The tummy tuck is a very effective and reliable plastic surgery procedure to contour your abdomen. Factors like aging, pregnancy, weight fluctuations, and genetics make the abdomen saggy and loose over time. When the abdomen becomes saggy, it makes your overall body look unwelcoming. This is the reason why many women experience lower self-esteem and suffer from emotional pain when their abdomen becomes saggy.
Women considering the tummy tuck procedure often want to know how they can speed up the healing process after a tummy tuck. It is worth noting here that the tummy tuck is a major operation and the risks associated with the procedure are relatively greater and serious. In this article, we’ll discuss ways you can quickly and properly heal after the tummy tuck surgery.
Your diet before and after the surgery
While you may think that you are going to get an amazingly beautiful body after the tummy tuck procedure, you still need to watch out for the foods you eat. Yes, it is absolutely right that you are what you eat. You need to be careful about your diet before and after the tummy tuck. Before the surgery, you should include vegetables, fruits, nuts, juices, protein, and other healthy items in your diet. This will ready your body to endure the surgical trauma and heal quickly and properly after the procedure.
If you are taking any medications, do bring it to the knowledge of your surgeon. You may be told to cut down on the medications or stop taking them altogether. This is very important for a speedy healing. For example, if you are taking blood thinners, it will delay the healing process after the surgery. You should, therefore, stop taking medications that make your blood thinner.
A healthy diet is very important after the surgery. You should work with a professional dietician to make a diet plan and follow it religiously. Be sure to stay away from unhealthy foods like junk and fatty foods after a tummy tuck. Vegetables, fruits, and proteins will help in collagen production that would, in turn, expedite your healing process.
Stay safe from potential infections
Infection is the most common problem that can delay the healing process. It can even negatively affect the healing quality and trigger a host of other health complications.
After the tummy tuck, your body will be highly susceptible to potential infections. You must be sure to keep your body clean and stay away from unhygienic places. If your surgeon has prescribed you antibiotics, be sure to take them on time.
Also, your doctor may tell you to take a bath with a chlorhexidine solution because it will decrease your risk of contracting infections. Remember, infections have the potential to slow down your healing process after the tummy tuck, so you should do everything to prevent infections.
Take a lot of rest
The recovery period after tummy tuck can last for 2-4 weeks. During this period, you must take a lot of rest. Of course, you can take slow and short walks once after a few hours every day to prevent blood clotting. However, you should not resume work immediately. In fact, you may be able to go to work after one week, but be sure to avoid physically demanding activities. Ideally, you should take two weeks off work to rest and recovery after the tummy tuck.
Physical activities can slow down the healing process. You should be sure to avoid activities like stretching, jumping, bending, running, weight lifting, exercises, and sports for the first six weeks after the tummy tuck surgery. This is very important. Not following this instruction will have negative effects on your surgical wounds. Even wound splitting may occur. This will delay your healing process by several weeks, and you may even land in a hospital to treat any associated complication that may prop up.
You should take a lot of rest to recover quickly and properly. Also, make sure to avoid resting or sleeping on your front or abdomen for the first few weeks after the surgery. You must be sure to keep any pressure or force off your tummy. Not doing so will delay the healing process.
Avoid smoking and alcohol
Smoking and alcohol have the tendency to drastically slow down your healing process and lead to a number of health complications. Remember, the tummy tuck is a major operation, so you should be sure to stop smoking and alcohol intake a few weeks before the surgery. Also, make sure to stay away from smoking and alcohol for at least two months after the tummy tuck.
Your body becomes bruised and traumatized as a result of the surgery. It needs fresh oxygen to heal and recovery. When you feed your body smoke and alcohol, it will slow down the healing process. The carbon monoxide and tar in the smoke will trigger blood clotting, which will, in turn, stop oxygen and fresh blood from flowing to the surgical wounds. Also, the blood clotting may result in a heart attack or stroke. This is the reason why it is always advised to avoid smoking and alcohol before and after the tummy tuck.
Wear the recommended compression garments
After the tummy tuck, your plastic surgeon may recommend you to wear compression garments. This is a very important advice, and you must follow it because it will speed up the healing process and keep you safe from many risks. The special garment may be a wide abdominal binder or a girdle. When you wear a compression garment, it will keep your newly contoured abdomen intact. It will also help ward off any pressure or force besides protecting your from infections and containing the post-surgical swelling. You should wear the garments for the recommended time period. Not wearing the compression garments will result in slower and poor healing.
Drink a lot of water
Water is the best element to detoxify the body. You should make sure to drink a lot of water during the recovery process. The water will make the recovery smoother and safer besides preventing bloating, constipation, and other health issues. During the recovery process, you would be resting in bed for most of the time. This increases the risk of health problems like constipation. Water will not only remove the toxins from your body and expedite the healing process, but it will also keep your body hydrated and prevent constipation.
Avoid sun exposure
Exposure to the sun and other forms of direct health is detrimental to the healing process after the tummy tuck. Sun exposure cannot only drastically slow down the healing process but also result in profound, unwelcoming scarring. It is very important, therefore, to stay indoors during the recovery process. Even after the first few weeks, when you go out, cover your body properly. You should avoid direct sun exposure of your abdomen for the first six months after the tummy tuck.
Use any ointments recommended by your surgeon
There are certain antibiotic ointments that can speed up the healing process and prevent infections. However, you should use them only after the approval of your plastic surgeon. Some examples of such ointments include Bacitracin and Neosporin. These medications, if used with the surgeon’s instructions, will help you heal quickly and beautifully. Always go with your surgeon’s advice.
Stay happy and have a positive frame of mind
During the recovery period, you may experience emotional pain, loneliness, sadness, or even mild depressions. This has the potential to slow down the healing process. Of course, everything naturally comes down to your mind in the end. If you maintain a positive frame of mind and realistic expectations, you will heal quickly.
Stay happy and use deep breathing and mind distractions methods to overcome your anxiety, fear, and sadness during the recovery period. Your favorite movies, books, magazines, Internet access, and television can be helpful resources to keep you entertained and engaged during the recovery period. Remember, it is normally to have the above-mentioned feelings; however, you should prevent them from happening because they can slow down the healing process.
After the tummy tuck surgery, you may experience pain and discomforts for the first 24-72 hours. You must make sure to manage the pain before it becomes intense. There are patients who ignore the doctor’s instructions; however, they may suffer from intense pain, which results in body movements. This can negatively affect the incisions. You must take any pain relief medications prescribed to you to heal faster and properly.
Before leaving the hospital following your tummy tuck surgery, your surgeon will provide you many instructions and advises to follow for a smooth recovery. In most cases, the instructions would include the tips given above. It is very important to follow the advice of your surgeon to speed up the healing process.
You should be sure to avoid anything that has the potential to affect your healing process or the surgical wound. Instead, take a lot of rest and follow the instructions provided by your doctor and those explained above to have a quick, smooth, and safe recovery.
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