When Do I Need Blepharoplasty (Eyelid Surgery)?

The time to consider cosmetic eyelid surgery, also known as blepharoplasty, is a personal choice. It is known as a very effective procedure, giving patients a more youthful and rested appearance with little to no side effects. 

When it comes to the aging process, your eyes are the windows to your soul. That’s because your eyelids can exhibit the drooping and wrinkled signs of aging, but inside you may still feel 10-years or more younger than you look. Fortunately, Dr. Edward J. Gross, double board-certified facial plastic surgeon at Primera Plastic Surgery and Med Spa offers his patients a blepharoplasty that can make you look as young as you feel inside.

Why Consider Blepharoplasty?

Dr. Gross says the typical reasons patients seek out cosmetic eyelid surgery is when they feel like their eyes don’t reflect the age that they feel inside. They want to look younger and improve their self-esteem.

Blepharoplasty offers patients a way to cosmetically alter their appearance to look younger. Dr. Gross says, “For instance, they may feel youthful, but they may have an issue with the way their eyes look a little bit droopy and saggy but they want to project an image that is consistent with how they look and feel.” These are the perfect patients for this safe, effective cosmetic procedure.

The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS) reports blepharoplasty is one of the top five cosmetic procedures for men and women, with more than 115,000 performed annually in the United States. It is the #1 procedure for Men at Primera Plastic Surgery. This type of eyelid surgery can treat:

  • Loose or sagging skin around the eyelids
  • Fatty deposits that present as puffy skin
  • Eye bags 
  • Drooping lower eyelids
  • Fine wrinkles and excess skin of the lower eyelids

While the majority of eyelid surgeries are cosmetic, it can also improve eyesight by removing extra drooping skin that impairs the upper portion of your vision.

What Does Blepharoplasty Entail?

Blepharoplasty before and after photos actual patient

This extremely safe and effective surgical procedure seeks to eliminate the extra skin around the eyes that droop and sag as you age. Dr. Gross says, “In terms of the surgery, the blepharoplasty or eyelid surgery for upper and lower eyelids, takes about an hour and a half. It’s done in our confidential and convenient outpatient surgery center.”

The process begins with a thorough examination by your doctor, including a physical exam, eye test, and a thorough history of any health concerns, medications, and allergies. Your goals for the treatment will be discussed and pictures of your eyes will be taken from different angles to help plan the surgical procedure. 

You will have a sedative along with a local anesthetic into the area around your eyes. Sometimes the procedure can be done with other skin-rejuvenating cosmetic approaches, such as a facelift, and general anesthesia may be used.

What is Recovery from Blepharoplasty Like?

Before and after eyelid surgery patient

Dr. Gross says, “A blepharoplasty is a simple outpatient procedure with minimal recovery time to get you back to your life as quickly and safely as possible while helping you to look and feel your most confident.” One study on these types of surgeries points out, “Eyelid skin heals better than almost any other skin on the body.” As a result, the complications from these procedures are quite rare. 

Good candidates for blepharoplasty include patients that are:

  • Healthy with no complicating conditions
  • Nonsmokers

Blepharoplasty patients may have just their upper or lower lids done, depending upon the initial consultation with your doctor and your goals for the surgery. During the surgery, your doctor will cut along the natural eyelid lines to reduce the appearance of scarring. On the lower lid, the doctor may make the incision inside your eye where it won’t be visible. Another technique used could be making the incision along the margin of the eyelash. 

No matter the surgical technique, the goal is to be as non-invasive as possible while removing the extra skin and fat and then closing the incision with tiny stitches. Those dissolving stitches will remain on the upper lids for a week or so and the lower lids may not even need suturing. 

After surgery, your doctor will put ointment in the eyes to keep them moist and cover the area with a cool compress. Someone will need to drive you home and help you get settled. Right after the surgery your vision may be blurry from the ointment or light sensitive.

Dr. Gross now uses a revolutionary breakthrough to speed healing after eyelid surgery, called Lid Lift Goggles. They are similar to ski goggles and are applied after the procedure to apply gentle pressure around the eyes, which minimizes swelling and bruising. black goggles

The eye area will be bruised and swollen for a few days. Staying home with your head elevated, including while sleeping, as well as applying cold packs, will help with the recovery process. The skin around your eyes may look swollen for a couple of weeks, and you should avoid strenuous activity to allow your body the time it needs to heal. 

You should also avoid smoking, rubbing your eyes, and for two weeks or so after surgery do not wear contact lenses. We also recommend keeping the incision out of the sun for several months and if you do go out to wear a hat and sunglasses. The bruising and swelling usually go down after a couple of weeks but any scarring may take months to fade completely.

Should You Consider Blepharoplasty Eyelid Surgery?

Actual blepharoplasty patient before and after photosEyelid surgery is a great way to keep your face looking as young as you feel. The procedure lasts for years and rarely needs repeated. Dr. Gross says, “Typically, patients will come in for an eyelid consultation in their 30s and 40s, since the periocular soft tissues tend to age a little bit faster than the face. Then we might see them back in 10 more years for a mini lift or neck lift.”

The Mayo Clinic points out, “You may decide to undergo blepharoplasty at the same time as another procedure, such as a brow lift, facelift, or skin resurfacing.” This is an important point to consider; you don’t have to settle for the natural process of aging. Cosmetic surgery can change the way you look in very subtle or dramatic ways, depending on the effect you want to achieve. 

Ultimately, the decision to get a blepharoplasty procedure is a personal one; and many patients report the results, and the ensuing boost in confidence they feel, meets or exceeds their expectations.

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