What to Expect during Your Facelift Recovery & How You Can Help

Mature woman smiling

If you’re planning your facelift, you probably have questions about the recovery process and what you can do to help your body heal. Many people are surprised at just how smooth and quick their facelift recovery time goes.

This guide can help you know what to expect after your facelift and how you can help the recovery process along so you can get back to your normal social and work life as soon as possible.

Your Facelift Recovery Time

It’s important to remember that everyone will recover at their own pace, so don’t try to rush the process or feel discouraged if your facelift recovery isn’t following the same timeline as someone else’s. Generally speaking, though, plan for around 10 to 14 days of relaxing at home and taking time off work and other regular obligations.

For the first two weeks or so after your facelift, expect to have some swelling, bruising and minor discomfort. Many people feel up to applying some makeup and diving back into their social life around the ten-day mark, but you’ll still need to avoid strenuous physical activity.

Around week four, you should be back to your normal routine, and no one should be able to tell you had plastic surgery. Your results will continue to develop over the next several months.

How to Speed up Healing after a Facelift

Although you can’t rush your facelift recovery time along, there are some things you can do to help your body heal more efficiently.

No Smoking

You and your plastic surgeon should have discussed the complications that smoking can cause prior to your facelift, so hopefully you’ve already kicked the habit or at least put it on hold. Avoid smoking for several weeks after your procedure as well to minimize the risk of wound healing complications and to help your body heal faster and more smoothly.

Keep Your Head Elevated

During the initial stage of recovery, try to keep your head elevated as often as you can, including while you sleep. Propping your head up on a few pillows or sleeping in a comfortable recliner can help. This should help to reduce swelling.

Your plastic surgeon might recommend that you wear a special support garment to diminish swelling.

If you have specific questions about how or when to use cold compresses after your facelift, don’t hesitate to give your plastic surgeon’s office a call.

Follow Your Plastic Surgeon’s Guidelines

Your plastic surgeon will likely send you home with specific instructions for your recovery process. Try to follow these guidelines as closely as you can for a smooth, seamless recovery and the best possible facelift results.

These guidelines might include items such as:

  • How to keep facelift incisions and bandages clean
  • Which medications and supplements to avoid and which to take
  • How long to wear a support garment
  • When you can start introducing physical activity back into your routine


What to Expect during Your Facelift Recovery & How You Can Help
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What to Expect during Your Facelift Recovery & How You Can Help
Have questions about your facelift recovery time? Board-certified plastic surgeons Dr. Kolder and Dr. Improta of Camarillo have answers and some recovery tips.
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September 13, 2018
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