Droopy eyelids look adorable on a puppy’s face, but they are certainly unattractive on humans. Puffy bags and sagging eyelids can make us look older, but they also can create vision problems. If your eyelids are interfering with your vision and your appearance, you may be a good candidate for eyelid surgery.
Blepharoplasty, or plastic surgery on the eyelids, is one of the most common procedures in facial plastic surgery. There are two major types of blepharoplasty:
- Functional blepharoplasty can restore an eyelid affected by infection, degeneration, cancer or trauma.
- Cosmetic blepharoplasty creates a rested, rejuvenated look by removing excess skin in the upper eyelid and reducing puffiness in the lower eyelid.
Drooping upper eyelids
Age, UV exposure, genetics and shape of the eye all affect the elasticity of eyelid tissue. As we age, there is no avoidance of some measure of sagging. Ptosis is a condition where the muscle that raises the eyelid is no longer strong enough to lift the lid. This causes drooping and often a partial covering of the eye.
Bags under the eyes
Dark circles and bags under the eyes can be just as unattractive as drooping eyelids. The septum keeps the eye and surrounding tissues in place, but the septum weakens over time and allows fat from the eye socket to move forward. Genetics, allergies, sun exposure, excessive rubbing, trauma or lower eyelid position all affect the formation of bags and dark circles. Blepharoplasty can help remove excess skin and create a more youthful appearance.
Who performs blepharoplasty?
Because of the delicate complexity of the eye, blepharoplasty is often performed by a surgeon who specializes in Ophthalmology and Plastics. Occuloplastics is the subspecialty of Ophthalmology that combines microsurgical techniques of Ophthalmology and the aesthetics of Plastic Surgery.
Insurance coverage for blepharoplasty
If your drooping eyelid is obstructing your vision, your insurance provider may cover the cost of an upper eyelid blepharoplasty. Speak with your eye doctor and a benefits coordinator with your health insurance company to see if you qualify for coverage. You will be asked to take a field test to determine whether your vision is affected by the drooping eyelid. A good place to start is to make an appointment with your eye care professional so you can take the next step to better vision and younger looking eyes!