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Preparing For Your Facelift

Dr. Philip Miller

June 28, 2022

A facelift is one of the best options to turn back the clock and reduce your perceived age. However, this surgical procedure does require some preparation to ensure a safe and successful process. 

Check with your primary care physician to make sure you are healthy enough for surgery if older than 50 years old or if you have medical problems. You can also work with your facial plastic surgeon to address your questions and concerns before your procedure. Finally, there are steps to prepare your skin, face, and body for what lies ahead. 

Philip J. Miller, MD, FACS, is a double board-certified facial plastic surgeon who specializes in procedures to enhance the face and neck. With a variety of techniques at his disposal, Dr. Miller is qualified to customize your facelift to ensure the most natural, beautiful results. His proprietary NatraLook® process is an enriching experience through which you explore and ultimately boost your aesthetic confidence by enhancing your appearance.

1. Prepare Your Body

Any surgery has associated risks, including bleeding and infection. While you can greatly mitigate your risks by working with an experienced facial plastic surgeon like Dr. Miller, there are also steps to take to ensure a low potential for complications. 

First, check with your primary care doctor to ensure you are healthy enough for surgery. You may need to address any underlying conditions before undergoing your facelift. If you smoke, Dr. Miller recommends quitting at least two weeks before and after surgery to prevent nicotine-related risks.   

2. Prepare Your Medication List

Some medications can increase your risk for bleeding or other complications during and after surgery. You may need to stop some of those medications before surgery, so make sure your surgeon knows about all prescription medications you are taking. Your surgeon will weigh the benefits and risks of remaining on certain medicines and provide you with specific instructions to ensure the safest surgery possible.

3. Lower Your Bleeding Risk 

Prescription medications like blood thinners are not the only substances that can increase your bleeding risk during and after surgery. Some over-the-counter medications, such as aspirin and ibuprofen, can also increase your likelihood for complications. Even supplements like vitamin E and fish oil can be a concern. Provide a list of these substances to your surgeon before your facelift and follow all instructions on when to stop taking them.

4. Arrange for Transportation

Since you will have anesthesia for your facelift, you should plan to enlist some help for the first day or two. Arrange for someone to drive you to and from your facelift procedure, since you will not be able to drive after anesthesia. It is also a good idea to have someone stay with you the first 24 to 48 hours after your surgery so you can focus on resting and healing from your procedure.

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5. Prepare Meals

Although you might not feel like cooking for the first few days after surgery, it is essential to eat healthy meals during your recovery to support your healing process. Many patients prepare and freeze meals before surgery to make healthy eating as easy as possible. It is also helpful to stock up on fresh produce and other healthy snacks so you can rest comfortably at home with a full fridge and pantry. 

6. Arrange for Child and Pet Care

You will have some activity restrictions after a facelift that can make it difficult to care for young children or pets for the first week or two. For example, you will not be able to lift items that weigh more than 10 pounds for a few weeks. We recommend lining up help for those first couple of weeks to ensure everyone is cared for without compromising your recovery process.

7. Prepare for a Comfortable Recovery

While patients are often pleasantly surprised at how little discomfort there is after facelift surgery, you will still want to rest and recover in comfort for the first week or two. You can facilitate your healing process by filling prescriptions before surgery. You can also stock up on movies and reading material, or line up someone to clean your house. Finally, gather a few shirts that button in the front to make it easy to change clothes during your recovery process.

8. Drink Extra Fluids

Hydration offers numerous benefits after surgery, from flushing the anesthesia out of the body to keeping the digestive system running efficiently. To help the healing process, keep yourself hydrated by drinking plenty of water throughout the day. Consider having some fresh fruit on-hand, such as limes and lemons, to help make your water taste better so you will drink m

9. Prepare Your Finances

A facelift is considered a cosmetic procedure that is not usually covered by insurance. This means the full cost for your procedure will come out of your pocket. It is important to have a plan for paying for your surgery before you come in for your procedure. We are happy to discuss options with you to ensure your facelift fits with your aesthetic goals and your budget. 

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10. Know What to Expect

While a facelift is ultimately designed to enhance your appearance, you will experience some side effects after surgery that will keep you from seeing your final result right away. In other words, expect to look worse before you look better. Being prepared mentally and physically for the healing process will help you endure those early days when you aren’t so sure about what you see in the mirror. Rest assured that in time, those results you dreamt about before surgery will become a reality.

Dr. Miller has performed countless facelifts during his two decades of work for many happy patients. If you want to find out if a facelift is right for you, contact Dr. Miller’s Manhattan, New York, or New Orleans, Louisiana, office today.

Dr. Philip Miller

Focusing exclusively on the face for more than two decades, double-board certified facial plastic surgeon Dr. Philip Miller blends art and science with innovation and skill to provide thousands of patients with impeccable results. He is known for pioneering the NatraLook methodology for rhinoplasty, facelifts, neck lifts, and other cosmetic procedures for the face.

Settle for Nothing But the Best Facial Plastic Surgery

Facial Plastic Surgery

Dr. Philip Miller and his team of New York's top rated facial plastic surgery experts provide custom cosmetic treatment plans that include a combination of minimally-invasive techniques and advanced procedures, to help each patient achieve the Aesthetic Confidence® they desire. Our unique NatraFace™ approach to facial rejuvenation includes the following effective procedures:

Eyelid Plastic Surgery

Dr. Miller and Kaylyn Plum, PA-C provide patients with Manhattan's #1 customized care and treatment for smooth, supple skin that brightens the eyes and revitalizes the face. With our NatraFace™ approach, we utilize a combination of effective aesthetic techniques tailored to suit each patient’s needs. We offer:

Rhinoplasty (Nose Jobs)

Dr. Miller and his staff of NYC's best aesthetic specialists offer the NatraNose® process, which is a comprehensive range of minimally-invasive and advanced techniques to achieve natural-looking rhinoplasty results, improve nasal function, and meet the patient’s aesthetic goals. Dr. Miller specializes in nose jobs, nose reductions, non-surgical nose jobs, and more: Adjust the links in these sections as follows:

Skin Care Treatments

Widely acclaimed for our broad range of flawless skincare solutions, Philip J. Miller, MD, FACS and his team of aesthetic specialists offer customized skincare treatment plans to achieve healthy, natural-looking results. As part of our NatraLook™ process, the following procedures may be performed individually or in combination with more advanced surgical treatments for optimal rejuvenation.

Services >

Aesthetic Confidence®

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The Plastic Surgery Podcast with Dr. Philip Miller

Tune into The Plastic Surgery Podcast, hosted by facial plastic surgeon Dr. Philip Miller. Dr. Miller is here to answer your questions, de-mystify plastic surgery, and help you feel more knowledgeable and empowered about any procedure performed at our center.

The Plastic Surgery Podcast

  • Episode 44: My First Time

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  • Episode 43: Top 10 Reasons Not To Get A Rhinoplasty ( Plastic Surgery)

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  • Episode 42: Osteomas & Lipomas

    11 min
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Plastic Surgery w/ Dr. Miller

Plastic Surgery w/ Dr. Miller

If you're thinking about getting a lift, nip, or tuck, this app is for you. It's the most comprehensive pocket encyclopedia of plastic surgery terms, before and after photos, and visualization tools to help you really know what to expect from a procedure, including seeing potential results on your own photo. This app is only available on the App Store for iOS devices.

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