Eyelid surgery, also called blepharoplasty, can be used to repair the sagging and bagging of upper and lower eyelids. It provides many cosmetic and functional benefits. Cosmetic benefits include firming the lax muscles, excising excess skin and removing fat bulges in the upper eyelids. It also tightens the lower eyelids so they don’t sag and removes under-eye fat bulges. The eyes will most likely have a more youthful appearance.
Functional advantages can include better vision if the upper eyelid skin is hanging over the eye, narrowing the field of vision. It may reduce side or peripheral vision. Some people find that they don’t realize they are tilting their head back a bit to see better. For the lower eyelid, the functional advantage involves tightening so that the eye will hold contact lenses, which may not be possible with sagging lower eyelids.
When your eyelids become stretched and start to droop, it may make you look like you are sleepy, angry or depressed when you are not. Eyelid surgery tightens the skin and gives your eyes a more youthful shape. Eyelid surgery is one of the simplest procedures that may have a dramatic positive effect on your appearance.
Our surgeon may do all four eyelids in one session. When you have a consultation, your eyelids will be examined and a course of treatment will be recommended.
What are the Different Eyelid Surgery Procedures?
During upper eyelid surgery, the skin will be separated from the underlying tissue and excess fat that causes the appearance of puffiness is removed. If necessary, the muscles that may be lax will be tightened. The skin is then replaced and any excess is removed.
There are different techniques for lower eyelid surgery. Our surgeon can remove fat that may be causing the appearance of bags under your eyes. He can remove excess skin and loose muscle as well as fat. The exact details of the procedure vary from patient to patient based on a number of factors. Eyelid surgery is not one-size-fits-all, so we always come up with a customized surgery. Other procedures like a facelift can be done during the same session.
How to Prepare for the Surgery and Recovery
During your consultation, we will examine your medical history and ask questions about any previous surgeries you may have had. We will look into current medical conditions such as dry eyes, glaucoma, circulatory problems, allergies, diabetes and thyroid problems. We will ask about any prescription medications you take as well as dietary supplements and herbal remedies. We need to know about your alcohol consumption and tobacco use. You may be asked to stop taking certain medications for a few weeks before the surgery. Our surgeon will give you instructions on what you can and cannot take. You must quit smoking, if applicable, for a set amount of time before and after the surgery. Smoking inhibits tissue healing and raises the risk of complications.
Our surgeon will discuss your goals for the outcome of the surgery. It is important that you have realistic expectations so you will be satisfied with the results. Any cosmetic procedure should be your decision alone and not because another person wants to change your appearance.
You will have a physical examination as well as a thorough eye examination. This may include measuring your eyelids and testing your tear production. You will also have a vision examination to check your peripheral vision. We may take photographs of your eyes from different perspectives that will help our staff plan the surgery.
When you set up your time for the surgery, you need to arrange for someone to drive you home after the procedure. You will also need someone to stay with you the first night. We may recommend you remain at home for a set amount of time after the surgery while your eyelids heal.
Before the surgery, you should prepare some things at home. Have a few ice packs ready. These can be freezer bags full of ice cubes or even frozen veggies. Our surgeon will prescribe any artificial tears or eye drops you may need so you can have them ready. We will also recommend any over-the-counter medication that you can use if you want. These will not include any blood-thinning medications such as aspirin or ibuprofen because they may increase the risk of unnecessary issues.
You can use your ice packs after you return home. Avoid swimming, lifting heavy objects and vigorous exercise for a set amount of time. If you smoke, don’t start again until advised by our staff. If you wear contact lenses, only start using them again when directed.
Eyelid Surgery for the Asian Eye
Asian eyelid surgery is a good option for Asians who want a more defined upper eyelid. It is a procedure that has been performed for more than 100 years and first documented in Japan. Also called the Asian blepharoplasty or double eyelid surgery, it reshapes the upper eyelid to have a more defined crease. We perform this surgery to maintain the patient’s cultural and personal identity when we carefully reshape the upper eyelid skin.
Asian eyelid surgery requires special training. The surgeon learns about Asian eyelid anatomy because the goal is different from traditional eyelid surgery and requires a different approach. This will depend on your skin tone and personal anatomy. The anatomy of Asian eyelids is very different from non-Asian eyelids. Even between Asians, anatomy can be very different. This is why it requires special training to perform Asian eyelid surgery.
The two main categories for Asian blepharoplasty are:
The suture technique – this technique is only suitable for certain situations. When we examine your eyelids, we may recommend the suture technique according to your ultimate goals.
The incision technique – this is a combination of techniques that need one or more tiny incisions. It is more involved than the suture technique and has a longer recovery time, but the results are more predictable and last much longer.
The right procedure and technique for you will depend on a number of factors and can ultimately be discussed during your consultation at our office. You should be happy to know that Dr. Chase Lay’s primary focus is Asian eyelid surgery. During a consultation with Dr. Lay, you can get more information about this specific type of procedure.
The Benefits of Eyelid Surgery
Just some of the many benefits of eyelid surgery include:
Improved vision – poor vision that is caused by fat deposits and loose skin may be improved. Some people say their forehead feels better because the muscles in the forehead are not constantly being used to raise the excess skin that is drooping over the eye.
A fresh and alert appearance – drooping eyelids may be a common result of a lack of sleep, but you don’t want this appearance all the time. When the outline of your eye is firmed up, you look refreshed and alert, and the shape is more youthful.
Lose the luggage – with lower eyelid surgery, you can get rid of the under-eye bags. In some cases, the dark circles will also go. We can reposition fat so the under-eye area of your face doesn’t look sunken once the skin is tightened.
Reduce lines around the eyes – this is a great side effect of eyelid surgery. Some of the lines on the outer corners and lower eyelid are removed when the skin is replaced and the excess is gone.
Look and feel better overall – Let’s be honest; when you look good, you feel good. It’s a fact of life, and it’s nothing to be ashamed of. When there’s something bothering you about your appearance, it can be hard to live life to the fullest. That thing bothering you is always in the back of your head, causing you to feel self-conscious and less than your best. Eyelid surgery gives you the opportunity to look better, which will most likely lead to you feeling better, too!
Learn More During a Consultation
Reach out to the team of professionals at the office of Chase Lay, MD to schedule a consultation and learn more about the benefits of eyelid surgery. With several techniques to choose from, you may find the right treatment to improve your appearance and/or quality of life!
The office of Chase Lay, MD is located in San Jose, CA. Contact us today to book an appointment and get started!