Optimizing Your Recovery Journey

A head start on the recovery process makes a difference in how you heal and when you can get back to daily life. To maximize health and wellbeing, proper planning starts long before surgery. Taking your recovery seriously will provide the best possible results. 

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What To Stop Weeks Before Surgery

Preparing for surgery happens weeks before the actual procedure. Before adding or restricting certain foods and medications, however, it is important to have a medical screening. This allows the surgical staff to collect information about your medical history. 

Medications, allergies, and prior health conditions can all affect the safety of the procedure and must be disclosed. There are also a few substances you should stop using in the weeks before the surgery. 

Smoking and Products Containing Nicotine

Smoking before surgery can cause complications during the procedure and affect healing. It is the nicotine, not necessarily the tobacco itself, that causes a prolonged recovery. This means that other forms of nicotine carry the same risk as cigarettes. Nicotine gum and vaping will increase the chances of developing surgical complications.

Smoking should be eliminated at least several weeks before the new jersey rhinoplasty. This may be difficult because nicotine patches and other substitutes should not be used during this time. Finding support or a hands-on distraction may help for the weeks leading up to rhinoplasty.

Quitting nicotine completely will dramatically decrease the risks that come with anesthesia. Since carbon monoxide from smoking lowers blood oxygen levels, the heart and lungs need to work much harder under anesthesia. Without nicotine, the consistency and flow of blood is considered much safer during surgery.

It is recommended that patients stop using nicotine products at least four weeks prior to the surgery. By abstaining from nicotine, patients can avoid excessive bleeding, scarring, and delayed healing. Nicotine levels can still be detected two weeks after a patient has had their last cigarette. 

Over-the-Counter Drugs, Prescription Drugs, and Supplements

Both prescription and non-prescription drugs can negatively impact surgical safety. Even relatively harmless medications like Aspirin may cause problems during rhinoplasty, due to increased bleeding risks. Alka-Seltzer products, Excedrin, and Pepto-Bismol are just a few OTC drugs that should be avoided. 

Ibuprofen is known to affect how the platelets work. If the blood does not clot during surgery, it can be extremely dangerous. Experts advise that patients stop taking these OTC drugs approximately one to two weeks before the rhinoplasty. Even after surgery, many physicians recommend avoiding medications like aspirin until healing is complete.

Herbal supplements and certain vitamin supplements (such as vitamin E) should also be stopped in advance of any cosmetic surgery. Although these supplements do not require a prescription, they can affect a patient’s safety during surgery. Herbal supplements such as echinacea, ephedra, and ginseng, also have an effect on blood clotting.

Transportation After Rhinoplasty

Driving after surgery is prohibited. This is because anesthesia is used during the procedure and will still affect the body for a while after the surgery. 

Before surgery, arrange for a ride home from a friend or family member. Many patients feel disoriented after surgery and will not have the reflexes needed to safely drive home or to the pharmacy. Even if a patient feels steady and alert, driving is not recommended.

Rest is an important part of the recovery process. Directly after the procedure, it is often helpful for patients to have a family member or friend stay with them. Anesthesia lasts for multiple hours, but the exact time is based on the patient’s health history, the surgery, and the anesthesiologist. Even after the anesthesia has completely worn off, it is still best if someone else can drive to the pharmacy and help with any basic tasks.

For patients who are traveling, flying is often an overlooked restriction. For at least one week after surgery, patients should not fly regardless of the plane size. A lack of air pressure can increase swelling. 

If traveling is required for work or personal reasons, driving is a safer option after the procedure.

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Taking Time Off From Work or School

Recovery time after rhinoplasty new jersey may vary depending on the patient. Patients with healthy lifestyles who rarely drink or abstain from alcohol entirely can heal much more quickly. Although many physicians agree that two weeks off from responsibilities like work or school is ideal, patients may be able to return after just one. Some of this depends on the patient’s career. Working from home is usually seen as a much better option because the nose may still be swollen or bruised. It is common for patients to feel like they have a stuffy nose after the procedure. Any bruising or swelling that occurs will begin to dissipate after approximately 5 days. During this time, it is helpful to have somebody available to run errands.

man with a bandage on his nose after surgery giving a thumbs up

One Week Before Surgery

Preparing for the recovery period can be done weeks before surgery. By creating a relaxing environment in advance, the healing process will be less stressful. 

Stocking up on basic medical supplies is a good idea. Ointments, cotton balls, and tissues are a few staples that are needed directly after the procedure. In addition to prescription drugs, lots of water and nutritious meals will boost the immune system.

Adequate sleep is important long before the day of surgery. Setting a bedtime routine will help you fall asleep faster. With proper sleep hygiene, the immune system can function properly on the day of the procedure and during recovery. 

Avoiding alcohol is also recommended in the week before surgery. Because it decreases the immune system’s effectiveness, alcohol may cause the skin around the nose to flake off or create significant bruising. These effects can also last longer if the body is dehydrated. 

The Day Before Surgery

The day before surgery is a critical time for patients to take especially good care of their skin. Although face cream may seem like a healthy way to hydrate the skin, it is not recommended the night before surgery. Anti-aging serums, medicinal creams, foundation, and other liquid makeup can cause skin reactions. A light moisturizer is usually fine to use, however. 

Sun exposure should be minimized and sunscreen should be worn. UV rays can affect how well the skin heals once the surgery is completed. Staying indoors or wearing a hat is advised during the final days leading up to the operation. Sunscreen directly before surgery, however, is not recommended. 

Patients can eat the day before surgery but should stop before 10 PM. As a general rule, patients should not consume food or drink 8 hours before receiving anesthesia.

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Contact Us Today

Rhinoplasty is a popular procedure for both aesthetic and health reasons. For a shorter recovery time and an easier procedure, preparation is always advised. If you are interested in a rhinoplasty consultation with one of the board-certified facial plastic surgeons at the Glasgold Group in Princeton, NJ, please contact our group online today or call 732-838-6621. We are ready to answer any question such as rhinoplasty cost new jersey.

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