By Sacha Obaid
After plastic surgery, it can be tempting to hop back on your feet to make up for time lost during the procedure, start getting your post-procedure body in shape, and show it off!
Here are the top seven things to do when recovering from plastic surgery:
1. Manage your expectations.
Do your best to have an understanding of what your plastic surgery procedure will accomplish. Do research beforehand by consulting with doctors to find the right one, speaking with people who’ve had the procedure you desire, and looking at before-and-after pictures.
Managing your expectations also applies to recovery. Understand the intensity of your recovery, how long you will have to take it easy, and any swelling or bruising that may result. Remember, healing is different for everyone.
Asking questions of your surgeon and fully understanding what to expect can ensure you’re happy and satisfied with your recovery and your results.
2. Start the healing process before the procedure even begins.
With proper diet, exercise, and bodily care before your plastic surgery procedure, you’ll heal much quicker after the procedure. Prep can include proper meals, cutting back on caffeine and alcohol, taking vitamins, and more. Your surgeon can definitely make recommendations.
3. Follow your doctor’s instructions.
This can range from what supplements to discontinue before surgery to how long to stay off your feet after surgery to how to apply ice to the treated area, and more. Be sure to get your doctor’s approval before vigorous exercise, as this could cause swelling or bleeding if done too soon. Doctors have specialized training in recovery and know what’s best for you.
4. Plan your downtime.
Let friends and family know you’ll be resting for a little while, and ask them to help with the kids, household chores, and activities. Also have someone available to help you do most activities, such as eating and walking, during the first 24 to 48 hours after your procedure.
5. Drink plenty of fluids.
This will help you to stay hydrated and contribute to a balanced diet, likely speeding up the healing process.
6. Talk to someone if you have concerns.
Sometimes people who undergo a plastic surgery procedure feel a little down afterwards. This could be because of the length of recovery, stress, or because sometimes the area can appear worse before it looks better.
Feeling a bit of sadness after a plastic surgery procedure is something many people experience, but it doesn’t last forever, and you don’t have to be alone! Let someone know how you’re feeling, so they can support you.
7. Remember the four cardinal rules when recovering from skin procedures:
- Baby your skin using non-soap cleansers and fragrance-free moisturizers.
- Protect yourself from the sun – Avoid the sun altogether for the first few days, and then use SPF 30 to 40.
- Do not pick at scabs or touch peeling skin.
- Hydrate! Drink six to eight glasses of water a day.
The healing process is a very personal thing – it can depend on the type of procedure you had, your age, and your health prior to surgery. There is no blanket amount of time in which everyone heals and no one way that everyone feels after surgery. The most important things are to know what to expect, to contact your doctor if you have concerns, and to be enthusiastic about your new self!