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Plastic Surgery Author: Staff Editor Last Updated: Sep 7, 2017 - 10:06:33 PM

A Tale of Three Facelifts: Which Version is Right for You?

By Staff Editor
Mar 5, 2014 - 4:48:35 PM

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( - Facelift has come to be a general term used to describe plastic surgery techniques that lift, tighten, and smooth the skin of the face and sometimes neck. In fact, there are several different kinds of face lifts and techniques. With so much facelift information floating around the internet and various doctors claiming they use the best technique, how are you supposed to know which facelift version is right for you?

Let's take a look at three versions: the traditional facelift, the mid face lift, and the mini facelift. Experienced Columbus facelift surgeon Dr. Stephen Smith performs all three of these techniques at his practice. All three are able to rejuvenate the face, but which one you select will depend on the concerns you have about the aging you are seeing in your own face. Everyone's skin and facial tissue experiences the years differently, meaning there is no one-size fits all solution.

"The" Facelift

When most people speak of an Ohio facelift, known technically as rhytidectomy, they are talking about this kind facelift procedure. The lower face lift repositions and tightens loose, sagging facial and neck skin. It is ideal for patients who want to leave the jowls to the dogs. The upper portion of the face, including the forehead and around the eyes, remains unaffected.

During the procedure, excess fat and skin are removed through incisions that run from the temple to in front of and around and behind the ear. Once the underlying muscles are tightened, the skin is then redraped and secured with sutures. The seemingly simple act of pulling the skin and muscles up can do the impossible and appear to turn back the years. The results are long lasting, typically providing 10 years of beautiful results after about two weeks of recovery.

The ideal candidate for a facelift in Ohio is in good health. He or she wants to lose the droopy appearance of the face, but has realistic expectations of how much younger they will look. Some elasticity of the skin is preferred. Although there is no "perfect" age for a facelift, the majority of face lift patients are in their late 40s and 50s, a time when the signs of aging start to become the most obvious. However, younger and older patients also can benefit from the cosmetic procedure. For younger patients though, a less extensive version of the procedure may be more appropriate.

Mini Facelift

Dr. Smith often performs the mini facelift in Columbus for younger patients looking to rejuvenate their face. Also frequently referred to as the weekend lift, the mini face lift is less invasive than a traditional facelift. The technique still improves the appearance of the jowls and neckline, but without the same risks, recovery, and facelift cost. Most patients are back to work within 5 to 7 days, half the time it takes to bounce back from a full facelift.

Patients in their early 40s to 50s who have noticed early signs of aging but who do not have the extensive sagging that requires a full facelift are great candidates for a weekend lift. They have only minor looseness around the cheeks, jawline, and neck and would like to receive rejuvenation before their appearance changes too drastically.

A mini facelift takes only one hour to perform. An additional benefit is that general anesthesia is not needed. Local anesthesia and sedation work just fine with this quick procedure. The incisions are much smaller and are often limited to the area just under the earlobe. The amount of scarring resulting from the procedure is reduced significantly when compared to a traditional lift. The smaller incisions also mean a faster facelift recovery.

Mid Face Lift

A mid face lift could also be called a cheek lift because of the area of the face it treats. Unlike a full facelift or mini facelift, the mid face lift in Ohio is designed to correct the effect age and gravity have on the cheek region. With age the youthful volume of the cheeks descends to the lower face, forming unwanted jowls. The area where the fat pads once were is left looking deflated and the flatness contributes to a tired, unhealthy appearance.

The mid face lift is minimally invasive and will help to restore the youthful structure of the cheeks. The results include an increase in fullness and a reduction in the prominence of nasolabial folds. Like the mini facelift, it is often reserved for younger patients with early signs of aging.

Surgery can typically take between one-and-a-half to two hours. Incisions to lift the tissue and cheek pads can be made in one of several locations, including above the ears within the hairline, inside the mouth, or inside or along the lower eyelid. All locations allow any scarring to be well hidden. Initial recovery is about seven to ten days.

Choosing Your Face

Now that you know the difference between these three versions of facelift surgery, you can speak to your plastic surgeon with a deeper understanding of facial rejuvenation. Only a personal consultation will be able to give you the final answer to which procedure is right for you. The cosmetic surgeon will be able to evaluate your facial tissue using his or her expertise and can make recommendations.

For the most honest medical opinion, select a facial plastic surgeon that performs all three face lift procedures. Some surgeons only perform the procedure one way, which may not be the optimal technique to use for your situation. Someone who is able to tailor your treatment to your specific needs will be able to provide the best possible results. Ask to review facelift before and after photos and have him discuss the approach used to see if the procedures are truly customized.

For a Columbus face lift that is as individual as you are, contact Dr. Stephen Smith at Smith Facial Plastics. He is a fourth-generation surgeon with offices in central Ohio. Dr. Smith is fellowship trained under the auspices of The American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. He performs facelift, mid face lift, and mini facelift surgery, in additional to browlift, rhinoplasty, and other popular facial plastic surgery procedures. Call 614-678-7180 at your earliest convenience to schedule your personal consultation, or visit


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