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What to Expect From a Neck Lift

Preparing for Your Neck Lift

Your surgeon will tell you to avoid certain medications before your surgery to reduce the risk of excessive bleeding.

Tell your doctor about any drug allergies you have. Although it's very rare, you could have an allergic reaction to the anesthesia.

If you smoke, you will need to quit for at least four weeks before the surgery and four weeks after. Don't just plan to cut down. Not smoking for this time period is necessary for proper healing.

Eat a healthy diet. That will help your body heal.

You should plan to take at least one week off from work. Ask your doctor exactly how much time off you'll need.

Set up an area in your home for recovery. The area should have:

  • Ice packs
  • Gauze and towels
  • Thermometer
  • Supply of comfortable, loose clothing (preferably button-down shirts or blouses that do not have to be pulled over your head and neck)
  • Petroleum jelly and antibacterial ointment
  • Telephone within reaching distance of where you'll be lying or sitting most of the time
  • Pillows that will allow you to keep your head in a comfortable position
  • Someone who can stay with you at least the first 24 hours after surgery

On the day of surgery, wear loose, comfortable clothing. Wear a button-down blouse or shirt that you don't have to pull over your head and neck.

Side Effects and Complications of Neck Lift Surgery

You will have swelling and bruising that can last for several days after a neck lift. You may feel tightness or tingling and different sensations, including burning or pulling. You also will experience numbness. These are all normal in the first few weeks following surgery and should not be cause for concern.

As with any surgery, infection is possible. Take your temperature. At the first sign of a fever, contact your doctor. If you have unusual discharge, such as pus, from the surgery site, contact your doctor immediately.

Recovery From a Neck Lift

Recovering from a neck lift takes time. Most people can return to work in 10 to 14 days.

If you participate in sports or are physically active, you will have to wait three weeks or more to resume those activities. Give yourself time to heal to get the most benefit from the procedure.

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