As humans, we unconsciously look for emotional cues in other people’s eyes. You can convey so much about what we’re thinking or feeling in a single glance. You can even smile with your eyes alone, without moving a muscle in your lower face.
However, the downside of having such expressive eyes is that the delicate eyelid skin is often the earliest place for the signs of premature aging to emerge. Puffy lower eyelids and sagging upper eyelid skin can give your eyes a hooded appearance and make people think you are years older than you truly are. A cosmetic procedure called a blepharoplasty, or eyelid lift, can restore the youthful look of your eyelids, and, in some cases, can even improve your vision. Here are the top things you need to know about this surgery.
What Are My Eyelid Surgery Options?
As a highly trained oculofacial plastic surgeon, Dr. Malena Amato offers a variety of ways to improve the appearance of the area around the eyes and eyebrows. If you are considering eyelid surgery, you may wish to get an upper blepharoplasty, a lower blepharoplasty, or both.
An upper blepharoplasty is a good procedure for anyone with sagging or wrinkled upper eyelid skin. Some patients experience such a degree of skin laxity that it even begins to obstruct their field of vision. During eyelid surgery, Dr. Amato makes small incisions through which she can remove excess skin and fat. If necessary, she may also adjust the muscles that support the eyelids, which often begin to weaken with age.
Good candidates for an upper blepharoplasty have loose skin or fat accumulation in the upper eyelids. If you often find your eyes feel heavy at the end of the day, you may wish to consider upper blepharoplasty. You may be qualified to get a lower blepharoplasty if you have persistent undereye bags, prominent dark circles, or a tired appearance regardless of how much rest you get.
What Does Eyelid Surgery Entail?
Both upper and lower blepharoplasty are outpatient procedures performed under general anesthesia or IV sedation. You will be able to go home afterward, but please make sure you have someone to drive you. If you choose, you can combine your eyelid surgery with a complementary procedure such as a brow lift or cosmetic injectables such as Botox to further turn back the clock and enhance your appearance.
Most patients find the recovery process from blepharoplasty surgery is relatively straightforward and pain-free. The most common side effects are swelling and bruising, which you can manage with ice packs. Blurry vision and eyes that feel itchy or dry are also normal, which is why you should not drive for several days after surgery. You’ll also need to avoid strenuous exercise or activities such as bending and lifting for the first two weeks of your recovery period.
How to Minimize Scarring After Eyelid Surgery
Every surgery carries a risk of scarring, but blepharoplasty surgery is associated with some of the most minimal scarring of any cosmetic procedure. During upper eyelid surgery, Dr. Amato is careful to make her incisions along the eyelid’s natural crease. The incisions for lower eyelid surgery are either along the lash line, or hidden within the lower lid. Either way, Dr. Amato makes sure to place the incisions in the most unobtrusive locations possible so they will heal virtually undetectably.
The same thin skin that contributes to signs of premature aging works to your advantage when you are healing from eyelid surgery. Because of the delicacy of eyelid skin, it tends to heal faster and better than other areas of your body. Once your incisions fully heal, your scars from upper blepharoplasty surgery will likely only be visible to people who know what to look for, and even then, only when you have your eyes closed.
Unlike incisions from other types of cosmetic surgery, blepharoplasty incisions also don’t require much specialized post-surgical attention because of how well this part of your body heals. However, you can further minimize the risks of scarring by making lifestyle changes such as quitting smoking, avoiding alcohol, staying hydrated, and eating a balanced diet with an emphasis on protein. You should also follow Dr. Amato’s instructions carefully, including when to return for follow-up appointments.
Schedule Your Eyelid Lift Consultation
As a board-certified cosmetic surgeon specializing in oculoplastic facial procedures, Dr. Amato is happy to talk with you about your blepharoplasty concerns. Contact our Austin office for your consultation.