Though eyelid surgery, also known as blepharoplasty, is often an outpatient procedure, patients still need to take time to recover. Taking time to heal will give you the best results and is the best way to achieve youthful and alert eyes. Here are some ways to make your recovery speedy and successful.
What to Expect After the Surgery
You will rest in the office for a short period of time after the operation. It is important to have someone to drive you home and stay at least overnight to make sure that all is well.
As with most types of surgery, patients can expect some bruising, swelling, and discomfort around the surgical area. Pain can be alleviated through the prescribed analgesics, though the patient should avoid anticoagulants such as aspirin. Cool compresses are also soothing.
Your doctor may also prescribe antibiotics to guard against infection. It’s also recommend that you take your temperature during the recovery time. An elevated temperature may be a sign that an infection is developing.
As you heal, you may find that the eye tears but feels dry at the same time. Your surgeon may prescribe ointment or artificial tears to keep the eyes hydrated and alleviate the feeling of dryness and discomfort around the eyelid. Artificial tears also reduce itching and burning. You may also be sensitive to light for a few days, and some doctors recommend that their patients wear dark sunglasses for at least two weeks after their blepharoplasty.
Beyond this, take it easy for at least a week to 10 days after eyelid surgery. If possible, avoid activities that cause the eyes to dry out. These include reading, using the computer, watching television, or any close-in work such as sewing. You should also avoid wearing contact lenses for at least two weeks. If the patient has non-absorbable stitches, they’ll be removed within the first week after the operation.
Try to sleep with your head elevated, and avoid any strenuous exercise, especially sports and heavy lifting. Even activities such as bending over or crying are discouraged. Patients should avoid swimming because chemicals in a pool can irritate the eyes. Also, you should not smoke. Smoking is not only bad for the overall health, but can impede the healing process.
Complete recovery from blepharoplasty takes several weeks, but most people can return to normal activities within 1 week.