Patients considering eyelid surgery should be aware of what to expect after the operation and how they can play an essential role in a successful outcome. Results from blepharoplasty include a more youthful and alert appearance, resolving droopy upper lids or sagging under-eye circles.
Recovery includes some bruising, swelling, and incision healing. The bruising will diminish within two to three weeks, with most of the swelling going down in the same timeframe. But many patients can expect some minor swelling to linger for up to eight weeks.
After five days, you should feel comfortable getting out in public, determined mostly by how well you feel. Your scarring will be minimal and should be close to invisible after one year. Following these tips can go a long way to ensure the skin on your lids heals properly for fantastic results.
Understanding what to expect during your recovery is vital for a successful eyelid lift. Follow all the instructions your doctor gives you, including taking any prescriptions and caring for your incisions. You will be scheduled for after-surgery visits to check on your progress, change bandages, and remove sutures if necessary.
Here are a few recovery tips that can enhance your healing timeframe and results.
Take Time Off
You will need to take time off from your regular activities, whether they be work, school, or household responsibilities. This includes picking the kids up from school, grocery shopping, or other daily chores. Make sure you stock up the pantry and refrigerator with foods easy to prepare for the week following surgery. Clear your calendar for at least one week, maybe two.
Follow Self-Care Instructions
Here are some possible instructions your surgeon may give you to follow during recovery:
- Apply ice packs to your eyes regularly for the first three days
- Clean your eyelids gently
- Use prescribed eye drops or ointments
- Don’t rub your eyes
- Don’t wear contact lenses for two weeks
- Sleep and relax with your head elevated above your chest
- Stop smoking
When you return to your surgeon for your follow-up appointment, you may want to discuss the next steps. In the meantime, avoid taking the following unless suggested your doctor.
- Naproxen sodium (like Aleve)
Make sure you follow these self-care instructions, which can be just as critical as the surgery itself.
Protect Your Eyes
Try to stay indoors as much as possible, especially for the first week or two. If you must go outside, wear dark sunglasses and a wide brim hat to protect your eyes from the environment.
Don’t Strain Your Eyes
Keep your screen time to a minimum. This means television, computer, and tablets. Also, limit reading to give your eyes a chance to rest.
Get Plenty of Rest and Sleep
The more you sleep, the better you heal. Your body’s healing process is more active when your body is not. If you feel tired, no matter the time of day, take a nap. Don’t push yourself. When in doubt, relax.
Avoid Strenuous Activities
Avoid lifting heavy objects or elevating your heart rate for the first few weeks after your operation. Too much activity can increase your pulse, causing an increase in blood flow and possible bleeding. Activities to avoid include sports, intensive workouts, aerobics, or heavy lifting.