For people considering a facelift, rhinoplasty, eyelid surgery, and more at my San Francisco facial plastic surgery practice, recovery times are an important factor to consider. While most people find their years of confidence well worth a few weeks of downtime, it’s essential you know what to expect as you plan your surgery timeline.
In this blog post, I’ll share some insight into the typical recovery times for a few popular facial procedures, as well as a few tips for an even speedier recuperation.
How Long Is Facelift Recovery?
Most people return to work and social activities about 2 to 3 weeks following a facelift. By this time, most bruising and swelling have subsided or can be easily covered with makeup.
During the first week of your recuperation, you may feel some soreness that prescription pain medication typically easily manages. After that first week, many people can comfortably stop taking pain medications or transition to over-the-counter pain relievers.
You can resume light exercise after about 2 weeks, but you’ll need to hold off on vigorous exercise until weeks 4 to 6. While some residual swelling may persist for a bit longer, most people look and feel “back to normal” after about a month. This timeline is slightly shorter for mini facelifts.
How Long Is Rhinoplasty Recovery?
Most people return to office work and school about 7 to 10 days after rhinoplasty.
After 5 to 7 days, any splints or sutures will be removed, and most bruising and swelling will have subsided. You’ll still need to sleep with a splint on to protect your nose.
After 4 to 6 weeks, you can gradually resume exercise and strenuous activities. It’s best to avoid contact sports or other activities that may injure your nose. Minor swelling may persist for up to a year after rhinoplasty.
How Long Is Eyelid Surgery (Blepharoplasty) Recovery?
About 5 to 10 days after eyelid surgery, most people feel comfortable returning to work and their daily activities. While some bruising may last for 2 to 3 weeks, you will likely be able to disguise it easily with makeup.
You can begin to gradually resume exercise 2 to 4 weeks after blepharoplasty. This timeline is roughly the same for upper eyelid surgery, lower eyelid surgery, and Asian eyelid surgery.
Tips for a Faster Facial Plastic Surgery Recovery
To minimize your downtime, follow these tips:
- Consider nonsurgical options. If a few weeks of recovery isn’t realistic for you, ask about nonsurgical alternatives such as liquid rhinoplasty, which you can learn more about in this blog post.
- Stay lightly active before and after your procedure. This will help your body bounce back more quickly.
- Follow all aftercare instructions. Closely follow your surgeon’s guidelines for activity restrictions, wound care, and more.
- Eat a nutrient-rich diet and stay hydrated. Give your body the fuel it needs to recuperate as efficiently as possible.
- Avoid alcohol, smoking, and nicotine products. These can cause additional bruising and affect your body’s ability to heal.
With the proper care, you will be back on your feet with a brand-new sense of confidence before you know it. To see examples of the results you can expect after facial plastic surgery, please visit my before-and-after photo gallery.