How Soon Can You Smile After a Facelift?
A facelift tops most people’s lists of ideal surgeries to rejuvenate their facial contours. However, one of the most significant concerns women and men have when planning for a facelift is taking time away from work and social activities. Though downtime is a reality with a facelift, rest assured it shouldn’t disrupt your life for more than a couple of weeks.
When getting any plastic surgery procedure, your goal should be to preserve your appearance as much as possible – not to look like someone else or achieve unrealistic results. When you trust a board-certified plastic surgeon to do your operation, you can show off your beautiful smile in no time.
Here are some helpful facelift recovery tips to help you prepare for your downtime.
Expect to Look Worse Before Looking Better
Don’t be alarmed by significant facial swelling and bruising. These effects are typical after a facelift, but gradually diminish as you heal. After your surgery, we’ll send you home with dressings covering your face. These will protect your incisions and compress your surgical site to minimize swelling.
Keeping your head elevated during sleep and relaxation will also help with swelling and inflammation. You can use extra pillows or look for specialized pillows designed to lift your head and ensure your incisions are above your chest.
Normal Smiling Should Return After Two Weeks
Though most patients can usually smile as usual after one or two weeks, it takes others as many as six weeks. The full facelift impact will take a bit longer, from six months to a year. However, your natural smile should return in short order.
Lip and mouth asymmetries after a facelift should resolve with time. Facelift surgery often weakens the mandibular nerve, but the risk of permanent injury is low. Dr. Mussat will discuss these concerns with you during your consultation.
Plan on Taking Two Weeks Away From Work
Most facelift patients take two weeks off work after surgery. However, this timeframe may vary due to your job responsibilities and healing process. Some patients return to their routine sooner than two weeks, and others take a few days more. Whatever you decide to do, make sure to get clearance from Dr. Mussat before returning to work.
Resume Normal Activities After Two Weeks
Approximately two weeks after your surgery, you should feel well enough to resume your normal activities, including professional and social obligations. Still, avoid brisk exercise and contact sports that could cause facial trauma. Talk to Dr. Mussat before taking your workout routine up a notch.
Optimal Outcome May Take Six Months or Longer
You will see gradual anti-aging improvements over the weeks and months after your facelift. While you should be able to go out in public and show off the rejuvenated version of yourself at the two-week mark, know that it can take up to six months before you realize your full facelift benefits.
Learn more about facelift surgery with Chicago’s leading female plastic surgeon! Contact us today to schedule a consultation.