Drooping eyes, otherwise known as ptosis, is the appearance of heavy upper eyelids. This tends to happen to us all over time due to the process of ageing. They can also occur due to different medical conditions. Regardless of the cause, depending on severity, it can eventually affect vision. Below we discuss drooping eyes meaning, drooping eyes causes, drooping eyes symptoms, drooping eyes treatment, and drooping eyes surgery.
Drooping eyes (heavy upper eyelids) can occur due to the natural process of ageing, but it can also be caused by a number of medical conditions. It affects men and women equally and doesn’t have a preference for ethnicity.
When the cause is ageing, the mechanism is that the levator muscle (whose job it is to to hold the upper eyelid up) becomes lax and stretches with time resulting in a heavy eyelid. This is the most common cause that we see at Palm Clinic.
When due to a medical cause, the medical condition can affect the nerves responsible for powering the levator muscle, for example due to a stroke, or a neurological disorder such as ocular myasthenia gravis.
Lastly, drooping eyes (droopy eyelid) can be due to a previous trauma, such as a brain injury, or a complication of cataract surgery.
The symptoms associated with eyelid droop can be incredibly varied. In its early stages, ptosis may be little more than a concerning aesthetic issue, whereas if left untreated this can develop into a greater and more inhibiting concern, such as impaired vision. Some may experience dry, or watery eyes. In severe cases, droopy eyelids can force some to tilt their head back simply to see, navigate their way around while walking, or hold a conversation. The unnecessary effort, combined with the repetitive strain of neck movement, can cause serious discomfort for many.
From an aesthetic point of view, droopy eyes can cause some concern about their physical appearance. As the eyelids begin to droop, they can create a dark, sagging appearance in the upper part of the face, and further exacerbate bags of the lower eyelids as well. Combined, these issues can lead to a feeling of looking old or tired.
Your Palm Clinic Doctor will screen you for a medical cause for your drooping eyelids. If indicated, they will refer you on to the appropriate specialist.
When drooping eyes are due to ageing, they will cover treatment options with you, as discussed below.
Addressing problems with droopy eyes can both improve vision and provide an incredible confidence boost. Whether you’re looking at treatment for cosmetic reasons or due to functional concerns, people describe treatment helps them:
At Palm Clinic, Auckland, NZ we discuss treatment options openly with our clients. We’ve heard every concern and worry there is around growing older and we strive to break down the stigma around cosmetic treatments.
Often our clients prefer a non-surgical, subtle improvement to their droopy eyes. This can often be achieved with the use of Botox® and Dermal Fillers. The Botox® relaxes the muscles that pull down on the eyebrows and eyelids allowing the levator muscle to act unopposed, and Dermal Fillers are injected beneath the skin to support the brow, lifting the brow and lids up.
When you have severe ptosis, Blepharoplasty (ptosis surgery) is a common, minimally invasive surgery to remove excess or saggy eyelid skin and the underlying tissue, creating a more youthful, open-eyed result. You can read more about blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery) on our Palm Clinic Auckland, NZ individual treatment page.
Botox® is a prescription medicine for the treatment of frown lines, horizontal forehead lines and crow’s feet round the eyes. Botox® has risks and benefits. Ask your doctor if Botox® is right for you. If you have side effects, see your doctor. You will need to pay for Botox® and clinic fees will apply. For details on precautions & side effects consult your healthcare professional or the Consumer Medicine Information (CMI) at www.medsafe.govt.nz. Botox® treatment lasts about 4 months and further courses of treatment may be necessary. Should only be administered by trained medical professionals.(Contains botulinum toxin A 50,100 & 200 units). Allergan (NZ) Limited, Auckland.
Juvederm Ultra™ & Juvederm Ultra Plus™ are medical devices Class III for the filling of medium size and deep facial wrinkles by injection into the skin and for creating definition and volume in the lips. Contains 24mg/mL. cross-linked hyaluronic acid. Juvederm has risks and benefits. Cautions: Use in an area that has been treated with another dermal filler, people with autoimmune disease, or who are pregnant, breastfeeding, under 18 years of age or have an increased susceptibility to keloid formation and hypertrophic scarring. People on blood thinning medicines. Possible side effects: injection site inflammatory reactions (redness/swelling, itching/pain on pressure) induration or nodules; discolouration; weak filling effect. If you have side effects or concerns speak to your doctor. Product and treatment costs will apply. Note: Juvederm treatment lasts about 12-24 months. For product information check with your doctor or product information at Allergan (NZ) Limited, Auckland.
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Please note that individual results may vary from patient to patient, and the information provided on our website is only a guidance to the possible results.