You’ve just woken up after a good night’s sleep. You feel refreshed, and your reflection shows it — in particular, your eyes look bright and awake. There’s no puffiness, dark circles or heavy lids. You leave home feeling confident and energetic, and the positivity spills over into the rest of your day.
For many people, any unwanted symptoms of tired eyes are fortunately temporary. They come and go with late nights and interrupted sleep, or maybe only pop up after a salty meal or one too many glasses of wine. But for others — from young people with hooded eyes to those struggling with aging skin — the lid sagging, under-eye bags and discolored skin are permanent fixtures. Time and genetics can mean that your expression looks exhausted or upset, even when you’ve had an unbroken night’s sleep and are in a good mood. If instead of loving your appearance, you find yourself looking in the mirror and only feeling frustration with your eyes, it may be time to consider eyelid surgery to restore your confidence and your expression.
Eyelid surgery — also known as an eyelid lift, eye lift, or blepharoplasty — is a surgical procedure that restores a youthful appearance to tired or aged-looking eyelids. An eyelid lift procedure can help you achieve the following improvements:
- Remove excess skin from severely hooded or drooping upper eyelids
- Reduce puffiness or “bags” in your lower eyelids
- Relieve and smooth dark circles under eyes
- Eliminate drooping skin under your lower eyelids
- Improve vision by lifting upper eyelids
To learn more about eyelid lifts in Cedar Rapids and Coralville, Iowa, contact Dr. Andrews Plastic Surgery today to schedule a consultation.
Is an Eyelid Lift Right For You?
Aging is the top reason that people seek an eyelid lift, and the surgery is very well-suited to addressing concerns around the eyes that are caused by aging skin. In particular, eyelid surgery helps remove drooping or sagging skin, repositions muscles that have become weakened over time and removes or repositions fat pockets that have fallen out of place.
When it comes to the thin, fragile skin and structures around the eyes, time and gravity don’t do anyone any favors. First, the structural elements of your skin — molecules like collagen and elastin — begin to break down more easily. This results in a loss of skin elasticity and structure, which in turn leads to sagging and drooping, particularly in the upper eyelids. Then, as the skin weakens, it stops supporting underlying pads of fat that support and cushion your eye. The fat pocket in the lower eyelid is notorious for dropping out of place, resulting in a puffy bag and hollows under the eye socket.
And finally, the small muscles around the eyes that help make facial expressions can become weak — causing more drooping — or can become slightly stuck in place — causing wrinkles around the eyes like crow’s feet. Any or all of these concerns can be addressed with eyelid surgery, so if any of them sound familiar, you are likely a good candidate for this procedure. Young people may also be good candidates for an eyelid lift if they struggle with genetically hooded eyes or puffy bags. To find out whether this procedure is right for you, reach out to us today to schedule an in-person consultation with Dr. Kahlil Andrews, who can evaluate your needs and help you create a personalized treatment plan.
Your Eyelid Lift Procedure
Your eyelid lift begins with your consultation appointment, which is essential to determine if this surgery is the best solution for your concerns. It’s our goal to match each patient with treatments that will be safe and effective. If Dr. Andrews recommends an eyelid surgery for you, he will then discuss different techniques, options and recovery requirements to ensure you are prepared for the procedure.
A blepharoplasty at Dr. Andrews Plastic Surgery is an outpatient surgery, which means you will spend a few hours in surgery and will be able to return home the same day. We most often use general anesthesia to keep our patients comfortable during surgery, though local anesthesia may be an option depending on your surgical plan. Either type of anesthesia will leave you feeling tired and woozy, so you will need a designated friend or family member to pick you up from your surgery and bring you home. Dr. Andrews will give you a packet of information to bring home that includes instructions and tips for your recovery.
