Most patients deciding to take the plastic surgery step focus on choosing the right surgeon and educating themselves about their procedure. While these are both very important steps to a safe and successful surgery, what you do after your procedure is just as important. Post-care will make all the difference in how your body heals and how your results develop. To ensure this process is successful, Robinson Facial Plastic Surgery has a few tips on how to prepare for your post-care and the recovery process overall.
The Early Days
The first few days after surgery are typically the most difficult for patients. This is the time when pain, swelling and bruising will be at their worst. The best thing you can do for yourself during these early days is to relax and enjoy the quiet time as much as you can. Catch up on your reading or your favorite television programs. Allow others to care for you as you focus on your rest and recuperation.
During that first week, it will be very important to follow your post-operative instructions to the letter. This includes taking prescribed medications to help you manage pain and prevent infection. You may also be instructed to use ice packs on the surgical area to minimize swelling. This step is essential in not only keeping swelling down but your pain level as well. Dietary restrictions should also be followed and liquid consumption is typically encouraged since hydration leads to a healthier healing process.
Taking it Easy
You may start to feel like taking on your daily activities sooner than your doctor wants you to. It is important to understand that lack of pain does not mean that you are completely healed and able to resume normal activities. While most patients can head back to light activities as soon as they feel ready, more strenuous jobs and exercise should be put off much longer. Our rule of thumb is not to lift anything heavier than an iPad, and bend at the knees (not the waist) when bending over. If you exert yourself too soon after surgery, you could cause yourself to experience complications like bleeding or swelling.
It is not unusual for patients to experience a degree of depression as they go through the healing process. In most cases, you will look worse before you look better and this can be discouraging for some patients. The isolation of the recovery process, combined with some swelling and other side effects of surgery, can also make you feel unlike yourself for a period of time. Rest assured that most patients will come out of their mild depression within a few short weeks after surgery. Use that time to practice exceptionally good self-care that will help your body heal well.
One thing that can make your recovery process infinitely easier is planning ahead for those few weeks after surgery. Have your house cleaned and put a few meals in the freezer so you don’t have to worry about your regular chores during recovery. Stock up on a few of your favorite treats and make sure you have some books, movies or other quiet activities on hand to enjoy while you wait out your recuperation.
Plastic surgery is a big decision that takes considerable thought and planning. Make sure that process includes planning ahead for your recovery process as well, so your time after surgery is as pleasant and successful as possible. If you would like to learn more about how to have a successful recovery from plastic surgery, contact Robinson Facial Plastic Surgery today at 770-667-3090