Okay, the months of planning and research have paid off, and facelift surgery is behind you. No doubt you are excited to see your new face and the results you’ve excitedly anticipated. But now is the time for patience because it takes time for recovery and healing. Understanding the recovery process will help you get through these hours, days, and weeks with little to no anxiety.

The First Day

When you wake after surgery, you will be in a recovery room. It is quite possible you will feel cold or nauseated. If you are cold, simply ask for a blanket; if you feel a bit nauseated, inform someone because there are medications that can help. You may also feel emotional, don’t worry, this is normal and will pass.

Expect your face to be tender and tight after you wake from anesthesia. You may also find yourself in surgical bandages that are large and fluffy. This dressing will be temporary and is replaced with an elastic wrap within 24 hours. You may also have drainage tubes to remove excess fluids and reduce swelling. These may remain for a few days.

Most facelifts are outpatient procedures, so, you will need to have someone with you to drive you home. You may also experience mild to moderate discomfort after the anesthesia wears off. Don’t worry, you will have been prescribed medication for pain and should take as directed. Antibiotics will also be prescribed to stave off infection.

The Next Few Days

As a rule, you should be up and active within a few days and can wash your hair after 48 hours.  Some patients stay overnight in a suite and are assisted in washing their hair the next morning.

Swelling and bruising are normal after surgery, and you can expect both during the healing process. Expect a gradual facial swelling for three days after surgery with the swelling diminishing afterward. You will also experience facial bruising so; you should not expect to realize your facelift results for at least two weeks.

Two Weeks After Surgery

You will be released to return to work or your normal responsibilities after two weeks. If needed, you can wear makeup. During these two weeks, it is important for you to walk around at least three to four times daily to promote blood circulation and prevent blood clots. Also, you may not lift heavy objects (including your children) until Dr. Dreyfuss informs you it’s okay.

No steam rooms, saunas or any related steam devices or products used to promote facial flushing. Also, avoid products containing niacinamide and niacin because they too promote facial flushing.

Abstain from alcohol and anti-inflammatory medications like aspirin and ibuprofen until Dr. Dreyfuss allows them.

Some facelifts involve mouth incisions which will restrict your diet. Make sure you understand what you can and can’t eat during recovery before you have surgery. An antiseptic mouthwash may be required for several rinsings daily.


Sleep with your head elevated above your heart for one week. This practice will help reduce swelling. Prop up multiple pillows and place a foam wedge (found in surgical supply stores) under your torso. You may also sleep in a recliner.

Red Flags

Although most facelift procedures experience no complications, all surgeries have some risk. Red flags to look for include:

  • Elevated body temperature
  • Redness
  • Excessive pain

If you experience any of these complications contact Dr. Dreyfuss immediately. For optimal recovery care, monitor your temperature regularly and make sure to take prescribed medications like antibiotics faithfully and as prescribed.

After Surgery Appointments

Expect to come in for your first visit after surgery the day after the procedure. Here, Dr. Dreyfuss may change your bandages. Any sutures to be removed will stay for at least five more days. You will also be encouraged to discuss any concerns at this time if for no other reason but to put your mind at ease.

You will have multiple after surgery appointments to check your progress and administer any necessary post-surgery care. Anything you wish to discuss during these visits is encouraged no matter how trivial or insignificant it may seem. Remember, it’s always better to be safe than sorry.

Enjoy Your Outcome

After a couple of months, you should be ready for primetime. Recovery is different for each patient, so an exact timeline for healing is unique to the patient. But within a few months, you should be ready to show off your revived facial appearance. You will enjoy a big event like a wedding or high school reunion so much more with a young, fresh, and rejuvenated facial appearance.

For more information about Facelift Recovery call Dreyfuss Plastic Surgery at 815-806-9400 or contact us here for a consultation.



Advances in facelift surgery have been known to improve patients’ lives by resolving their cosmetic concerns. However, it’s crucial for the facelift candidate to have realistic expectations about the psychological and aesthetic benefits gained from the cosmetic procedure. Two important factors when you are considering a facelift are your candidature and attainable goals. With the wrong attitude and expectations, the outcome may disappoint you.

No scarring, a fantasy look, and perfect symmetry are common unrealistic outcomes which many patients stress entering the facelift process.

Finding the Right Mindset

Obviously, a facelift performed by a qualified and experienced surgeon can deliver striking results, have a positive impact on your appearance, and boost your confidence and self-esteem. Nevertheless, to assume a perfect outcome would be a great overestimation.

A perfect example is seeking a particular look which is well outside of your facial anatomy. Although improving your unique beauty and a youthful result are possible with a skilled surgeon, expectations outside your facial structure (like the look of a celebrity) does not bode well for your perception of a successful outcome. Also, because responses to surgery are different from patient to patient, expecting the results of other patients is also unwise.

