Summary: I often see patients who are interested in the rejuvenating effects of a facelift but suspect that they are “too young” for a facelift. While facelifts have been used for decades to restore a younger appearance to men and women experiencing moderate to advanced signs of age, the average age of facelift patients has actually risen in recent years. However, as with all cosmetic procedures, an individual approach must be taken to truly understand when a facelift is an appropriate option.
Facelift Patients Are Getting Older
In general, it is not as common today for 40-year-old patients to undergo a facelift as it was 20 years ago. This is because we now have a much better understanding of the causes of premature aging and how to avoid them. Smoking is not as popular as it was in past decades and we are now aware of the damaging effects of unprotected sun exposure. This means that people today are more conscious of their skin health and can prevent a certain amount of premature aging. In fact, today’s average 40-year-old looks younger than the average 40-year-old did 20 years ago.
Planning for a Facelift
While we can do our part to prevent premature aging with our lifestyle habits, at some point, aging is inevitable. When that time comes, men and women can analyze their appearance and determine if a facelift can address the ways in which their face has aged. Rather than thinking of a facelift as the right procedure for a certain age, patients should think of it in terms of signs of facial aging. For example, individuals with drooping skin around the jowls, neck and cheeks, deep wrinkles around the nose and mouth, and a fallen or sunken look to the sides of the face can benefit from a facelift regardless of chronological age. In this regard, there is no technical reason that someone who exhibits these signs of aging can be “too young” for a facelift.
Preventing Aging in its Early Stages
However, patients today have a much wider realm of options for facial rejuvenation than facelift patients did in the past. Aside from healthier lifestyle habits, today’s men and women have the advantage of a variety of nonsurgical options for restoring a younger appearance while facial aging is still in its earlier stages:
- Chemical peels can reverse environmental damage caused by sun exposure, provide a smoother skin texture, reduce uneven pigmentation, and minimize fine lines. Chemical peels are customized for each patient’s skin needs, making them an excellent option at any age.
- BOTOX® can relax the facial muscles that cause dynamic wrinkles while injectable fillers can reduce the appearance of deep scars, restore lost volume and reduce creases in certain parts of the face.
- Ultherapy® can non-invasively lift the skin and tone the skin, improving sagging skin in the brow, cheeks, lower face, and neck as well as reducing wrinkles around the mouth and eyes. The procedure can deliver similar results as a facelift for patients who want a more subtle improvement or a less invasive procedure with no downtime.
In addition to the above procedures, using medical grade skin care products can help men and women maintain a young and healthy facial appearance. By keeping premature aging at bay, patients may find that a facelift is simply not necessary for many years to come.