Downtime after cosmetic procedures varies from a few hours to several days, depending on the specific procedure and areas treated. Office procedures are performed under local anesthesia, if any anesthesia is required. Surgical procedures are performed with either IV (twilight) sedation or general anesthesia and require a longer recovery period. Anesthesia normally wears off within the first 24 hours after surgery.
Patients wear a gentle, elastic neck wrap to minimize swelling for a several days after surgery. Many patients wear a scarf and glasses to run quick errands outside, until they feel more comfortable in public.
Driving is generally avoided during the first week after facelift surgery because your neck may feel stiff or tight while turning your head initially. Numbness, especially around the ears, is common and normally resolves with time.