Do you feel uncomfortable with your baggy lower eyelids, or do you have excess skin on your upper eyelids that is unattractive or impairs your vision? If these are issues you deal with, you might benefit from a blepharoplasty, also known as an eye lift or eyelid surgery. H-MD Medical Spa, located in Oklahoma City, OK, is the best place to care for all your eye lift needs.
What Should You Expect from Blepharoplasty?
Before you schedule your eye lift, you will need to have a consultation with your plastic surgeon.
Discussion of Medical History
At your consultation, you will discuss your medical history, including any medical problems you have currently, or have struggled with in the past. Your doctor will also ask about any surgeries you have had in the past and will want to know how you have reacted to them.
Your doctor will also ask about any family history for issues that specifically impact the eyes, such as dry eyes, glaucoma, allergies, circulatory problems, thyroid problems, and diabetes. We will also ask about any medications, both prescription and over-the-counter, as well as any vitamins and supplements you take.
Discussion of Expectations and Candidacy
Your doctor will talk to you about what you are expecting from the eyelid surgery and what a satisfactory outcome would look like. Your doctor will also discuss with you whether or not you are a good candidate for the procedure. Good candidates generally are in good overall health and have realistic expectations about the procedure and what it can and cannot do.
Physical Examination and Eyelid Photography
Your surgeon will conduct a thorough physical examination to ensure that you are in good overall health. They will also examine your eyelids and measure certain aspects of them. Your doctor will also photograph your eyes from different angles. These photographs help when planning the surgery and may be used as a reference during the surgery. They also help to assess the immediate and long-term results of the surgery.
Your doctor will provide you with some directions on how to make sure your body is ready for surgery. You should stop taking medications that include warfarin, aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen, or naproxen sodium as these can increase bleeding.
If you smoke cigarettes, your doctor will instruct you to quit smoking several weeks before surgery because it can reduce your ability to heal. Your doctor will also have you arrange for someone to drive you home after surgery and to stay with you for your first night.
This procedure is done in an outpatient setting; your doctor will inject a numbing medication into your eyelids and administer medication through an IV so that you are relaxed and unaware, but not completely unconscious during the procedure.
It’s possible to have an eye lift that treats only your upper lids or your lower lids, or you can have an eye lift that treats both your upper and lower lids. If you are having surgery on both your upper and lower lids, your surgeon will generally work on your upper lid first. They will cut along the fold of the eyelid and remove some excess skin, muscle and fat. After all the necessary tissue has been removed, the doctor will suture the area closed.
On the lower lids, your doctor will make a cut just below the lashes, in the natural crease of your lower lid, or on the inside of the lower lid. Your surgeon then will remove or redistribute the excess fat, muscle, and sagging skin, then suture it closed.
After your surgery is over, you will spend a couple of hours in the recovery room so you can be monitored. Later that day, you’ll be sent home to recover. Your doctor will give you some instructions to best care for yourself after surgery.
You’ll be asked to use ice packs on your eyes for about 10 minutes every hour during your first night after surgery. The day after surgery, you should be using ice packs on your eyes four to five times throughout the day. You will need to regularly and gently clean your eyelids using prescribed eye drops or ointments. You should avoid straining or any strenuous activities for about a week. Avoid smoking until you are completely filled, as this can impact your body’s ability to heal.
You’ll need to avoid rubbing your eyes, and if you do use contact lenses, don’t put them in for about two weeks after surgery. You’ll be asked to wear darkly tinted sunglasses when you go outside to protect the skin on your eyelids from the wind and sun. You’ll need to sleep with your head raised higher than your chest for a few days to help promote healing. And all the blood-thinning medications your doctor had you avoid before surgery you will also need to avoid after surgery for a while.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Creates the Need for an Eye Lift?
The aging process can have significant effects on the eyelids. As the skin ages, it loses its elasticity; it doesn’t look as tight and taut as it did when you were younger. This lack of elasticity results in a number of changes to the body, including wrinkles on the face and sagging in many areas. The skin of the eyelids is particularly affected by the pull of gravity and leads to excessive skin collecting on the upper and lower eyelids.
