A facelift (rhytidectomy) is a surgical procedure designed to smooth and firm the skin, providing a fresh, youthful facial appearance.
Throughout people's lives, exposure to the sun, stress, gravity and other factors cause the skin to sag and hang more loosely. Areas of the face and neck, particularly around the jaw line, are especially prone to the aging process.
Though these changes are gradual, wrinkles and other signs of aging can make people feel older than they really are. In South Dakota, Western Nebraska, North Dakota, and Eastern Montana, many people seek the facial surgery expertise of the surgeons at Black Hills Plastic Surgery.
Reasons for considering a facelift
Facelift patients are usually age 40 or older, but the procedure can be performed any time signs of aging begin to appear. Though the reasons are personal and varied, many people consider facelift to correct any combination of the following conditions:
- Sagging skin, muscles, and fat in the face and neck
- Excess skin and fat on the neck
- Sagging jaw line
- Crease lines along the nose, mouth, and chin
For many patients, rhinoplasty, eyelid surgery, or other facial plastic surgery procedures can complement their facelift results.
A surgical facelift involves the contraction and realignment of facial and neck skin, and in some instances the removal of excess fat deposits. The standard facelift procedure commonly involves making small incisions just inside the hairline, following the contour in front of the ear, and continuing under the earlobe to the backside of the ear and to the lower scalp.
Tissue and fat deposits are separated, the skin is stretched and tightened, and any excess skin is removed. If the neck line requires attention, an additional incision is made under the chin and the same procedure is again followed. Minuscule stitches are used to close the incisions and to reduce any chance of scarring. Metal clips or staples may also be utilized at the hairline.
A facelift may take several hours or longer depending on whether other cosmetic procedures are completed at the same time. Sometimes other procedures may be performed in separate appointments. There are several different facelift techniques that can be employed. When you come in for your consultation, you can discuss with your surgeon which method is best for you.
Immediately after a surgical facelift, the face is fitted with bandages in order to decrease the recovery time and to reduce swelling. Generally, post-operative instructions call for plenty of rest and limited movement in order to speed up the healing and recovery process. The stitches, clips, or staples are normally removed within a week.
Patients sometimes report some minor pain associated with facelift surgery. Any discomfort can be treated effectively with oral medication. While complications are rare, patients can minimize potential problems by carefully following the directions we give to you after the procedure.
Nose surgery (rhinoplasty) is a procedure to reshape the nose in order to create a more pleasing look and, in some instances, to correct severe breathing problems. With approximately 400,000 operations performed each year, nose surgery is considered one of the most popular cosmetic procedures in the United States. We perform rhinoplasty for patients from South Dakota, Western Nebraska, North Dakota, and Eastern Montana who want to achieve a better facial balance and enhance their overall appearance.
Adults, as well as adolescents whose facial growth is complete, can choose nose surgery for a variety of reasons, including:
- Bringing a better proportion to the nose and facial features
- Reducing the size of a nose that is too large or too wide
- Correcting an overly arched or Roman nose
- Reforming a crooked or elongated nose tip
- Restoring the nose if damaged from an accident or sports injury
- Correcting breathing problems by rebuilding the nasal passage
Note: If rhinoplasty is being utilized to correct a breathing problem or nose deformity, the procedure may be covered under your insurance policy.
Rhinoplasty usually involves reducing the size of the nose by removing and sculpting the nasal tissues in order to enhance the facial appearance. The results are unique to each individual and depend upon such factors as skin condition and thickness, nasal and facial structure, genetic contributions, and age.
The rhinoplasty procedure lasts from one to three hours. Your surgeon may elect to utilize either local or general anesthesia, depending upon the complexity of the operation. To begin the surgery, tiny incisions are made that allow the surgeon to access the underlying nasal structure. Once the skin is opened, the cartilage and bone are reshaped to form the basis for the new look.
Generally, post-operative instructions call for plenty of rest and limited movement in order to speed up the healing process and to reduce the recovery time after nose surgery. Some swelling may be noticed; however, it will disappear within a few weeks. A splint, bandages, and/or gauze are applied immediately following surgery to aid in the healing process and to minimize movement of the nose.
Patients must refrain from smoking for several weeks before and after their surgery. In addition, any corrective glasses that are worn must be taped up and off the nose. The nose will need to be well-protected from the sun for the first year after the procedure while the body is adjusting to the new look.
