Like every other part of the body, the lower eyelids are affected by the aging process. The weakening of muscles, fatty deposits and genetics all conspire to put the wrinkles in your skin and the bags under your eyes. Although most medical experts agree that pronounced under-eye bags can be eliminated only through plastic surgery, there are alternative non-surgical approaches that may help reduce the swelling associated with under-eye bags and help improve the appearance of your eyes.
Get more sleep. Most health experts recommend at least seven to nine hours of sleep each day. Sleeping on your side or with the head slightly elevated promotes nasal drainage and helps prevent fluid from accumulating around the eyes, causing swelling.
Change your diet. Monitor salt intake and do not exceed the American Heart Association's recommended upper limit of 1,500 mg a day. Too much salt promotes fluid retention, which is often an underlying cause of under-eye bags. Select whole foods rich in nutrients, such as raw vegetables and fruit. Drink the doctor-recommend eight or nine cups of water a day. Avoid foods and beverages that contribute to fluid retention, such as processed foods, alcohol and coffee.
Exercise the muscles around the eyes. Incorporating daily facial exercises that specifically tighten and improve the circulation of the ring of muscles around the eyes may help to reduce the appearance of under-eye bags.
Use acupressure. Place an index finger on each side of your nostrils and gently apply pressure for about 10 seconds, either maintaining that pressure or moving the fingertips in circular motions. Repeat five times. According to Facial Exercises Guide.com, this gentle massage will release toxins that contribute to the buildup of under-eye bags.
Apply a cold compress. Place a dry hand towel in the freezer and allow it to chill. Remove the chilled towel, lie down and place it over the eyes for about 15 minutes. Repeat twice a day. Cold helps to reduce swelling.
Apply cold cucumber slices. Place two cucumber slices in the freezer for 30 minutes. Remove from freezer, lie down and apply to closed eyes for 15 minutes.
Consult a plastic surgeon or dermatologist to determine if you are a healthy candidate for a Botox treatment. Injected with a needle into fill the under-eye bags, Botox usually starts to work in 24 to 36 hours, although the full effect may take a week to 14 days. The results last four to six months. Costs for the Botox procedure can range from $377 to $510.
Lower eyelid blepharoplasty: This surgery will remove the under-eye wrinkles and excess folds of skin and give a lift to the eyes.
Consult a plastic surgeon to determine if you are a healthy candidate for this cosmetic surgery. It is usually performed on an outpatient basis and under local anesthesia. Expect bruising and swelling after the operation.
The average cost of blepharoplasty is $3,000, according to currenthealtharticles.org.