As skin ages, it begins to lose its elasticity, slowly slipping to a lower position on the face. Not unlike a gradually deflating balloon, the facial features droop and sag and skin that was once taunt and firm becomes wrinkled and furrowed. Among the earliest features to succumb to the constant pull of gravity is the thin and delicate skin above and below the eyes. Excess, sagging skin collects on the upper and lower eyelids, causing wrinkles and hoods that can hang over the eyelashes and occasionally even obstruct vision. The fat that cushions the eyeball from the skull settles and bulges in the upper and lower eyelids while the thin membrane that holds the fat in place weakens, allowing the fat to jut into the lids. Eyelid surgery (also called an eye lift or blepharoplasty), can not only reduce the bagginess in the lower eyelids, but also remove excess skin from the upper eyelids, effectively rejuvenating the entire area surrounding the eyes.
According to statistics compiled by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), eyelid surgery has been steadily growing in popularity among patients under thirty for the past five years, and was actually the cosmetic surgical procedure most commonly performed on patients aged 40-54 in 2013. Eyelid surgery is most commonly done for cosmetic reasons. Specifically, this procedure treats the loose or sagging skin that creates folds or disturbs the natural contour of the upper eyelid and removes excess fatty deposits that appear as puffiness in the eyelids or bags under the eyes. Often, especially when performed for cosmetic reasons, the procedure is combined with laser skin resurfacing to revitalize and rejuvenate the skin around the eyes, minimizing fine lines, and wrinkles while improving the appearance of dark under-eye circles.
A blepharoplasty need not only be cosmetic, however. The procedure can also be performed to address functional issues as well. It is not uncommon for some people to develop ptosis, or an excessive drooping of the upper eyelid. When the muscle that holds the eye open becomes weakened by excessive manipulation or trauma, the upper eyelid may droop low enough to impair peripheral vision for driving or other visual tasks. Furthermore, functional blepharoplasty may be necessary if exaggerated bagginess of the upper or lower eyelids have made it difficult for the patient to wear necessary eyeglasses or contact lenses. In some of these cases, reducing the skin and fat deposits in the eyelids may not be sufficient to alleviate the symptoms, and a more extensive forehead lift, or brow lift, procedure to tighten the underlying muscle structure may be necessary.
If you are interested in learning more about Atlantic Plastic Surgery, P.C. or the plastic surgery procedures our plastic surgeons perform, contact us at one of our Atlanta, Alpharetta, Cumming, or Newnan offices. Additionally, we provide a variety of options for financing, including ALPHAEON® and CareCreditSM, in order to assist you. Please contact Atlanta Plastic Surgery with any questions you may have concerning the financial planning of your procedure and don’t forget to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ for the latest news.