Across time and cultures, symmetrical faces have always been considered attractive. A symmetrical face has left and right sides that look like each other, and the features do not need to be exact mirror images – having similar proportions is enough to look appealing. While it is true that a symmetrical face is nice to look at, the real reason is more than skin-deep. Scientific studies show that the human brain is conditioned to associate a symmetrical face with good health and positive personality traits. This is why a lot of people seek procedures that fix or improve facial proportions. Take ptosis surgery (https://nassimplasticsurgery.com/clinic-services/ptosis-surgery/), for example. Ptosis is a condition that affects facial symmetry and surgery is often the recommended treatment option. It is not a life-threatening condition, yet tens of thousands of people opt to undergo ptosis surgery each year to improve their appearance. Read on to learn about the ptosis – what causes the condition, what age is best for a ptosis surgery, and more.
Ptosis is a condition that can affect one or both eyelids and it usually occurs when the structures that lift the eyelid – including ligaments and muscles – become weak due to disease or damage to the nerves that control the eyelid muscles. Another common reason for ptosis is aging. As we age, the muscles and skin that surround the eyelids lose their stretch and sag.
Ptosis can be acquired later in life, or it can be present at birth. The latter is known as congenital ptosis and according to studies, may have genetic causes. The odds of congenital ptosis developing into lazy eye are quite high if the condition is not treated early – several years ago, researchers found out that in a study of 107 young patients with congenital ptosis, there is one out of seven participants whose ptosis progressed into lazy eye.
Those who developed droopy eyelids later in life usually acquired it as a result of a botched eye surgery or Botox treatment, Horner’s syndrome, neurological issues, constant use of contact lenses, or too much rubbing of the eye area, which is a sensitive and delicate area.
Ptosis in children
A drooping eyelid is the most common sign of ptosis. You may notice it in a child if they need to lift their eyebrows, lift up their chin, or tilt their head back to see better. Over time, these seemingly inconsequential actions may lead to neck and head problems. A child with ptosis is also susceptible to other vision problems such as lazy eye (where the drooping eyelid starts to block the vision and one eye will have better vision than the other), astigmatism (blurry images), or crossed/misaligned eyes.
In treating children with severe ptosis, there are several factors that need to be considered: the patient’s age, eyelid height, eye’s movement, strength of the levator muscles, and whether one or both eyelids have ptosis. In most cases, the doctor recommends surgery as treatment – either to attach the drooping eyelid to other muscles that can help lift it or tighten the levator muscle to lift the eyelid. The objective of the treatment is to improve the child’s vision and prevent further (more serious) problems.
It is best to wait until a child is at least twelve years old before undergoing a ptosis correction surgery. This is to make sure that his or her facial structures have reached maturity. Furthermore, an older child may be better fir to handle post-operative recovery than younger ones. There is an exception, however; if the condition is so severe that it interferes with the normal process of visual development, it is possible to perform a ptosis correction surgery on children younger than twelve years old. The treatment of ptosis in children also depends on its root cause. If the child’s ptosis is caused by an underlying medical issue, the doctor will address the issue first.
Ptosis in adults
Ptosis in adults, also known as acquired or involutional ptosis, is something that appears gradually in most people – you might not notice it immediately until you see a photograph of yourself with one eyelid drooping a bit more than the other. Other people may tell you that you have been looking tired and sleepy all the time, even though you are not. If it starts to compromise your vision, you should see an ophthalmologist in Singapore to check if a corrective surgery is needed.
For adults, a ptosis corrective surgery can be scheduled regardless of age. It is typically performed as an outpatient procedure, which means it is safe for the patient to go home on the same day that a surgery is done. The doctor will use a local anesthesia to numb the eye area before the procedure.
There are two surgical methods that the doctor may use: external approach and internal approach. In the external approach, an incision is created in the skin of the eyelid. The doctor then attached the levator muscle to the connective tissue in the eyelid (tarsus). The result is an elevated eyelid that allows an individual to see better. And since the incision is in the eyelid crease, the scar is almost unnoticeable. The internal approach is suitable for people who have strong levator muscle. During the procedure, the doctor turns the eyelid inside out to cut off a portion of the eyelid muscle. The purpose of this method is to shorten either the Mueller’s muscle or the levator muscle (both of which has a role in lifting the eyelid).
What to expect after a ptosis surgery in Singapore
After a successful procedure, your doctor will advise you to refrain from doing strenuous physical activities for up to a week while the treated area heals. You should also avoid rubbing the eye and exposing it to anything that may cause irritation. If you have to go outside, use dark-tinted glasses to protect your eyes and take any prescribed medication or eye drops. There might be some mild swelling and bruising after the surgery, but these will disappear within a few hours or days.
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