Both men and women experience signs of facial and neck aging, with one of the most common areas being the neck. Sagging, loose skin on the neck can lead to self-consciousness and discomfort leading you to wear outfits with high collars in an attempt to camouflage your neck. A neck lift is an effective procedure to correct these signs of aging, taking years off of your appearance. Double board-certified facial plastic surgeon, Dr. Walker, can help make your cosmetic goals a reality with his steady and skilled hands. Walker MD Facial Plastic Surgery is located 19 minutes from Downtown Atlanta and 12 minutes from Brookhaven.
What is a Neck Lift?
A neck lift is a cosmetic procedure done to improve the visible signs of aging on the neck and jawline. There are a multitude of neck lifting techniques with literally a choice for everyone depending on your needs and goals.
Neck lift surgery can treat a number of signs of aging including:
- Loose skin on the neck.
- Excess fat and loose skin in the lower face, resulting in jowls.
- Fatty deposits under the chin.
- Muscle banding in the neck.
Who is a Good Candidate for a Neck Lift?
Men and women who feel they are not ready for a full facelift procedure or that don’t need a facelift but wish to correct the appearance of wrinkling on the neck, jowls, or a double chin can often benefit from a neck lift. Generally, ideal candidates will be adult healthy non-smokers who have realistic expectations for the outcome of their procedure.
A neck lift cannot stop the natural aging process. While you will notice signs of aging as time goes on, they will not be as severe as they would be for someone who has not received a neck lift. The best way to determine if a neck lift is right for you is through a personalized consultation appointment with Dr. Walker.
How is the Neck Lift Procedure Done?
The neck lift procedure is typically performed under general anesthesia on an outpatient basis although certain limited neck lifts may be performed under local anesthesia in the office. Depending on the amount of change you would like to achieve, Dr. Walker may perform a traditional incision neck lift or a limited incision neck lift.
A traditional neck lift incision starts in the hairline near the sideburn and continues down and around the ear, ending in the back of the hairline. Fat in the jowls and neck may be sculpted, and underlying tissue repositioned. The fan-shaped muscle in the neck (platysma muscle) is also often tightened. In some cases, a separate incision will be made under the chin to repair the muscle or to perform liposuction.
A limited incision neck lift involves incisions made only around the ear. While these incisions are smaller and less conspicuous, the results are more limited. At times, no incision is made around the ears and only a submental (under chin) incision is made to tighten the neck bands.
Neck Lift Recovery
Following your neck lift procedure, bandages will be placed around your ears, neck, and face to help minimize swelling and bruising. A small drain may also be placed to collect any excess fluids during recovery. Keeping your head elevated above your heart is important to minimize swelling. Do not apply ice to the neck, since this could negatively affect blood flow, resulting in the compromise of skin tissue. As time passes, swelling and bruising will go down, and you will start to notice your neck lift results.
Clients can typically return to work within two weeks of their procedure, sometimes sooner depending on the extent of surgery, though this may differ from person to person. Be sure to follow the recovery instructions given to you by Dr. Walker to ensure that you heal properly for the best possible results.
After your neck lift in Atlanta, you will be monitored before you are released to go home with a responsible adult who you know. Before your procedure, we will make your follow-up appointments and go over tips to make you feel more comfortable during your recovery process.
Recovery time depends on the procedure performed and your overall health status. In general, all bandages and drains, if present, are removed the next day although the dressing may be left in place for up to three days. Swelling is normal and to be expected, worsening within the first few days, and then improving. You should expect to have bruising, along with some soreness and discomfort, which can be helped by prescription pain medication we prescribe to you prior to your surgery. Bruising usually goes away after about one week, but may persist for up to two weeks.
Your neck will be swollen. The majority of the swelling will subside in the first couple of weeks. However, there can be swelling that can last for several weeks to months. The healing time can take up to several weeks, but once completed, you will look and feel more refreshed being able to wear a ponytail or low-collared shirts with confidence. While significant pain is not a usual part of the recovery process, tightness is expected and continues to improve during the first couple of weeks after surgery. All sutures are removed after 1-2 weeks, at which time most bruising will have subsided. The neck may feel tight for the first few days but softens as time goes by. This should not lead to any difficulty breathing or swallowing. Usual skincare and light makeup may be worn at 10 days after the procedure once the sutures have been removed and incisions have healed. With the exception of overly rotating or extending your neck, normal non-strenuous activities can be resumed after approximately two weeks. Strenuous activities may be resumed 2-4 weeks after your surgery. Please do not resume such activities without Dr. Walker’s permission! Patients flying in for their operation should make arrangements to stay in town for at least 7-10 days. The final facial and neck contours will continue to improve as residual swelling resolves over the first couple of months. Patients can return to work whenever they feel up to it. For some patients, that might be 3 days after surgery; for other patients, it might be after 10-14 days.
We will see you at one month and then every few months afterward to follow your progress and ensure your proper healing. We aim to make every part of your rejuvenation journey as pleasant as possible and are confident you will be happy you trusted Dr. Walker to help achieve your goals.
Schedule Your Consultation
If you are interested in the Atlanta neck lift surgery to achieve a more youthful and vibrant appearance, contact WalkerMD today! Our team will be happy to schedule your consultation appointment with Dr. Walker. This is the first step on your neck lift journey, during which you will meet and speak with Dr. Walker regarding your unique cosmetic goals.