Patients sometimes report minor pain associated with rhinoplasty surgery. Pain can be effectively treated with oral medication and/or cold compresses. While complications are rare, you can minimize the risk of potential problems by carefully following the post-surgical directions given by your surgeon.
Eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty) is a corrective procedure that can reduce dark circles or bags under the eyes, remove excess wrinkles and provide a more youthful appearance to the eyes.
One of the first things noticed about a person is his or her eyes. During the aging process, wrinkles, lines, and puffiness contribute to a tired or aged appearance. Patients in need of eyelid surgery rely on the expertise of Dr. Mary Snyder and Dr. Robert Schutz at Black Hills Plastic Surgery in Rapid City, SD.
Eyelid surgery can improve any of the following conditions:
- Dark circles or bags under the eyes
- Excessive skin or wrinkles surrounding the eyelids
- Tired appearance or puffiness due to inherited factors
Many eyelid surgery patients have the procedure performed in conjunction with other facial plastic surgery procedures such as facelift or rhinoplasty (nose surgery).
Blepharoplasty involves tiny incisions made in the natural contours around the eyes, which should leave no visible scarring. Your surgeon will usually work on the upper eyelids first to remove any fatty tissue and tighten loose skin. Lower eyelids are completed next to eliminate puffiness and reduce dark circles.
Newer techniques may include BOTOX® Cosmetic injections to firm fine lines and wrinkles. At Black Hills Plastic Surgery, our surgeons will use the latest and most reliable techniques to give you the results you deserve.
Eyelid surgery generally takes about one to three hours and is performed in the surgery center. Having additional cosmetic procedures performed can increase the overall length of the surgery.
Normally, post-operative instructions call for plenty of rest and limited movement in order to speed up the healing process and reduce the recovery time after eyelid surgery. Patients sometimes report minor pain associated with blepharoplasty, which can be treated with oral medication.
While complications are rare, plastic surgery patients can minimize the risk for potential problems by carefully following the post-operative directions given after eyelid surgery. The healing process for this procedure is slightly longer than most other forms of cosmetic surgery; however, the benefits are long-lasting.
Surgery of the ear (otoplasty), helps reduce protrusion of the ear away from the head. Most often, ear surgery is performed on children between the ages of 4 and 14. Ears that stick out are often the source of teasing and ridicule in young children. This teasing can have a devastating effect on the child's psyche.
Otoplasty is not limited to children; it is also performed on older patients. This procedure is appropriate for those individuals with large ears and for those with congenital (birth) irregularities that detract from their appearance.
Additionally, an individual's ears may exhibit abnormal traits due to their genetic makeup or an accidental injury, such as losing an ear or part of an ear. Otoplasty is used successfully for each of these situations. Many patients of Black Hills Plastic Surgery have been pleased with the long-lasting improvements to their appearance offered by ear surgery.
Reasons for considering ear surgery
- Bringing proportion to the face if the ears stick out too much
- Correcting folded ear tips (lop ear)
- Reshaping long or offset earlobes
- Enhancing very small ears or other congenital defects
- Remedying an accidental injury, including the loss of an ear
Ear surgery can also be performed with rhinoplasty, eyelid surgery and facelift procedures for a more comprehensive facial improvement.
Ear surgery is commonly performed under general anesthesia for children and local anesthesia for adults. The standard otoplasty procedure brings the ears closer to the head. Otoplasty begins with an incision hidden in the crease behind the ear. This incision allows the cartilage located behind the ears to be reshaped in order to position them closer to the head. The procedure takes approximately one to two hours, depending upon the extent of surgery.
There are various surgical techniques involved in correcting irregularities other than protruding ears. Feel free to ask your plastic surgeon at Black Hills Plastic Surgery about these techniques during your initial consultation.
After the otoplasty surgery is completed, large bandages will be wrapped around the head. This method secures the ear in place and assists with the healing process. The bandages are usually removed within a week and replaced with smaller dressings. Generally, post-operative instructions call for plenty of rest and limited movement in order to speed up the healing process and reduce the recovery time after ear surgery.
Patients sometimes report minor pain associated with surgery. Any pain can be treated effectively with oral medication. While complications are rare, you can minimize potential problems by carefully following the post-operative directions given by our office.