When undergoing any surgery it is important to be well versed on recovery time. Patients should know how long they will be out of work, and how long it will take them to fully recover from surgery. Most neck lift patients are outpatients and will be released about two hours after surgery. Either way, depending on how long it takes you to recover from the Anesthesia (local or general) you will need to plan to have someone drive you home.
Neck Lift Recovery Time
Recovery time really depends on exactly what procedure you get and how your body responds to the surgery.
Right after surgery your neck may feel tight and sore, and you may be emotional and cold. You may also feel nauseas, typically if your neck lift was performed using general anesthesia. Medications will be available to help control your nausea. You may have mild to moderate discomfort in which you should take painkillers your doctor will have prescribed to alleviate this pain.
Patients may feel numb near the incision, as well as feel a change in how their face moves, tingling, sharp pains, burning, or cold sensations. Swelling and bruising are common after neck lift surgery but typically go away a few days after surgery. The numbness will also go away somewhere within the first six months post surgery.
Neck Lift After Care
After surgery, it is most important to keep your head and neck still. If you have to turn to look at something you should turn your whole body, not just your head. You may also need to adjust your sleeping style. You will need to sleep with your head elevated for one or two weeks. Sometimes patients find it easier to sleep on a recliner instead of stacking a few pillows behind their head, whatever is most comfortable for the patient.
Patients should avoid doing too much too soon, but should try to get up and walk around a couple of times a day. This will help with circulation and reduce the risk of DVT (deep vein thrombosis). DVT occurs when a blood clot is formed in a vein in the body and blocks blood flow, resulting in swelling and pain.
Activities that should be avoided the first couple of weeks after surgery include, heavy lifting, strenuous activity, and exercise. Patients should avoid alcohol, aspirin and ibuprofen for up to a week after surgery. In the days after surgery patients should expect to have postoperative appointments with their surgeon where their dressings may be changed. Patient sutures will most likely be removed seven to ten days after surgery.
Neck Lift Scars
After undergoing neck lift surgery, scars tend to be short and concealed underneath the patients chin. Depending on the neck lift technique used, scars will vary, but are typically easy to conceal. If you scar easily discuss this with your surgeon and see what you can do to minimize scarring.
Neck Lift Red Flags
Signs that indicate you should see your surgeon include excessive pain, redness and pus at your incisions. Pus and redness can be signs of infection and should be treated immediately. Make sure you take your antibiotics on time and for the correct amount of days as they were prescribed to reduce the risk of infection. It is also good to take your temperature regularly as a fever is another sign of infection.
Back to work
Recovery time varies from patient to patient, but for the most part, patients will be able to return to work within the first two weeks following the date of their surgery. This all depends on the type of neck lift surgery the patient received. On average recovery takes two to four weeks.