On the lower eyelids, this excess skin can cause wrinkles and bulges; it can also cause you to have overly-large undereye bags. On the upper eyelids, the excessive skin can fold over the eyelashes and actually get in the way of your ability to see. Additionally, there is a layer of fat that cushions your eyeball from the skull, and it’s held in place by a thin membrane. As you age, this thin membrane weakens, allowing the fat to push forward into the lids like a hernia.
Why Do People Get Eye Lifts?
Most people who seek eye lifts are near or older than their 40’s, because this is when the changes occurring within the skin’s structure begin to become noticeable in various parts of the body. However, if baggy or droopy eyelids do run in your family, you may notice these changes occurring earlier.
People choose to get eye lifts for different reasons; it can be for aesthetic or medical reasons. You may be displeased with your appearance and how it ages you and wish to look younger and revitalized. You may have no problem with looking your age but feel that the oversized bags beneath your eyes make you look ill, and want to get back to feeling and looking like yourself.
And of course, many people choose to have eyelid surgery because it is impairing their vision. No matter what your reasoning for getting an eye lift, your feelings and motives are valid.
Are the Results of Blepharoplasty Permanent?
The goal of eyelid surgery is to create a permanent crease. The benefits are long-lasting, and most people do not need to have the procedure done again. It’s important to remember that although this surgery does reverse many of the unfortunate side effects of aging, you will still continue to age after the surgery. It is possible that as you continue aging, your skin will again begin to sag.
If your lids sag again, it may be preferable to get a forehead lift rather than another eyelift.
Why Do Some People Need an Eye Lift Before They Need a Facelift?
The issues that encourage people to get an eyelift or a facelift both occur due to the loss of elasticity in the skin and gravity’s effect on this less elastic skin. However, the baggy and puffy eyelids that this creates tend to occur years before the wrinkles and sagging jowls that a facelift treats. Because of this, it’s common for people to elect to have eyelifts years before they need a facelift.
Does Blepharoplasty Leave Any Visible Scars?
Eyelid surgeries generally do not leave any visible scarring. That’s because the incisions in the eyelids follow the natural skin’s folds and creasing. By using the skin’s natural form, your surgeon is able to effectively hide the scars. Once healed, the hairline scars fade and become basically invisible and unnoticeable.
How Long Does the Surgery Take?
Before the surgery, your surgeon will spend probably a half-hour discussing with you where the crease will go. Generally, the surgery takes about an hour, but it can take longer depending on the complexity of the surgery.
When Can You Go Back to Work After Surgery?
New techniques in surgical procedures have helped reduce healing times. That being said, every case is different. Your medical history and general physical health will impact your healing. If your work doesn’t involve strenuous activity, you will likely feel comfortable returning to work in a few days while wearing dark glasses to protect your eyes.
How Long After Surgery Should You Wait to Take a Shower or a Bath?
You can start taking showers again after about one week, but you should avoid them prior to that because the steam can create issues for your healing eyelids. After surgery, you can take a tub bath at any point, but be careful when washing around your eyes.
Are There Any Dietary Restrictions After Surgery?
While there isn’t anything patients cannot eat after surgery, you should introduce foods gently. You should first try liquids, then soft foods, and advance into solids as you continue to tolerate these foods. It’s important to drink as much fluid as possible to keep you from becoming dehydrated and promote healing.
Aging is a process we all wish we could slow down. Thankfully, plastic surgery is able to reverse the impact of aging. The eyes are the first facial feature we notice about a person, and it gives us our very first impression of them.
Blepharoplasty is the only easy and effective way to get rid of the sagging, excess skin, and bulging undereye bags that make you look tired and older than you are. If you’re ready to turn back the clock, it may be time to consider eyelid surgery. For more information about blepharoplasty, or to schedule a consultation, give us a call at H-MD Medical Spa, in Oklahoma City, OK.