What is a Thread Lift?

Malcolm Tatum

Thread lifts are a relatively new method that is utilized to help persons achieve a more youthful appearance. The thread lift involves less surgical invasion than a standard face-lift, and also can require less recovery time. Due to the relative simplicity of the procedure and the reduced period of recovery, some people refer to the procedure as a weekend facelift or a lunchtime life.

Some amount of bruising often occurs following a thread lift.
Some amount of bruising often occurs following a thread lift.

A thread lift is not an ideal procedure for everyone. Potential candidates for lunchtime lifts are persons who are exhibit only minimal signs of aging. In general, candidates in their mid-thirties to late forties who have excellent skin tone may reasonably expect to achieve positive results from a thread lift. However, the surgeon must evaluate each candidate before the procedure can proceed.

There are usually a few specific signs of aging that can be minimized by undergoing a thread lift. The most common is to return some level of tone to the middle section of the face, where the skin is beginning to sag. A thread lift can also be used to deal with smaller bags under the eyes that no longer go away after a good night’s rest. If the jawline no longer seems to be as firm and toned as it once was, a thread lift can help restore a more youthful outline to the area.

The basic procedure of a thread lift involves the use of barbed sutures to lift sagging tissues around the eyes, neck and the area between the nose and the corners of the mouth. The barbs that are found on one end of the suture grab and lift the section of skin, while the teeth at the opposite end of the suture help to adhere the outside layer of skin to the underlying tissue. Unlike a traditional face lift, there are no incisions made, and there are no stitches that have to be removed at a later date. As a result, a thread lift will not leave behind the scarring that is relatively common with standard facelifts.

For all the advantages of these weekend facelifts, they are not without some risks. As with any type of surgical procedure, there is some possibility of infection. In addition, many patients will experience soreness and pain for several days after the procedure, as well as some bruising and swelling. Postoperative instructions will include limits on physical activity, pain management, and some diet restrictions for the first week. Generally, the swelling and any bruising will fade within a few days, although some surgeons recommend no facial makeup for two to three weeks after a thread lift.

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