Eyelid Surgery: A Newbie’s Guide to Blepharoplasty
September 18, 2020
Here at The Plastic Surgery Clinic, we perform several eyelid surgeries each year, and it’s no surprise why. We can all agree that the eyes are one of our most defining features.
There’s also just so much to love about our eyes: their colour, their shape, and probably most importantly how much they can communicate without us actually having to say anything. During these strange Covid times, eyes have become all the more essential as a means of communication while we wear masks.
But in some cases, our eyes can miscommunicate how we actually feel. Do people tell you that you look tired or that you look like you’ve had a late night even though you feel perfectly rested?
As we age the muscles that support our eyelids tend to weaken, causing our eyelids to stretch, but also allowing fat to accumulate above or below our eyelids (or both) causing them to droop or look unnecessarily puffy, and creating those dreaded dark bags under our eyes. Some of us are genetically predisposed to having heavy eyelids or dark circles under our eyes, fast tracking the process and ageing us before our time. In some cases, droopy eyelids can even affect our vision creating a whole other gamut of issues.
If any of this speaks to you, blepharoplasty, otherwise known as eyelid surgery, could be right for you. Here are some of the most important things we think you should know if you’re considering eye lift surgery.
What’s Involved in Eyelid Surgery?
All surgeries require precision and expertise, but with eyelid surgery in particular, because your surgeon is working on very small and fine areas. Your surgery could take anywhere from 1 to 3 hours depending on the complexity of your case and whether your surgeon is working on both upper and lower eyelids.
The goal of the surgery is to remove any excess fat and trim any unwanted skin or muscle in order to lift and tighten the area around your eyes, making them look more youthful and awake.
You also need to be prepared for your recovery to take some time, which may involve some discomfort and a bit of a wait to see the results you’ve been dreaming about. Your doctor will closely follow your recovery progress and support you every step of the way, but there will be bruising and swelling, your eyelids could feel dry and tight, or even itch or burn. They may also be more sensitive to light. But you’ll probably be up and at ‘em again within 10 days.
That said, we always like to remind our patients to be patient (excuse the pun) with themselves. Although you might be able to go back to work 10 days following your procedure, your true result will really start to make itself apparent a couple of months following your surgery and as you continue to recover and heal. It’s a journey, but in our experience, those who embark on it definitely feel that it’s worth it.
Choose an Eye Lift Surgeon that You Trust
Blepharoplasty is a super delicate surgery around one of the most important places on your face, meaning you don’t want just anyone performing the surgery. You want the best of the best. How do you find the best eyelid lift surgeon? Our answer is always to do your research and don’t rush into things until you feel confident in your decision.
Find out who the best surgeon in your area is for eyelid surgery. We stress the “in your area” point because you want the same surgeon to follow you from start to finish, but you will also need a good family/friend support system for at least the first week of your recovery, so it can be beneficial to stay close to home for this procedure. And if you’re traveling to see an expert, talk to them about your best options and plan to stay somewhere nearby for the timeline they recommend.
Meet with your surgeon and be sure to ask a lot of questions. How many eyelid surgeries have they performed? Ask to see before and after photos. And just generally get a feel for who will be performing your surgery. You want to feel good with your surgeon, you want to be able to trust them, you want to make sure that they understand you and that they know exactly what sort of result you are looking to achieve. You definitely want someone who’s a good listener that really understands your vision for your result.
And you don’t have to be ok with the first doctor that you meet with. You can get several opinions and then choose, or if you meet a surgeon that you like and want to meet with them again to discuss more questions, don’t be shy to do that either. This person will be working on your eyes; you need have complete trust in them.
Is Eyelid Surgery Permanent?
Eyelid surgery is permanent, but it can’t stop the ageing process. The tissues around your eyes will continue to age, which may modify your result over time. In some cases, patients choose to come back for a subsequent procedure. In these cases our doctors might recommend a forehead lift as opposed to having another eyelid lift. Lower eyelid surgery typically does not need to be revisited.
Be Sure to Keep Your Eye Lift Expectations Realistic
A lot of our patients ask whether people will be able to tell that they’ve had surgery or not. If you’re worried about people being able to tell you’ve had eyelid surgery because of scarring or something unsightly, then you can throw those fears away, as our expert surgeons make sure that scarring is minimal and hidden in the natural creases of your eyes.
If you want people to notice that something is different, your eyes will definitely pop and look more refreshed and more youthful, but it’s really important to make sure you have realistic expectations with regards to what this surgery can do for you. It will definitely make a difference, especially if your vision had been previously obstructed. But eye lift surgery is a subtle procedure that will give your face a more youthful appearance but will not necessarily dramatically change your look.
We always invite our new patients to come in for a free consultation in order to discuss their goals and expectations. It’s really important for our surgeons to understand what you want out of your procedure. They can also show you eyelid surgery before and after photos that will give you an idea of how your look will change and be improved. Although your look won’t necessarily be identical to what you see, you’ll definitely have a better idea of what result can be achieved with eye lift surgery.