Your eyelid lift procedure will be customized to meet your needs. You may choose an upper blepharoplasty to address concerns limited to the upper eyelid, a lower blepharoplasty to focus on dark circles, hollows or bags of the lower eyelid, or a combined blepharoplasty to address multiple concerns. You may also choose to have a blepharoplasty performed at the same time as other facial plastic surgeries, including a brow lift or a facelift, for full facial rejuvenation.
Upper Eyelid Surgery
During upper eyelid surgery, Dr. Andrews makes small incisions in the skin of your upper eyelid, hidden in the natural folds of your skin. From these incisions, he will trim away any stretched, loose, drooping or excess eyelid skin. Dr. Andrews will suture the remaining skin in place, which lifts heavy eyelids so they no longer fall over your lash line or into your line of vision.
Lower Eyelid Surgery
Lower eyelid surgery involves a small incision typically placed just below the lower lash line to keep scars well-hidden. Through this incision, Dr. Andrews can remove or reposition the pad of fat that causes under eye bags. This gives you a smoother under eye area without hollows, puffiness or discoloration. Dr. Andrews can also manipulate underlying musculature to correct unwanted wrinkles.
Combined Eyelid Surgery and Other Procedures
It’s very common to have both upper and lower eyelid surgery performed at the same time. Many patients experience signs of aging or genetic concerns on both the upper and lower eyelids, and it saves recovery time and surgical costs to address all of these problems at once rather than opting for two separate surgeries. The same holds true for patients who are experiencing signs of aging elsewhere on the face and who plan to address these concerns with surgery, as well. A drooping brow, fine lines and wrinkles or sagging skin elsewhere on the face can all be corrected with other procedures like facelifts, brow lifts and neck lifts, all of which can easily be performed alongside blepharoplasty.
Be sure to discuss all of your concerns with Dr. Andrews during your blepharoplasty consultation, even those that aren’t related specifically to your eyes. With this information, he can recommend the right combination of procedures to meet your needs and deliver your best possible results.
What Is Eyelid Lift Recovery Like?
After your surgery, you will experience significant swelling and discoloration in the area that can take some time to fade. You will need to take some time at home to rest and recover. Dr. Andrews will provide you with aftercare instructions, supply any necessary pain management prescriptions and monitor your healing at follow-up appointments. The amount of time you will need to recover from your eyelid surgery depends on several factors, including your age, overall health, surgical plan and your body’s natural healing responses.
We advise taking the first three to five days after surgery to rest as much as possible. You will likely be taking prescription medications to manage pain and won’t be able to drive or attend to work or other responsibilities. You should arrange for help around the house with cooking, pet or childcare, general errands and transportation to and from your follow-up appointments. Within a week, you will be feeling better and will be able to transition to over-the-counter pain management, after which you can begin to resume light activities as you feel comfortable.
You’ll continue to see the signs of your surgery subside as the first 10 to 14 days after your surgery pass. You should rest, stay hydrated and eat healthy foods to promote your recovery during this time. Don’t overextend yourself, avoid strenuous exercise and be sure to follow Dr. Andrews’ recovery instructions carefully. In general, the typical combined blepharoplasty patient will need to take about two weeks away from most normal activities. At this point, most of the swelling, redness or bruising will have subsided, though some scarring may still be visible.
Dr. Andrews will continue to monitor your progress and will clear you for certain activities like driving, working, exercising or otherwise throughout your recovery. If you have any questions or worries as you heal, we encourage you to call our offices so we can help you determine if there is any cause for concern.
Contact Dr. Andrews Plastic Surgery
If you are interested in an eyelid lift or any facial plastic surgery in the Iowa City, Cedar Rapids or Coralville, Iowa area, Dr. Kahlil Andrews offers unmatched expertise and qualifications. As a board-certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Andrews has performed many successful eyelid lifts with beautiful, subtle results, helping his clients achieve the natural, youthful and energized appearance they seek. Schedule your consultation at Dr. Andrews Plastic Surgery today to get started toward restoring your confidence with eyelid surgery. Call us at 319-382-8230.