Often your eyes are the first thing another person notices about you. Eyes can convey so many emotions – happiness, sadness, anger, tiredness – without a word being spoken. As we age, the eye area ages too. Whether it’s lack of sleep or irregular sleep patterns, stress, sun damage or collagen and elastin decline, our eyes that were once bright and alert may make us look permanently exhausted, unhappy or angry. There are different ways to address eye concerns. This article is dedicated to help for the lower eyelids but there are options for the upper eyelids as well and you can find out more about upper eyelid surgery in our past blog post.
People who want to address the lower eyelid area have usually developed fat bulges, hollows, wrinkles, or dark circles under the eyes. What are the options to rejuvenate this area? Depending upon a person’s situation, they may address under eye issues with Lower Eyelid Surgery or with nonsurgical options such as dermal fillers.
Lower Eyelid Surgery
Persistent under eye bags are best treated with Lower Eyelid Surgery (blepharoplasty). This surgery will address fat bulges, dark circles, and skin laxity. When a person has excess skin along with fat bulges, a conservative skin removal can be done with the incisions hidden at the lower edge of the lashes. When fat bulges are present with little or no excess skin, the fat is removed through small openings in the inner side of the lower lid. For the right candidate, fat transposition may be done during the surgery which will reposition fat from one area – the “baggy” area – into the “hollow” area under the eye to rebalance the appearance.
General anesthesia is not needed for lower eyelid surgery. Dr. Perkins can perform the surgery under local anesthesia combined with oral sedation alone or together with IV sedation. Pain is usually minimal and easily controlled with over-the-counter Ibuprofen or Tylenol. People usually take one week off work for rest and recovery.
Lower Eyelid Nonsurgical Options
Dermal fillers (such as Juvederm, Restylane, or Perlane) may be used to temporarily fill under-eye hollow areas or depressions creating a smooth contour from the lower eyelid to the cheek. Fillers can last from 6 months to a year or more (depending on the brand used).
Under eye bags may be addressed with Fractional CO2 resurfacing treatment to help smooth the area while encouraging collagen and elastin production.
Whether you are addressing your lower eyelid issues by surgical or nonsurgical means, most people report to Dr. Perkins that they are happy with the end result – a happier, brighter, and more alert appearance that makes others see them in a different light!
Cosmetic surgeon Dr. Terry J. Perkins performs eyelid surgery (and other facial rejuvenation surgeries) at Cosmetic Surgery Center in Santa Barbara. Call 805-563-0000 for an appointment.
Nonsurgical treatments such as fillers and Fractional CO2 can be done at Evolutions Medical & Day Spa in Santa Barbara (805-687-0212). Dr. Perkins is the owner and Medical Director of Evolutions.