Improve Your Outlook by Improving the Eyes You Look Out Of

Mark Beaty, M.D. Sandy Springs Living

Have you ever felt that you look tired all the time, even when you have had plenty of rest? Do your friends and co-workers ask whether you are getting enough sleep? When you look in the mirror, do your eyelids look heavy, puffy or have dark circles? If so, you may have one of the most common problems I see in my facial plastic surgery practice.

One of the earliest signs of aging for many people is the formation of bags and folds around the eyelids. This problem is so common that I often see patients in their 20s with significant changes in this area. Folds and creases in the upper lid can cause a heavy appearance, reduce the apparent size of the eye and make application of make-up difficult. In more extreme cases, the vision may even be compromised.

In the lower lid, fatty fullness and puffy tissue often cause unsightly bulges that can result in shadowing beneath the lid. Excess skin in the lower lids may produce creases and wrinkles, which contribute to an aged and weathered appearance.

All of these problems can be corrected with relatively simple cosmetic eyelid procedures (blepharoplasty). Working through small incisions hidden in the natural lid creases or sometimes even inside the lid, a surgeon can restore a normal contour to the eyelid and eliminate most types of bulges and bags. Excess fatty deposits in the eyelid are removed or repositioned and the supportive membrane that maintains the shape of the lid is tightened.

Repositioning of the eyelid fat is increasingly popular and is performed under general or local anesthesia, depending on the extent of the procedure planned. Most patients recover from cosmetic eyelid surgery with little discomfort and often can return to daily activities within a week to 10 days. There is generally some bruising that may persist for a longer period of time. Contact lenses cannot be worn for the first two weeks after surgery.

There are several new techniques that offer the ability to address problems in the brow and mid-face regions through an eyelid approach. As previously mentioned, fat repositioning may help soften the appearance of prominent orbital rims. Additionally, there are now devices available which can enable surgeons in some cases to perform brow or midface lifting along with a blepharoplasty without additional incisions. Well-versed cosmetic eyelid surgeons are familiar with all of these techniques and can help patients decide on the best methods to correct their individual problems.

Eyelid surgery is a satisfying experience for both the patient and surgeon, offering a marked improvement in appearance with relatively little recovery time. Improving the eyes you look out of may improve your outlook on life.

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