There might come a time in your life when you aren’t happy about the way your face is aging, but are also unsure about what to do about it. For example, fillers or Botox work to treat wrinkles and lines, but aren’t effective when it comes to treating loose skin. But, you might not have enough skin laxity to justify a full facelift or other surgical procedure. In either case, a mini cheek lift might be the best option for you.
Sometimes called an S-lift or mini facelift, a mini cheek lift is designed to rejuvenate the face by reducing loose, sagging skin the jowls and cheeks. The incisions made during a mini cheek lift are considerably smaller than the incisions made in a full facelift. The procedure doesn’t tighten a lot of skin or remove a considerable amount of fat. Recovery time after a mini cheek lift is often shorter than after a facelift, but is still a necessary part of the process.
Read on to see if you might be a good candidate for the mini cheek lift.
You Have Some Signs of Aging
A mini cheek lift won’t benefit people who don’t yet have any signs of aging. You need to have some looseness in your skin to benefit from the surgery. A facial plastic surgeon can let you know if you have enough laxity to benefit from the surgery, or if another procedure, whether it’s a full facelift or a non-surgical option, is better for you.
Your health might be the most important consideration when you’re thinking about a mini cheek lift. Although the surgery is quick and less invasive that most other facial plastic surgery procedures, it is still surgery. There are several conditions and habits that can quickly make you not a good candidate for the surgery.
For example, if you are a smoker, you’ll need to quit for several weeks before the procedure and avoid cigarettes or other products that contain nicotine for several weeks afterwards. Smoking reduces blood flow, which increases your risk for complications.
Some medical conditions, such as diabetes and hypertension (high blood pressure), also increase your risk for complications during surgery. If you have either condition, you’ll want to make sure they are well controlled before your procedure.
Even if you believe yourself to be perfectly healthy, having a full medical exam before surgery is always a good idea. Your surgeon will most likely require it. Depending on your age, you might need a number of tests performed as well, including a full blood count and an EKG.
Medications, even over-the-counter herbal supplements, can interfere with the surgery or increase your risk for complications. Tell your surgeon about any medicines you take, even vitamins and herbs. Your surgeon might recommend changing your dose, switching to a different type of medication, or avoiding that medication (such as Vitamin E, aspirin and ibuprofen) in the weeks before your surgery.
You’ve Had a Full Facelift and are Looking for a Touch-Up
While younger patients who have not had any plastic surgery before are often directed towards the mini cheek lift, they aren’t the only patients who benefit from it. If you’re older and have had a facelift in the past, you might benefit from a mini procedure as a touch-up.
Facelift results aren’t permanent, although they are long lasting. As your face continues to age, you might notice some new sagging in the cheek and jowl area. A mini cheek lift can reduce the sagging and keep your face looking refreshed and youthful.
You Have Realistic Expectations for Results and Recovery
Finally, you’re a good candidate for a mini cheek lift if you have realistic expectations about what your results will be like and how your recovery will go. Although the surgery is short and the incisions are small, you will need to take some time off to recuperate afterwards.
The typical recovery can take anywhere from five to seven days. During that time, you might have some swelling and bruising in the facial area and might not want to see people. While you can go back to work after about a week, you’ll want to wait at least two weeks before you start working out again.
As far as expectations go, it’s important to remember that the goal of the mini cheek lift is to take a few years off of your appearance. The surgery doesn’t change who you are and won’t dramatically change the way you look.
If you aren’t happy about the signs of aging on your face and would like to know about your options for reducing them, speak to a board certified “aging face specialist” today. At the Naderi Center, Dr. Jessica Kulak is a board certified facial plastic surgeon who specializes in procedures that rejuvenate the aging face. To schedule a consultation with her at the practice in Virginia, call 703-481-0002. For a consultation in Maryland, call 301-222-2020.