What is a Thread Lift treatment?
A thread lift is a shorter procedure that targets signs of aging on the lower parts of the face and involves subcutaneous placement of threads which achieve the desired skin lift effect. Although the procedure can address eyebrow and cheek sagging, a thread lift is often performed on midface, jowl, and neck-lifting.
What is the goal of a Thread Lift ?
The goal of a thread lift is to reposition skin tissues, thus restoring youthful proportions and appearances to the face, neck, and body. This lifting and tightening is performed by a specialist by inserting a needle into the skin and threading it bi-directionally through the soft tissues of the face, neck or body to grasp to lift and suspend the facial area. Specialist use an appropriate pattern to achieve the desired lifting effect in the targeted areas. The minimally invasive procedure provides immediate results but is mainly performed to encourage new collagen production for the stimulatation of long term results and a youthful appearance in the treated areas.
Technical Methods of a Thread Lift
Prior to treatment, patients will receive local anesthesia in the area where the thread lifting will be performed. A specialist then inserts a pre-threaded needle into the subdermal level of the facial tissues, which is below the visible layer of skin.
New collagen and fibrous tissues form around the thread sutures and continue to hold and tighten the skin tissue. The tissue and collagen growth results in natural healing in addition to growth around the threads in the repositioned areas. This achieves longer results. Remaining threads underneath the skin should not cause any worries as they facilitate new growth. In about several months, through a natural process called hydrolysis, the threads also dissolve completely on their own without leaving residual material. Hydrolysis is painless and simply refers to a chemical breakdown caused by a reaction with water. After the threads have dissolved, the new collagen and fibrous tissues will have formed in the treated areas causing a remaining lifting effect which demonstrates youthfulness to the treated area
Thread Lift before-treatment care
Specialists advice thread lift patients to avoid all alcoholic beverages and discontinue smoking for at least a week prior to their procedure as such activities will cause skin dehydration which will interfere with the anesthetic. All aspirin-based products should also be avoided as it can cause unnecessary bleeding and lead to unwanted complications and side effects.
Thread Lift after-treatment care
Some thread lift patients may experience nausea as a side effect of the applied anesthesia or the procedure itself. The patient can sip small amounts of clear liquids until the symptoms pass. It is recommended, especially if skin tends to swell or bruise, to ice the treated area for 30-minutes 4 to 5 times a day for the first 5 days. Other such recommendations are as follows:
- Limit facial motion for the first 24-hours
- Avoid facial creams or makeup for the first 48-hours
- Do not drink with a straw
- Keep an elevated head ) at a 45-degree angle for 5 to 7 days (including bending lower than heart-level, eat soft foods or drink liquids for 7 to10 days
- Avoid gum chewing for 2 weeks
- Avoid heavy exertion for 2 to 3 weeks
- Avoid pulling or massaging the face for 3 weeks
Advantages and Disadvantages of a Thread Lift
- Short procedure
- Quick recovery time
- Minimally invasive
- Not as effective as other methods
- Does not address excess skin
- Lower success rate
Recovery from a Thread Lift:
A thread lift requires very little recovery time because of its non-invasive nature, but it is still helpful to have a basic idea of the treatment’s aftermath. The following list provides a general scope but you should always consult with your doctor prior to the procedure.
When can I start working again?
This depends on your job type and environment. You should expect to return to work within a day to a week of your treatment, but this will vary from job to job. A job that doesn’t require a lot of activity could be resumed in 1 to 2 days. A more strenuous job or one that requires a lot of movement and activity, such as nursing or personal training, would require more time off.
When can I shower?
You should refrain from washing, wetting, and touching your face or the treated area for at least 12-hours after your procedure. Aftr the instructed time frame, be careful not to massage or scrub the treated area with a washcloth for 3 weeks post thread lift.
When can I resume my regular skin care routine?
You can gently resume a basic wash, dry, lotion routine about 48 hours after your thread lift, but avoid any type of scrubbing, tugging or exfoliation, and check with your surgeon before applying any prescription strength creams or topical medications.
When can I wear makeup?
Makeup may be applied as needed 48-hours after a thread lift. Makeup will aid in covering any treatment bruises.
When can I exercise again?
You can resume light forms of exercise, such as walking, 1 week after the thread lift, but be careful to avoid any exercise that strains the treated area. Weightlifting, for example, should be avoided until you are cleared by your surgeon. Yoga, which requires your head to be below your heart, should be avoided for 7 days.
When can I have sex?
Sex and exercise have similar rules. You can resume light sexual activity about a week after most thread lift procedures but is determined by the area that was lifted. If your thread lift was performed on the buttocks, the wait time will be much longer than a thread lift on the marionette lines. Consult with your doctor for specific guidelines.
When can I go swimming?
You are not advised to wet your face for 12-hours after your thread lift. It is better to wait until the suture site has completely healed prior to swimming. Same guidelines are to be followed for hot tubs and saunas.
Expected Thread Lift Results:
Majority of individuals will notice minor results immediatly after receiving a thread lift. As the face heals, new collagen forms in the treated areas which creates a more visible result. While the results are more long term than some other facial rejuvenation treatments (such as surgical facelifts), the results are temporary and it is necessary to receive maintenance treatments every 6 to12 months, depending on your specific age-reversal needs. Texturized threads will achieve results more instantaneously than the smoother threads; however, it is important to remember that each thread type aims to produce collagen over a longer duration which is the ultimate goal of a thread lift procedure.
Side Effects from a Thread Lift
Most thread lift side effects occur in the first 24 to 48 hours of the procedure and will often quickly subside. Some potential symptoms take a few weeks or possibly even months to resolve. Such potential side effects include infection, bruising, swelling, tenderness, numbness, and slight asymmetry (small unevenness). At times, a suture will be visible just below the skin.