Take a 'Life Stage' Approach to Rejuvenating the Eyes

APRIL 22, 2014
Robert T. Grant, MD, MSc, FACS

It is said the eyes are the gateway to the soul, but they are also the first place to show signs of aging. As a result, eyelid surgery is one of the most popular procedures among patients who are looking to minimize the effects of aging and achieve facial rejuvenation.
 
While blepharoplasty is an excellent surgery that yields amazing results, I feel there are a variety of cosmetic procedures that can minimize the signs of aging around the eyes and help patients achieve a youthful, rested appearance. Taking steps early on to ensure your patient’s eyes look their best is the most effective way to keep the hands of time at bay.
 
Many people consider cosmetic treatments to be reactive procedures that correct problems once they occur. However, I have a different philosophy that is catching on throughout the plastic surgery field.
 
My “Life Stage Personal Enhancement” approach is simple: patients start early with smaller, preventative cosmetic treatments and procedures and minimize the work that needs to be performed later. For instance, when rejuvenating the eyes, I always advise my patients to start with facial skincare treatments in their 30s to stall fine lines and wrinkles for a longer period of time. While this may not prevent the need for blepharoplasty down the road, it may postpone it for 5-10 years.
 
Patients in their 40s and 50s may want to consider non-surgical interventions, such as Botox and Juvederm, which will help treat those persistent lines that skin resurfacing can no longer target. Botox relaxes the tight muscles associated with age and minimizes wrinkling, while Juvederm restores lost volume to sunken areas. I always make sure these injectable treatments come at a minimal cost and no downtime.
 
In my experience, I have found that patients in their 50s and beyond may want to consider surgical intervention. More and more people are living longer, more active lives, so there is no reason why they cannot continue to look their best at the same time. This is a great time to explore surgical options, such as blepharoplasty, eyebrow lifts, and more. However, every patient is different and has unique needs, and my “Life Stage Personal Enhancement” approach to beauty maintenance helps identify their specific desires early on and plan their course of action accordingly.
 
Since the eyes are one of the most important facial features, patients do not need to wait until they are older to keep them looking fresh, and it is our job as healthcare professionals to help them with that.

Robert T. Grant, MD, MSc, FACS, is Chief of the combined Divisions of Plastic Surgery at New York-Presbyterian Hospital-Columbia University Medical Center and New York-Presbyterian Hospital-Weill Cornell Medical Center. He is also Associate Clinical Professor of Surgery in the College of Physicians and Surgeons at Columbia University and Adjunct Associate Professor of Clinical Surgery at Weill Cornell Medical College. For more information about Dr. Grant or to contact him, visit his website at www.robertgrantmd.com.

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