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How Long Should Swelling and Numbness Last After a Facelift?

Middle Aged Woman

Since the facelift procedure is customized to address each patient’s unique needs, the recovery will vary depending upon the techniques used by the surgeon. Mild swelling and bruising should be expected after surgery, and isolated areas of facial numbness are not uncommon. However, most patients report discomfort instead of pain after the facelift procedure, which can be easily managed with oral pain medication.

Within a week of surgery, postoperative swelling and bruising should begin to dissipate. Once the stitches are removed 5-6 days after the procedure, bruising and swelling should continue to subside. Most patients feel comfortable returning to work 7-10 days after their facelift, and makeup may be used to camouflage any residual bruising.

In regard to numbness, most patients will not experience any loss of sensation. Patients who do have postoperative facial numbness can expect normal feeling to gradually return in 1-3 months as the nerves regenerate. A tingling of the skin typically signals nerve growth and may precede the full return of feeling.

For more information about facelift surgery and the recovery process, or to schedule a consultation with our double board-certified facial plastic surgeon, please contact us today.