One of the most popular anti-aging procedures on the market is blepharoplasty, sometimes referred to as eyelid surgery. This procedure is so popular because the eye area is among the first areas to reveal the signs of aging. Today, our cosmetic experts at The Institute of Aesthetic Surgery in Orlando, FL are talking about how long you can expect your recovery to last if you opt for this procedure.
How Long Does It Take to Recover From Eyelid Surgery
Recovering from eyelid surgery usually takes around 10 to 14 days. However, this only applies to the amount of time you will need to take off from work to focus on your recovery completely.
Also, this generalization best applies to individuals who have received both upper and lower blepharoplasty on both eyelids. If you only opt for lower blepharoplasty, you may only need to take three to five days off from work. Additionally, you should know that you will be restricted from strenuous physical activity for 1.5 months regardless of how well you are feeling.
What Can I Do to Shorten My Recovery Period?
Don’t Consume Alcoholic Beverages
One of the most effective steps you can take to shorten your eyelid surgery recovery time is to not consume alcoholic beverages. Alcohol is a toxin. Thus, when alcohol is consumed, your body prioritizes flushing out the toxin. Unfortunately, this results in a hasty purging of essential micronutrients and water in addition to alcohol. Nevertheless, it is crucial that your skin gets as much nutrition and hydration as it can for rapid healing.
Additionally, it may not be safe for you to consume alcohol at the same time as analgesics you may want to take during your recovery period. It is highly advisable to not consume any alcohol until you are healed enough from your procedure to return to work.
Drink Plenty of Water
Not drinking alcohol is a very important step to take if you want to recover from your procedure as soon as you can. However, it isn’t enough. It is also essential that you remain hydrated throughout your recovery period. Your weight, sex, and lifestyle will affect how much you need to drink daily to remain hydrated. That said, men usually need to consume around a gallon of hydration fluids every day.
Women, on the other hand, typically only need half of this amount. Keep in mind, the average person has a sedentary lifestyle. The more active you are, the more hydrating fluids you will need to consume to remain hydrated.
An Extra Note
As important as it is for you to remain hydrated throughout your treatment process, it is also important that you rest as much as you can during your recovery period. However, most Americans are chronically dehydrated. When they finally start to drink a sufficient amount of hydrating fluids, they often find that excessive nighttime urination occurs.
If you struggle to sleep soundly through the night due to the need to urinate at night, see if frontloading your fluid intake helps. If you still wake up to use the restroom in the middle of the night, add a little more sodium to your diet.
Sleep As Much as You Can
It is also essential to sleep as much as you can if you want to recover as quickly as possible from your eyelid surgery. More precisely, it is important that you spend as much time as you can in the rapid eye movement stage of the sleep cycle. It is during the rapid eye movement (REM) stage of sleep that most of your body’s self-healing occurs. Note, it is of the utmost importance that you sleep soundly through the night.
If, for some reason, you wake up in the middle of the night, you will start over at the first sleep stage when you fall back asleep. Note, you should also nap any time you feel unusually tired during the first week post-op. It is perfectly normal to feel particularly groggy during the first 24 to 72 hours post-op, especially if you receive general anesthesia.
Sleep on Your Back
How much sleep you get is very important for a rapid post-op recovery. That said, how you sleep is also very important. To heal as quickly as you can, you must sleep on your back. Sleeping on your stomach or side can result in an excessive amount of pressure placed on your eyelids. This will slow your recovery rate significantly.
Moreover, you should make sure that you are sleeping with your eyes elevated above your heart. Depending on how firm your pillow is, you may need to sleep with a pillow beneath your neck or sleep with an additional pillow beneath your head. Also, if you don’t have a medium or medium-firm mattress, you may want to invest in a suitable mattress pad.
Walking frequently is another great way to speed up your recovery process. Note, it isn’t necessarily walking that is great for your recovery. Rather, participating in moderate cardiovascular activity supports the health and efficiency of your circulatory system. Supporting your circulatory system is a great way to speed up your healing because your circulatory system carries all of the growth factors and nutrients to your incision sites that they need to heal.
We strongly recommend getting at least half of an hour of moderate exercise every day starting the day following your operation. Just remember that overexerting yourself will do you no favors. When your body tells you that it needs to rest, take a break. If you can’t exercise for 30 minutes at a time at first, just do what you can.
An Additional Note
If you can get three 10-minute walking sessions every day, you will benefit significantly. If exercising for 10 minutes in a row is too much for you, don’t be hard on yourself. Everyone recovers at his or her own pace. Just make a point to get up hourly and get your blood flowing a little. Being sedentary will only prolong your recovery period.
Downloading audiobooks before your eyelid surgery can also help you recover faster. Most people keep themselves entertained by consuming media that strains the eyes. For instance, they may play a mobile game on the bus home from work and sit down in front of the television when they get home.
However, playing video games and watching TV shows and movies can strain your eyes. Therefore, to recover from your procedure as quickly as you can, you should rest your eyes as much as possible. While you can read physical books, audiobooks are better because you can rest your eyes whenever you need to without being bored.
Eat Plenty of Protein
You can also hasten your healing process by eating plenty of protein. Since you will be mostly sedentary except for some moderate exercise, like walking, you will only need around 50 to 60 grams of protein every day for the first month and a half of your recovery. While it’s not usually advisable to drink protein shakes because they are usually high in added sugar, you may drink protein shakes during your recovery period to boost your protein intake.
It is normal to find yourself with only a small appetite post-op. Healthier ways to get in protein include eating eggs and cottage cheese and making Greek yogurt-based smoothies. Also, you should make sure that you are consuming your RDA of vitamin C every day. It is important to eat plenty of protein because you need amino acids to produce collagen. However, you can’t produce collagen efficiently if you are deficient in vitamin C.
Schedule Your Initial Evaluation Now
If you opt for blepharoplasty, as a general rule of thumb, you can expect to spend approximately 10 to 4 days off from work to make your recovery your sole priority. However, the smaller the scope of your procedure, the more quickly you will be back to work before 10 days have passed. Note, regardless of the scope of the procedure, it is crucial that you go at least six weeks without intense exercise.
To end your recovery period as quickly as possible, stay hydrated, stay nourished, and elevate your head above your heart when you sleep. To learn more about this procedure, including how you can recover faster afterward, visit us today at The Institute of Aesthetic Surgery in Orlando, FL. We welcome the opportunity to meet you and help you restore the smooth, attentive eyelids of your youth.