It is key to understand that the process of recovery after plastic surgery is different from person to person. It is also dependent on the type of surgery you undergo, and if there are multiple procedures being performed on the same day.
With the physical aspects of recovery aside, it is also important to think about the possible emotional issues that may arise following surgery. It is critical not to rush your recovery and to give yourself the proper time to heal. Here are some things you should know regarding your journey post Plastic Surgery and prepare you for a safe, comfortable, and successful recovery:
1. If you endure any facial-type procedure, including a Rhinoplasty (nose surgery), Blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery), Brow, Face, or Neck Lift, it is helpful to try to decrease swelling and bruising by applying ice. It is also best to have your head elevated to decrease swelling, and allow more comfort.
2. Plan, calculate, and prepare the appropriate amount of time for your recovery. I always try to over-estimate the days of recovery for a patient, rather than under estimate. I find that patients are far more forgiving when I do. They are not disappointed by additional unexpected days that they might be out of work, or back to “normal” day-to-day living. Recovery time could range from a few days, to a few weeks. You should be sure to discuss this with your doctor and/or staff. Let them know what your daily schedule consists of so they can help you properly prepare.
3. I have always found this to be the ultimate golden rule:
Be realistic in your expectations. Before the beautiful butterfly develops, it must first be bundled in a cocoon. The message here is that you might need time to hibernate and be patient before you start seeing an improvement. Often after surgery, things look and feel worse before they start to get much better. Patience is a virtue. Expect bruising. Expect swelling. Expect that things won’t look the way you want them to right away, but that they will with time. Of course, if you suspect a problem, or complication, contact your surgeon/staff without delay.
4. Follow the guidelines giving by your treating surgeon(s). Whether it’s about taking prescribed medications, hygiene care, wound care, exercise, sun exposure, etc.. Your surgeon/staff can provide the most helpful advice for your safety, wellness, and most trouble-free recovery.
5. Arrange for someone to be with you for the first 24 to 72 hours following surgery. Even if you think you can handle your normal activities and care on your own, having someone who is able to assist you will give you calmness, reassurance, and if needed, a helping-hand. If you do not have someone able to care for you following surgery, be sure to tell your surgeon(s) and/or staff as they will likely know of care-givers and/or surgical aftercare facilities they can recommend for you! Aftercare facilities (such as Pearl Recovery Retreat) will have trained nurses pick you up from the surgery center and transport you to a local hotel where you will have 24/7 nursing care. I have always found that patients that go to an aftercare following surgery never regret it!
6. Drink plenty of fluids following surgery. Surgery of any kind can dehydrate you. Drinking plenty of water will help replenish any depleted body fluids and help flush out your system. Additionally, a light, bland, easy-to-chew and swallow diet is recommended for the first few days. Up the fiber. Constipation can sometimes occur following surgery, so increasing fiber should help you with this issue.
7. Be sure not to take medications or supplements that can make you more susceptible to bleeding/bruising. These include medications like aspirin or anti-inflammatory medications (Ibuprofen, Aleve, etc) . Be sure to check with your doctor about which over-the-counter and prescription medicines you should avoid during recovery.
8. Compression is crucial. Following many Plastic Surgery procedures, compression is essential. This helps decrease swelling and facilitate adequate shape and contour to your surgical results. Never remove bandages or compression unless instructed by your surgeon(s)/staff.
To find out more about your plastic surgery recovery,
call Beverly Hills Plastic Surgery Group 310.853.5147