When is it time to consider surgery for my aging face?

How do I know when I am ready for a facelift?

Facial aging has typical signs which develop in everyone and facial plastic surgery is the best correction of aging changes. These include the loosening and drooping of tissue in the brow, face and neck; loss of volume in the face; and changes in the skin surface. Each of these changes happen at different rates for all of us. A facelift, the surgical lifting and repositioning of facial tissues into a more youthful position, is the best correction for loosening, drooping and descent of facial tissues. These changes are typified by the formation of jowls, sagging of the neck, and descent of the midface, contributing to deep nasolabial folds.

While volume loss contributes to and aged facial appearance, no amount of volume replacement can elevate and reposition your face and neck tissue to its more youthful position. Attempts to do so simply result in a puffy, overfilled appearance. When sagging of face and neck tissues is a main area of concern, which may be at a different time point for each individual patient, procedures to elevate tissue are necessary to address these concerns. While there are non-surgical options for elevation of the facial tissues they are all inferior in result and duration to surgical lifting. If you are bothered by drooping of the tissues of your neck and face, consultation with a facial plastic surgeon experienced in facelift surgery is the right step.

How do I know when I am ready for eyelid surgery?

Developing excess folds of skin in the upper eyelids is often one of the earliest signs of facial aging. Many patients first notice this when putting on eye makeup as the skin fold makes smooth application difficult. This issue can show up as early as the mid 20’s and will progress over time. The only effective treatment for these upper eyelid changes is blepharoplasty surgery. Fortunately, recovery is generally easy and many patients are candidates to have the procedure done in the office. The lower eyelids can be more complicated as contour irregularities may develop for either fatty prominence in the lower lids, volume loss in the midface and tear trough area, or both. Correction for these problems may involve surgery or volume replacement. The best time to begin addressing concerns in the eyelid area is when the changes seen bother you.

How do I know when I am ready for browlift?

The brow is an area of rapid transition from thick tissue of the brow to extremely thin tissue of the upper lid over a distance of only a few millimeters. As we age, the brow gradually loses support and descends, just like tissues of the lower face and neck. Even the descent of a few millimeters may place some heavy brow tissue beneath the orbital rim contributing to a heavy, hooded appearance to the eye.

While there are non-surgical methods to gain a bit of brow elevation, surgical browlift yields the most controllable and durable results. Consultation with a facial plastic surgeon experienced in browlift techniques will help you understand to what degree your brow position is affecting your upper facial and periorbital aesthetics. You can then decide together what the best approach for rejuvenating the brow may be for you.

So, when is it time to consider surgery for your aging face?

It is time to consider surgery for your aging face when non surgical options will not get you the result you desire.  There is no specific age consideration.  We’ve had blepharoplasty patients from age 20 to 70 and facelift patients from 30 to 80.  Genetic and environmental differences will result in aging changes faster for some patients.  Also, many patients will choose to have a procedure multiple times in their lifetime, surgical results are great, but we do not stop the aging process.  If you think you might be ready for surgical correction of the face, trust your face to a facial plastic surgeon.  And, if you live in or travel to Atlanta, come see us for your surgical care needs.

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