People who have loose, sagging skin or excess fullness below their chin and in the neck often feel self-conscious about their appearance, especially when that area appears more aged than the rest of their facial features. Maybe someone snapped a picture of you from the side view at a party and you saw a profile that you didn’t like! Many different factors can contribute to these issues, including hereditary traits, the aging process, and excess weight. By undergoing neck lift surgery, your neck contour can be enhanced dramatically by removing hanging skin in the neck and along the jawline and redefining neck muscles that have weakened.
Candidates for a Neck Lift
Patients in good health with realistic goals and no significant aging in the jowl area along the jawline are ideal candidates for neck lift surgery. If your profile does not match your desired neck and jaw contour, then this procedure may benefit you. As with most plastic surgery procedures, it is recommended that patients avoid tobacco-related products if considering this surgery.
The Neck Lift Process
Your cosmetic goals and preferences will determine what techniques are used for your tailored neck lift procedure. Some patients only need liposuction, others desire a lift in their cheeks to provide more balance to the facial structure, and some want a neck lift by itself, so your individual desires and treatment plan will be discussed during your consultation to provide the best results for your facial appearance.
- General anesthesia or sedation is administered. For neck contouring by liposuction alone, three small incisions are made toward the front of the patient’s earlobes and in the crease under their chin. These incisions leave essentially no visible scars, and once the patient has fully recovered, the neck contour is much more youthful. We often use ultrasound-assisted liposuction to remove excess fat to achieve a smoother, tighter result.
- For the neck lift procedure, loose skin in the neck area is removed or redistributed, and muscles are tightened as needed. Incisions are made under the chin and sometimes behind the ear into the hairline. To achieve a long angular neck, it is sometimes advisable to trim the submandibular salivary glands, which often create unsightly bulges below the jaw border.
Bruising and swelling in the neck region can be expected, and should subside within one week. Supportive bandages may be gently applied to support the neck and reduce swelling, and your head should remain elevated and as straight as possible without excess movement. Icing the neck area should be avoided; however, you will be provided with proper post-operative care instructions for your incisions. Surgical drainage tubes are sometimes used for removing excess fluids, which can collect under the skin. If a drain is used, it will be removed the next day. Feelings of tightness and discomfort are common and typically reduce within a few days. Most patients can return to work and regular activities after two weeks of recovery. Medication will be prescribed as needed to ensure a comfortable recovery.
After neck lift surgery, skin laxity is corrected, and the collapsed soft neck muscles are reshaped to a youthful, defined contour. Patients experience an increase in self-confidence and smoother, tighter skin surrounding the neck. Neck lift surgery provides patients with an overall satisfactory youthful appearance with a slender-looking neck.