Blepharoplasty, or eyelid surgery, at our Toronto plastic surgery center can be a great way to shed years off your appearance without drastically changing how you look. As with any cosmetic procedure, it is important to understand not only the procedure, but also the recovery. This post will discuss several aspects of eyelid surgery recovery and give you a better idea of what you can do to make your post-op experience go smoothly.
What are some normal postoperative conditions?
Typically, post-op symptoms for eyelid surgery are mild and resolve fairly quickly, so patients can return to their normal daily activities soon after their procedure. After surgery, many patients temporarily experience dry/scratchy eyes, excessive tears, and light sensitivity. You can control these conditions by carefully following your doctor’s post-op care instructions.
Will my vision be affected?
It is not uncommon for eyelid surgery patients to experience blurred vision after their procedure. This can be caused by swelling of the eyelids, which can distort the cornea. Eye dryness or too much eye lubrication can also cause blurring. In either case, the symptoms will be short-lived, and the blurred vision should resolve on its own.
After the procedure, you will not be able to wear contacts for about 1 to 2 weeks, with the timing dependent upon your type of surgery. Lower eyelid surgery requires a slightly longer waiting period before patients can resume wearing contacts. If you need to wear corrective lenses, I recommend you wear glasses during the recovery period. For patients who experience light sensitivity, it is a good idea to wear sunglasses while outdoors.
How should I sleep during recovery?
To minimize swelling, I recommend keeping your head above your heart to help any accumulated fluid drain away from the eyelids. It is also important to sleep with your head elevated for the first week. Many patients sleep on a recliner or use pillows to maintain an upright position. Additionally, try not to roll onto your face, as this position can tug on your stitches. Sleeping on your back for the first couple of weeks helps to keep pressure off your eyelids.
What sort of activities will I be able to do during recovery?
It is important to rest during your recovery. Listen to your body and try to not overexert yourself. Watching too much TV or reading for an extensive amount of time may dry out your eyes, so I recommend listening to audiobooks, podcasts, and your favorite playlists. Many of my patients use this time to reflect or do guided meditations, which can be relaxing and help heal the mind, while you are also healing your body.
How soon will I be able to wash my face?
You may shower the day after surgery. You can gently wash your eyelids and face, including the incisions. However, do not swim or take a bath or hot tub for 2 weeks. We recommend that patients not wear makeup for at least a week after surgery. The incisions are healing, and makeup can increase the risk of infection, which will prolong your recovery.
If you want more information about eyelid surgery, check out my previous posts, “Who Is A Good Candidate for Eyelid Surgery” and “Preparing for Eyelid Surgery.” I encourage all my patients to consult me if they have any concerns. Having good communication with your surgeon is a big part of reaching your aesthetic goals.