Eyelid Surgery Recovery: What to Expect
One of the questions our New York eyelid surgery patients almost always ask is about recovery time. This makes sense: most people who elect eyelid surgery have careers or otherwise busy lives to get back to. And after all, the eyes are one of the most noticeable body features—that’s why eyelid surgery is so popular in the first place!
Here’s the lowdown on what you can expect if you’re considering eyelid surgery.
What’s Outside Your Control
The majority of patients who choose eyelid surgery in New York with us show very few signs of the procedure within two weeks’ time. Some heal faster and are ready to go out in public in just several days with makeup; a few take as long as two weeks or even a little more. This variability is affected by a few factors you can’t control.
The first is how extensive the surgical plan is and where the incisions will be placed. If your plastic surgeon recommends changes to both upper and lower lids for dramatic rejuvenation, it may take several days for bruising and swelling to dissipate.
With our decades of experience performing eyelid surgery, or blepharoplasty, we are skilled at minimizing bruising. But each patient is unique, and some bleed and bruise more readily than others. In addition, the healing process is at least somewhat unpredictable. Even if you’ve experienced rapid healing from another surgery or injury, that doesn’t necessarily translate to rapid recovery from blepharoplasty.
What You CAN Do
The good news is that there are measures you can take to help move the recovery process along as quickly as possible.
• Rest, elevation, cool compresses: An essential part of a quick recovery is your commitment to resting with your head elevated as much as possible and cooling your eye area per our instructions. Sounds simple, right? But some forethought can make it even easier. For instance, you might want to be sure you have some relaxing music right by the bedside and an audiobook, as well as other supplies you may need so you don’t have to get up often (such as water, medication and light snacks). Limiting eye movement is a good strategy, so don’t plan to watch TV or read for a few days.
You should also ensure you have someone to help you with regular chores, such as feeding pets, at first. We can’t stress enough how important it is to relax during the initial post-op period.
• Avoid strenuous activity: Just about any kind of activity that puts you in a vertical position can produce additional swelling—the more strenuous, the more swelling. It’s best not to walk the dog for a few days, for instance, and you should avoid bending over and lifting anything that weighs more than a pound or two for a while.
• Refrain from wearing contacts: You’ll need a pair of regular eyeglasses on hand as you won’t be able to wear contact lenses for about a week after surgery.
• Quit smoking: If you’re a smoker, we’ll advise you to try to quit, or at least refrain for a period prior to and after blepharoplasty. Since nicotine inhibits normal circulation, smokers generally can expect a longer recovery time. This is a great time to stop!
• Follow medication instructions: If you take any kind of blood thinner, we’ll discuss this prior to surgery. It’s best to take a time out from this kind of medication if that’s possible. We will also talk about substances that can help with bruising, like arnica montana.
In Other News…
Our New York eyelid surgery patients are pleased to learn that recovery is usually quite smooth and nearly painless. And the payoff is almost always terrific! Blepharoplasty can work wonders to rejuvenate the appearance with a relatively small investment in time and money.
That’s why we love performing the procedure—it’s one of our favorites. We have worked with thousands of men and women seeking eyelid surgery over the years and would love to work with you too. Read the information we’ve prepared for you on this website, including our eyelid surgery FAQ, then send us an email and tell us about yourself.
If you can’t come to Manhattan for eyelid surgery we have one more piece of advice: choose your plastic surgeon with great care. Make sure he or she has the training, experience and certifications necessary for you to entrust them with your eyes.