Planning some plastic or cosmetic surgery this year? Read our 7 top tips for getting into the best possible shape for recovery.
1. Plan ahead
Make sure you have plenty of time to plan for your surgery so you can prepare yourself properly. It’s important to have all the facts about the procedure you’re undertaking – including the potential risks and complications.
Carefully follow your surgeon’s advice pre-surgery, and ensure that you have stocked up on all the things you’ll need at home to assist with recovery; things such as cold compresses, pain relief, any bandages, gels or creams that are advised post operation.
Ask your surgeon if there are other patients you can talk to who’ve had the same surgery – this will give you different perspectives on what you can expect and suggestions you might find useful for preparation and recovery.
2. Start moving
There’s no doubting the vast amount of medical evidence which suggests that the fitter you are beforehand, the better (and quicker) your recovery will be, no matter what kind of surgery you’re undertaking. Surgery of any kind puts stress on the body, so it’s best to get into some healthy exercise habits beforehand. You might not be able to go back to a full programme of physical activity for some time after surgery, but usually gentle exercise, like walking, is recommended. If you get started with a regular exercise programme well in advance of your surgery you will be much better off after the surgery.
3. Change your lifestyle
Quitting smoking is vital. So is cutting down your alcohol intake. Both of these habits can have a serious adverse affect on the outcomes of your surgery. For best results, and for the sake of your long-term health, give both of them the boot.
4. Eat well
Along with your lifestyle, the foods you eat can have an impact on your body’s ability to recover. Start some healthy eating habits before surgery by boosting your fruit and vegie intake and cutting down on fats and sugars.
This will make you feel more energetic and your body will be in better shape to begin the healing process post cosmetic surgery. If you’re considering taking supplements you need to discuss these with your surgeon as some might not be advisable immediately pre and post-op. Also make sure you talk to your surgeon about any medications you regularly take.
Work, family commitments and life in general can be stressful. Make sure you have the appropriate time to recover – don’t rush back to work. If you need to get extra help at home while you recouperate then get this organised well in advance so there’s no fuss when the time comes.
In the immediate days post-surgery, you’ll need to devote all of your time to recovery, so make sure you allow yourself the time and space to do this.
6. Sleep soundly
As much as food and exercise impact your body’s ability to recover, so does sleep. If you don’t have good sleeping habits, start some before surgery. Resting and sleeping are critical to helping the body to heal.
7. Be mindful
While it’s important to be in the best possible shape physically for surgery, it is also important to prepare yourself mentally. Sometimes people forget that the full and final results of cosmetic surgery are not always visible for a few weeks after the operation. Remember, initial bruising and swelling is par for the course. If you are having surgery that will alter your appearance, make sure that you are mentally prepared for the ‘new you’ in the mirror.
Some patients can get depressed post-surgery. Sometimes this is an after-affect of the anaesthetic and pain relief medication, sometimes it is because they were not fully prepared for the changes to their appearance. Talk to your plastic surgeon about this beforehand and make sure that you are well supported emotionally in the weeks post-op, and get professional help if you need it. Your emotional and mental recovery is as important as your physical recovery.
To talk about any aspects of your upcoming surgery, call our team to make an appointment with one of our experienced plastic surgeons on 02 9252 9262 or get in touch via our enquiry form.