Cosmetic Surgery Recovery
Everyone wants to know about their recovery and when they can resume their regular routines. This will contain sound advice for the recovering cosmetic surgery patient.
The First Few Days
Expect to look worse before you look better. Nearly all cosmetic surgery procedures involve swelling and bruising. You may even look unsightly temporarily. As swelling and bruising fades, you will begin to see results.
If you had cosmetic surgery on your face or neck, keep your head elevated for at least two or three days to minimize swelling and speed recovery. Do not underestimate the importance of elevation. It will reduce your recovery time, whereas failure to do so may create disturbing asymmetries and prolonged swelling.
may advise you to apply an ice pack or iced washcloth to the surgical site. Since the swelling peaks at two to three days, application of ice during this period will limit your swelling. Failure to apply ice following some procedures may result in extensive or prolonged swelling. Check with Dr. Serota to see if ice packs are recommended for your cosmetic surgery procedure.
Dr. Serota will usually remove your bandages during the first office visit. This office visit is called a follow up visit. They are important to your well-being and they’re often made for you at the same time as your surgical appointment – keep them! The stitches will be removed in 5-10 days or more, depending on location. (Absorbable stitches will not require removal.)
At the end of some cosmetic surgery procedures, Dr. Serota may place a drain, which is a small pliable plastic tube connected to a section reservoir. It evacuates fluid from under your skin and prevents fluid collections called seromas. Drain removal is performed in the office a few days after surgery and may cause brief discomfort.
Ask Dr. Serota when you may shower, bathe and wash your hair. Often this is allowed within a day or two of surgery. There are exceptions.
Makeup may be worn five to 10 days after facial surgery. Exceptions are laser resurfacing, phenol peel and Dermabrasion, which require about two weeks without makeup.
You will be able tobetween three days and two weeks following most cosmetic operations, depending on procedure and occupation.
Discomfort ranges from minimal following smaller procedures to significant following the larger cosmetic surgery procedures. It is also highly variable from person to person. For example, most women find that a facelift involves minimal discomfort. However, some find that their facelift was very uncomfortable for a period time.
DO NOT drive while you are taking pain medication because it will alter your judgment and delay your responses. Following most operations, you will be able to drive once you have stopped taking pain medication. Exceptions to the rule exist for tummy tuck, thigh lift and body lift, which may require two to four weeks of recovery.
Tips for Faster Recovery
You may encounter advice from well-meaning friends regarding medications to expedite your recovery. Some remedies may have merit, some do not, and some are disputed among cosmetic surgeons. Always discuss them with Dr. Serota before taking them.
To find out more about our cosmetic procedures please contact us or take our online cosmetic self evaluation to find out what procedures might be best for you. To schedule your personal consultation with the Advanced Cosmetic Surgery Center in Aurora, Colorado call 303-367-9000.