Some may think that facelifts are only for people in their fifties or sixties, but that is a common misperception. In fact, the patients who often get the best results are the younger patients in their early forties. In general, the younger you are, the more natural the result and the longer lasting the results will be. The skin is more elastic and heals more quickly at a younger age.

Why would someone in their forties need a facelift? Several factors can lead to premature aging of the skin at this age with the most common being sun exposure, cigarette smoking and genetics. While genetics cannot be controlled, the other two can. Many of the changes associated with aging can be corrected with facial surgery.

The surgery takes place in an outpatient setting with the procedure being performed through an incision starting at the hairline or above and in front of the ear. The skin and fatty tissues are then lifted off the underlying muscle and fascia (connective tissue) as far forward as is necessary to correct the loose skin problem. The incision is then closed with sutures and skin staples.

Pain and discomfort after surgery are minimal. There is some discomfort but this is usually controlled with mild pain medications. Once the dressings are removed after approximately 3-5 days, the patient can resume social activities using makeup to cover bruising and hair over the ears to hide the sutures.

Facial surgery will turn back the hands of time but it will not stop the aging process. The signs of aging usually return in seven to ten years, but patients will still look younger than if they had not had the procedure done.