from a full facelift in several ways. One big difference is the cost. A full facelift tends to cost more, both financially and in terms of time. Since a weekend facelift doesn’t require as much time, doesn’t require general anesthesia, and is less involved, it has a lower sticker price.
The amount of time you need to recover after a facelift is considerably longer than the time you need after a mini facelift. It’s been dubbed a “weekend facelift” for a reason. Many patients need just a few days to recover and, at most, a full week. Depending on a number of factors, a patient might need up to two weeks to recuperate after a full facelift. Plus, he or she will need to limit certain activities for even longer after that.
The size of the incisions is also different in a facelift compared to a mini facelift. Facelift incisions tend to stretch from the temples to around the front and behind the ears. The incisions made in a mini facelift are often placed just in front of the earlobe. Since the incisions are so small, any scarring afterwards is typically very minimal.
Results are typically visible more quickly after a mini facelift compared to a full facelift. In the case of both surgeries, bruising and swelling are common. But, in the case of a weekend facelift, that bruising tends to fade and swelling goes down quickly, so that the final results are apparent after just a few days.
Who’s Not a Candidate?
Just as not everyone is candidate for a full facelift, not everyone is cut out for a mini facelift. People who are concerned about the signs of aging but still have taut, firm skin in the jowls and chin area aren’t ready for any type of facelift surgery. If that’s you, you might consider non-surgical treatments such as laser skin resurfacing or injectable fillers, depending on what your specific concern is.
Making the Most of a Mini Facelift
Since a weekend facelift only targets the lower portion of the face, you might be concerned about the signs of aging elsewhere, such as the frown lines near your eyebrows or the lines around your nose and mouth. One way to maximize the results you get from a mini facelift is to combine it with other procedures. Botox injections, for example, can reduce the appearance of frown lines and crow’s feet and can be performed at the same time as surgery. You might also combine your surgery with a chemical peel or laser treatment to improve the texture of your skin as well as any sagging.
A fourth generation facial plastic surgeon in Ohio, Dr. Stephen P. Smith regularly performs a variety of facial rejuvenation procedures. One of his specialties is the mini facelift. To learn more about the surgery and to see if it’s right for you, call (614) 245-4263 to schedule a consultation with Dr. Smith today.