Fresh from surgery and chances are, you’re not feeling so flash. There’s no denying that recovering from any major surgery comes with a lot of discomfort and pain. To get back to looking and feeling fantastic again, it’s crucial you prepare for your recovery process and understand what to expect well in advance.
Whilst the recovery time can vary between patients, it averages from two weeks to 3 months. How you allow your body to recovery throughout these stages will determine the outcome from the procedure. The less there is to worry about after your procedure, the more time you can spend recouping. And the better recovery you’ll experience! Here’s a few tips to get you started:
The first step to a good recovery is understanding the two major stages post breast augmentation. As the effects of the aesthetic wear off, you’ll experience severe grogginess. Swelling, bruising, soreness and discomfort are all normal feelings during the first stage. It’s important to follow your doctor’s instructions when you go home and keep bandages on for a couple of days, or at least until your post-op appointment.
Pain is common around the chest area and some patients will feel like they’ve done a full day of push-ups. This is because the chest muscles have been stretched during the procedure and take time to heal. Moving your arms, getting in and out of the chair, coughing, washing your hair, picking up small children and all the little things in between, will feel uncomfortable for the first week.
Post Op: Stage Two
As your body recovers, a level of pain and discomfort can still be common. Pain can vary depending on whether the implants have been placed under the muscle or over it. Implants under the muscle will cause more pressure and discomfort to the chest muscles, whilst those placed underneath will just have soreness and pressure (no sore muscles).
Sensitivity of your nipples and breasts are common post-surgery expectations too. Your skin will also feel tight as it adjusts to the new breast size and implants. If you experience any redness or fever, make sure you speak to your doctor. Don’t forget, your breasts won’t begin to take a more settled appearance until the 6-week mark.
Wear the Right Support
Throughout both stages of recovery, make sure you invest in the right support. Hospital post-surgery compression bandages will get you through the first few days, but after that you’ll need some fitting and comfortable. Post-surgical bras especially designed for such procedures will support your new curves. Avoid wearing any bras with underwiring until the recovery period is over. Some patients may find it too uncomfortable to wear a bra, but making sure your breasts have adequate support is important to the recovery. Thus, post-surgical bras or compression bandages are best with loose fitting clothing.
Avoid High Intensity Exercises
If you led an active lifestyle before surgery, chances are you want to get back into things as soon as possible. High intensity workouts are a big no-no though. It’s always advised to check with your doctor before you start back into your regular workout routine, but undergoing gentle exercises during the recover process can be good for the circulation and eliminate the risk of blood clots.
But nothing strenuous! Instead, focus on getting up and going for short walks around the house every hour or two. Once you’ve cleared the 2-week mark, exercise can be gradually increased to walking uphill or a gentle walking workout on the treadmill. Regular workouts shouldn’t be attempted until after 6-weeks or when cleared by doctors. Stay clear of any heavy lifting until this time, even if you’re feeling fab at one month. It goes without saying then, that if you can’t do high intensity exercises, you should refrain from smoking and drinking post-surgery too.
Be Wary of Sleeping Positions
Sleeping post-surgery can be a blessing and a curse! A healthy dose of sleep is vital to the recovery process, so rest up whenever possible. Patients commonly find sleeping positions uncomfortable after a breast augmentation however, so have some great support pillows ready to go.
Wedge plush pillow and curvy pillows will help to support you as you sleep. The best way to lie for post breast augmentation patients on your back, as sleeping face down can cause the implants to deform during recovery. Sleeping sideways in the first two weeks can lead to the dropping of the breast, so keep it to a minimum.
Set up a Recovery Station
Get yourself ready with a recovery station to ensure all essentials are within an arm’s reach. This may include oral pain medication prescribed by your doctor, plenty of water to stay hydrated, phone charger and phone, tissues and cleaning tools to keep your incisions well-looked after and anything else that will help you recoup better.
For many women, breast augmentation can be the start of a whole new life. Feel better and look amazing faster by following your doctor’s advice, being alert for complications and relaxing. Stress interferes with healing so as long as you’re supported and well-rested, you should be to your wonderful self in no time.
This article is written by Jayde Ferguson, who writes for Bodyment – the leaders of compression hosiery designed for breast augmentation or maternity patients, supporting thousands of Australians and Health Professionals every day. You can catch Jayde on Google+.
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