Blepharoplasty blog from Cincinnati plastic surgeons
Our Cincinnati plastic surgeons specialize in procedures like facelifts, eyelid lifts and brow lifts. Eyelid lifts, also known as blepharoplasty, make you look younger and more refreshed by removing extra skin and improving the contours around the eyes. There is wide variation in how the procedures are performed. Recovery varies depending on the invasiveness of the procedure performed by your plastic surgeon.
Upper eyelid lifts
Upper eyelid lifts are often performed in conjunction with a brow lift to restore the upper eyelid crease, reduce hooding and make the eyes appear brighter. Upper lid blepharoplasty primarily removes a strip of skin from the upper eyelid. Sometimes plastic surgeons remove a small amount muscle and fat, too. We design the incisions to fall in the eyelid crease so that it is camouflaged after healing.
Lower eyelid lifts
Lower eyelid blepharoplasty can remove extra skin, re-suspend the muscle to improve contour, reduce bags and improve tear troughs. Skin removal and muscle suspension lead to minimal recovery. Fat re-draping to improve bags and fill tear troughs leads to slightly more bruising and swelling. We place the incisions just underneath your eyelashes to hide the scars, which fade over time.
Recovery after an eyelid lift is relatively easy. Pain is mild and most patients only take pain medicine for 1 to 3 days. Mild to moderate bruising and swelling is expected. The length and severity of swelling is reduced by resting and sleeping with your head above your heart. We recommend using a recliner or pillows to keep yourself at a 45 degree angle. Additionally, icing is critical. Ideally, you should apply ice for 15 minutes, followed by a 15 minute break. Continue this process while you are awake for at least the first 3 days. You will get even better results if you continue this for 5 to 7 days after your blepharoplasty.
Bruising can be further reduced by the use of arnica. If cleared by your plastic surgeon, arnica is available in oral and topical forms. We prefer Emunition E2 Bruise Crème, available through Kathy Jones Skin Care. Medical grade mineral makeups may be applied soon after your eyelid lift to cover up any bruising that does occur. These highly pure products can be applied to your eyelid incisions within days of surgery, once your plastic surgeon gives the okay.
Dry eyes or irritation is possible after an eyelid lift. It is important to protect your eyes after surgery to keep them well lubricated. Our plastic surgeons prescribe lubricating eye drops and ointments to help with this. These frequently contain a small amount of steroid to aid in the reduction of swelling.
Your stitches are generally removed within the first week. Most of the swelling should have dissipated by this point for an upper eyelid lift. Lower eyelid lifts that re-drape fat to fill the tear trough can take an additional week. You should plan to take 1 to 2 weeks off work in most cases. We recommend that you plan for at least 4 to 6 weeks of recovery prior to attending a big event or going on a trip. This gives plenty of time to make sure you look rejuvenated. Find additional Tips and Traps for blepharoplasty here. You can read more helpful recovery tips here.
The high degree of patient satisfaction after eyelid lifts explains why this is one of the most popular plastic surgery procedures. Our Cincinnati plastic surgeons enjoy seeing the transformation in their patients. We are excited to help with your facial rejuvenation. Take the next step and contact us today to arrange a consultation.
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