When chosen for the right reasons, cosmetic surgery can greatly enhance your confidence and self-image by facilitating improvement in body image. The choice to undergo plastic surgery is a serious and important undertaking; selecting the correct doctor and preparing yourself both mentally and physically, will make the experience safer, more predictable, and easier to recover from. Proper preparation for plastic surgery is critical to ensure that you are optimally ready to do your part during the recovery period, helping to ensure that your procedure goes smoothly and meets expectations.
Maintain Your Physical Health
Before your surgery, it is important to remember that the better your health is, the easier your recovery and more predictable your results will be. Plastic surgery is real surgery. Because it is so commonly elective, there is no reason for surgery to feel rushed. Taking adequate time to ensure that your health and fitness are optimized, before being exposed to anesthesia, incisions that require healing, and a physical recovery of some degree, is fundamentally important to consider prior to determining the ideal timing for surgery. Pre-existing conditions, such as high blood pressure and diabetes, may increase the risk of complications if these conditions are not under good medical control. In addition to your physical health, it’s recommended that you be at a stable weight. Not every patient can reach their ideal weight prior to surgery, but results are optimized and safer when severe weight issues are managed prior to surgery, specifically with body contouring procedures like liposuction and tummy tuck type procedures. No plastic surgery procedure is designed as an alternative to weight loss and should never be thought of as a replacement for proper diet or exercise. Efforts aimed at weighing near your ideal body weight will allow you to witness better results that are long-lasting.
Stop Tobacco Use
No other activity increases your chance for risks and complications both during and after your operation more than tobacco use. Smokers have a much higher chance of experiencing a complication and have an increased chance of wound healing concerns and subsequent adverse scarring after the procedure. Nicotine decreases blood flow and the amount of oxygen that is in the blood and skin, and this can make it difficult for surgical wounds to heal (or heal well). Quitting nicotine even a month before your operation date significantly improves the levels of oxygen in the blood and your body’s ability to fight off bacteria and infection. Some procedures are safe for smokers and other procedures are not able to be performed on smokers. Due to blood supply considerations with these specific procedures, Dr. Cohn does not perform facelifts, tummy tucks, or breast reductions on individuals who are actively smoking.
Ready Yourself and Your House
Preparation is a critical factor for a smooth recovery. Before your surgery, make sure that you:
- Fill all of your prescriptions
- Have someone drive you home and stay with you for the first night
- Schedule at-home help to assist you with everyday chores, such as cooking, cleaning, and childcare, if necessary
- Establish a stress-free, comfortable environment in which to rest and recover
If you are ready to start your plastic surgery journey, contact Dr. Al Cohn to set up a complimentary consultation by calling his office at (205) 930-1600.