Plastic surgery of the eyelids, also known as Blepharoplasty is performed to remove excess skin and fat from both the upper and lower eyelids. This is a surgical procedure that can be done under local anesthesia for the upper eyelids in some cases. Lower eyelid surgery and sometimes upper eyelid surgery needs to be sedated under general anesthesia in order to receive an optimal result and avoid complications. Eyelid surgery is effective for making puffy, baggy, tired eyes look more youthful and awake. It can help improve vision in older patients who have hooding of the upper eyelids. As skin ages, it gradually loses its elasticity. A lack of elasticity plus the constant pull from gravity causes excessive skin to collect on the upper and lower eyelids.
Types of Eyelid Surgery: Upper and Lower
There are two types of eyelid surgery, upper and lower. These can be done together or separately depending on the patients symptoms and their desired effect. In both instances, the surgeon first marks the individuals natural lines and creases of the lids in order to keep the scars as invisible as possible along these folds. At both sites an incision is then made, excess fat is removed or repositioned, and then the loose muscle and skin are removed. Fine sutures are used to close the incisions, thereby minimizing the visibility of the scar. After eyelid surgery, you will have stitches in both lids that will remain for as long as a week. It is common to have swelling and bruising that can last a few weeks. Insurance does not generally cover surgery that is done purely for cosmetic reasons.
Who are Ideal Candidates for Blepharoplasty?
When you live close to so much water as we do in the New York/New Jersey area, most of us spend or surely have spent lots of time at the shore. This takes a toll on the thin skin on our eyelids and surrounding our eyes. Sun damage and the slackening of the tissues that comes with time aren’t kind to our eyes.
Truth be told, just about all of us over the age of 40 could benefit from eyelid surgery with Dr. Smith. This applies to both women and men, as well; this aging doesn’t show favoritism by sex. Our eyes can affect the perception of our facial age because most people say the eyes are the area of the face they notice first when meeting a new person. Sagging eyelids and puffy areas around our eyes make us look older.
Good candidates for blepharoplasty still have good tone in their facial muscles and tissue. Most candidates are 40 or older. Only people with eye diseases are not able to have eyelid surgery, at least until their condition has been addressed.
What are the Benefits of Blepharoplasty?
What are the benefits of looking about a decade younger? What are the benefits of successfully competing with younger counterparts at the office? What are the benefits of looking in the mirror every morning and not seeing the sagging eyelids, wrinkles, and overall tired look of your eyelids and the surrounding tissues?
Dr. Smith feels eyelid surgery is one of the most satisfying cosmetic procedures because it delivers dramatic results — taking a decade off your facial age — but it does so subtly. We often hear from patients who say they have friends or co-workers who comment that they look somehow more alert and refreshed, but they have no idea the person has had eyelid surgery.
These are very effective procedures. That’s why every year blepharoplasty is in the top five most performed cosmetic surgeries worldwide.
How does Dr. Smith Perform Eyelid Surgery?
Dr. Smith performs these surgeries on the upper or lower eyelid separately, or as a single surgery covering both. With those variances, the procedure can take anywhere from 45 minutes to two hours. These surgeries demand precision and expertise, and you’ll benefit from Dr. Smith’s board certification and extensive training and experience.
This is a delicate surgery that uses small incisions to gain access. On the upper eyelid, a small incision is made in the natural crease of the eyelid. This conceals any visible scarring. Muscles are tightened as needed, fat is repositioned, and excess skin is trimmed. Unless there is an abundance of fat, the fat is repositioned rather than removed. Dr. Smith is careful when it comes to removing fat. He strives for a completely natural looking rejuvenation. You’ve probably seen procedures performed elsewhere that removed too much fat, leaving the person with a hollow appearance around his or her eyes.
On the lower eyelid, Dr. Smith places the incision just below the lower eyelash or sometimes within the inside of the eyelid. This depends on the patient’s eyelid characteristics. Additional excess skin may be removed on the lower eyelid if it is causing puffiness and excessive wrinkling beneath the eye.
Is Eyelid Surgery Painful?
Obviously, you’ll feel nothing during the procedure. Recovery is not overly painful, either. As mentioned above, recovery from eyelid surgery is not overly difficult for our patients. Dr. Smith will prescribe pain medication, but most people feel over-the-counter medication is sufficient. After a week your stitches come out and your recovery is pretty much over. You will have some residual swelling, but the pain will passed.
What Does the Recovery Process Look Like?
Our patients absolutely love this procedure because it rejuvenates the face but it does so in a subtle way. Another awesome plus is recovery — this is not an overly difficult recovery.
When you return home after your surgery, your eyelids will be covered with light gauze. We will provide you with a cold compress and eyedrops to keep your eyes moist. If you’re diligent with use of the compress, it can really reduce your swelling and bruising. Pain is not severe and can usually be handled with over-the-counter pain medication. After one week, your stitches will be removed and your eyelid recovery is usually mostly complete. You may have some on again, off again light swelling, but this resolves in a few weeks. You can usually return to work in just 3-5 days.
Schedule a Consultation
If you want to learn how more about blepharoplasty, contact on of our offices in near New Brunswick, NJ, Staten Island, NY, and Brooklyn, NY. You can also call us at (718) 608-1111, or check out our Cosmetic Surgery Blog.