Postoperative instructions: Facelift Surgery

It is important to read the general postoperative instruction sheet also. These plastic surgery postoperative instructions or cosmetic surgery postoperative instructions are meant to be as thorough and complete as possible. However please don’t hesitate to call for any questions or concerns!

“Simple Yet Strict”

Recovering from facial surgery can be surprisingly easy. Follow the simple instructions provided by Dr. Saunders. Yet these instructions are strict. They should be followed closely. These instructions are based on decades of experience. Please follow the instructions carefully and maximize your chance of healing uneventfully! No smoking, nicotine patches or nicotine gum until further notice! This is extremely important!

Head elevation:

It is very important to keep the head elevated at all times. This includes sleeping. This can be done in a lounge chair or in bed with multiple pillows. Please maintain at least a 45° angle. Head elevation is important to minimize bruising and swelling and to aid healing.

Chin up:

Please keep the chin up or elevated after facelift surgery. Because of the unique anatomy of the face and neck, the chin up position helps with healing. A chin down position (such as with reading) can lead to bandages cutting into the neck and can also interfere with healing and blood supply. This position is necessary for approximately 3 or four days or until Dr. Saunders says it can be discontinued.

Rest and relax: “Whisper”

The word “whisper” is trying to convey a concept. The face heals best in an atmosphere of calm and relaxation. Many activities can lead to elevation of the blood pressure in the head and increase bruising and swelling. This can delay healing. Any type of bearing down can lead to increased blood pressure in the head. Please avoid straining, lifting, loud speech, and of course yelling and screaming. Although not easy, please avoid coughing, sneezing, or nausea and vomiting. In general, try and rest and relax to promote healthy healing, minimize problems and to speed resolution of bruising and swelling.

Icing of face:

Dr. Saunders recommends icing of the face and neck area for approximately 72 hours or three days. Please use reusable ice packs or gel pads that can be purchased at most drugstores. Ice the area as much as you can. Continual icing is best if possible. Please do not use methods such as frozen peas or frozen steaks, as these are not hygienic.


Please do not change or disrupt the bandage. Expect some staining or spotting with blood.

Dr. Saunders cell phone number 302-584-8407

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