Imagine a wide-open week filled with rest and relaxation. Add in a few bandages and a post-operative visit or two, and you’re describing plastic surgery recovery. With a little preparation, recovery can be an enjoyable experience.
Get ready for your recovery by making sure you have these 9 essentials on hand and ready to use. Recovery instructions vary slightly from procedure to procedure, but these basic guidelines are useful for almost every procedure we offer from rhinoplasty to tummy tuck and almost everything in between.
Do you have a favorite pair of sweatpants? If not, it is time to find one. After surgery, you’re going to love your loungewear. Stock up on comfy clothes so you’ll have a spare set or two.
After cosmetic breast surgery, it can be difficult to lift your arms temporarily; button-up or zip-up tops are easy to put on and take off. We also recommend soft pants with a loose, elastic waistband and supportive, slip-on shoes. You will want to minimize the amount of movement necessary for you to put on and take off clothes for a few days after your surgery.
Lots and Lots of Pillows
Elevating your head is helpful after many facial plastic surgery procedures, including rhinoplasty or facelift. After breast and body procedures, pillows are helpful for positioning so you can comfortably sleep. Make sure you’ve got several extra pillows available and ready to use and ask our staff for expert tips on comfortable positioning while you heal.
A Well-Stocked Fridge
You may not be up to cooking for the first several days after surgery. Stock your fridge with easy to prepare options. Many of our patients prep extra when cooking in the weeks before surgery to fill their freezer so they can easily reheat meals during recovery.
In addition to your favorite healthy foods, have a few options on hand that are gentle for an irritated tummy. Some patients feel nauseous after anesthesia or when using pain medications. Ginger ale, applesauce, bananas, rice, and crackers are foods that many patients enjoy when they feel nauseous after surgery.
Don’t forget lots of clear liquids so you’ll stay hydrated.
Prescription and Over-the-Counter Medications
We’ll provide you prescriptions for pain medications and antibiotics, if needed, before your surgery. Get these filled in advance if possible. No one wants to hang out at the pharmacy after surgery waiting for medications.
After the first few days, most patients don’t require prescription pain relief and easily manage discomfort using over-the-counter options. Make sure you have ibuprofen and acetaminophen on hand. When used in combination, these are powerful medications that can enhance your comfort while you heal.
Contact Information for Your Surgeon
We’ll make sure you know how to reach us at all times right after your surgery. We’re here and ready to help if you need us. Keep our phone numbers handy and get in touch with any questions or concerns throughout the recovery process.
As you prepare for plastic surgery, enlist friends and family to be part of your care team. You’ll need some help after surgery including:
- Someone to drive you home on surgery day
- A trusted adult to stay with you for the first one to two days
- Help with kids, if you have young ones at home
- Assistance around the house with cleaning, shopping, etc.
- Someone to drive you to/from post-surgical appointments until you’re off pain medications and able to drive
Try to arrange the help you need before your procedure so you aren’t struggling to find a ride or childcare at the last minute.
Clear your calendar! Plastic surgery recovery usually requires a little downtime. We’ll tell you how many days you’ll need off from work before your procedure so you can plan. For most of our procedures, one to two weeks off from work is standard.
During recovery, what your body needs most is rest. Avoid the temptation to overschedule or return to work too soon. Kick back, relax, and enjoy the downtime.
You’ll have lots of free time during recovery, so use it wisely. Is there a show you’ve been wanting to binge? Maybe a new novel you’ve been eyeing?
Although you’ll need extra sleep for the first week or two, you’ll also have plenty of time for some of your favorite low-impact activities, like reading and watching movies or TV.
A Positive Attitude
Recovery is often the most challenging part of the plastic surgery process, but it also means you’re almost there. Look forward to your results and remember, recovery moves quickly. Soon you’ll be enjoying perkier breasts or a flatter tummy. You can do this, and when you do, you’re going to love the results.
Call 704-659-9000 to contact H/K/B in Charlotte, NC and learn more about the many surgical and non-surgical cosmetic treatments we offer.