Another problem occurs when patients choose facelift surgery to make them feel better about their lives. Because of some traumatic event or lack of self-regard, they believe a change in their appearance will result in a change in the way they feel about themselves. This way of thinking can be a dangerous precedent. Plastic surgery should not be confused with psychological treatment but rather a form of medicine to enhance your aesthetics, not your total mental outlook.

However, it is certain many patients attain a favorable outcome with emotional benefits. Patients who want to turn back the effects of aging are pleasantly satisfied with diminishing wrinkles and restoring facial volume. Their boost in confidence helps them in their professional and personal lives as well.

Where Lasting Results are Real

One area where a facelift does not disappoint is the permanence of its outcome. Although the procedure does not halt the aging process, it will turn the clock back about ten years in facial appearance.

Temporary treatments like Botox and Dermal Fillers are great facial rejuvenation treatments and have their place in aesthetic medicine, but the results are temporary and need additional injection treatments to sustain desired outcomes.

Fighting the Effects of Aging

Another area where a facelift can help facial aesthetics is in the fight against aging. Facial aging is inevitable, but controlling sagging skin and wrinkles is possible. So, if you are wondering what can be done to turn back the clock on your facial presence, a facelift has benefits you should consider.

However, the procedure will not make you look 18 again. Although you can expect to look a decade younger, many patients want to look like they do in their high school yearbook. This desire is not doable. The purpose of a facelift is to fight the effects of aging gracefully and add beauty and character to your aging process.

So, What Can You Expect from a Facelift?

Great Expectations is not only a novel from Charles Dickens but also a standard where facelift patients often hold their surgeon. However, reality tells us improvement is possible to the face you were born with, but cannot change it into something it is not. So, what benefits can you expect from facelift surgery?

Any patient contemplating facelift surgery should expect:

  • Fresher, tighter, and firmer facial appearance
  • A younger facial presence
  • Improved confidence and self-esteem
  • Diminishing negative effects of sun and wind exposure
  • Diminished wrinkles, lines, and creases
  • Results will be effective for up to ten years

Dr. Dreyfuss expects to deliver these benefits to you and your facial appearance – and you should expect them as well. But, if you dream of a face outside the realm of possibility or expect the procedure to change your entire life, you may not enjoy the benefits of your facelift surgery, but struggle with not achieving the goal that was unattainable.

For more information about what you can expect from a facelift outcome, please call Dr. Dreyfuss at 815-806-9400 to schedule a consultation or contact us here.



It practically takes fighting gravity to treat sagging skin. Of course, sagging skin develops differently depending on where it happens. Do you have sagging skin near the eyes? What about the lower half of your face? What about the neck? There’s no one-size-fits-all procedure for lifting sagging skin on the face, but two procedures, the eyelift and the facelift, happen to be some of the best procedures available. Which one is the right for you? Let’s find out.

Who Should Get an Eyelid Lift?

Drooping eyelids can often make us look older and more exhausted than we really are, and no amount of sleep or rest can fix it. Fortunately, eyelid surgery can tighten the eyelids by removing excess skin and fat pads, leaving you with a younger, more refreshed look.

Here’s when you should get an eyelift:

  • When your upper eyelids droop enough to look unsightly
  • When your eyes look perpetually tired and old
  • When your lower eyelids are constantly puffy
  • When the degree of sagging in your eyelids affects your vision

Who Should Get a Facelift?

The middle of the face is often hardest hit by sagging skin. A facelift can specifically target the middle and lower sections of the face by removing excess skin and sculpting the fat pads in the face. From sagging cheeks, to deep wrinkles and jowls, a facelift can target it all for a smoother face that looks decades younger.

Here’s when you should get a facelift:

  • When you have deep wrinkles by the nose, mouth, and chin
  • When you have sunken cheeks
  • When you want to lift sagging skin in the middle of the face
  • When you want to lift jowls and sagging skin on the neck

A Case for Both

If you want to take care of sagging skin on the upper half of the face, you should get an eyelid lift. But if you want to address signs of aging from the middle of the face down, then a facelift is optimal. But what if you need maximum rejuvenation? In the words of a legendary commercial, “why not both?” Eyelid surgery and facelifts are commonly paired to allow patients to rejuvenate multiple areas at a time.


Whether you’re getting an eyelid lift, a facelift, or both, it’s best you trust your procedure to a talented, experienced plastic surgeon. To work with a talented plastic surgeon, contact Dreyfuss Plastic Surgery now for a consultation on the eyelift and facelift.