When it comes to your cosmetic procedure, pre and post-op care are just as important as the overall results. In fact, proper care, both pre and post-op, is instrumental for the best results. For your facial procedure, let’s go over what to expect, do’s and don’ts, and everything else vital to your pre and post-op care to maximize your results, minimize your recovery time and discomfort, and become your best self!
Early Pre-Op: First Steps
Once you’ve consulted with your surgeon, settled on your desired facial procedure, and booked the date, the next step is proper self-care and preparation.
Smokers: Smoking slows the body’s healing process by decreasing blood flow and inhibiting inflammation. Quitting 4-6 weeks before your procedure and staying smoke-free for at least 4 weeks post-op can decrease your risk of complications and help speed up the recovery process. It’s important to note that nicotine replacement, while safer than smoking, is still toxic. For best results, we recommend complete cessation and abstinence from nicotine for at least 4 weeks pre-op and 4 weeks post-op.
Roughly two weeks before surgery, patients should stop taking any blood-thinning medications, as well as any medications containing Vitamin E, diet pills and supplements, and aspirin or ibuprofen. You should discuss your medication list and physical history with your surgeon at your consultation.
Part of your preparation for a facial procedure also involves taking care of the skin on your face. For best results, we recommend a facial regimen with Vitamin C, Retinyl, and Moisturizing serums. This will help keep your face hydrated, moisturized, and ready for your procedure.
Pre-Op: Just Before Surgery
On the day just before your procedure, in addition to clearing out your schedule so you can rest and heal unimpeded, you should begin your antibiotics, as well as your Arnica (a holistic anti-inflammatory).
Antibacterial (or antimicrobial soap) is instrumental to your recovery. On both the night before surgery and the morning of, it’s important to wash your face thoroughly with this soap, as it will help minimize the risk of infection.
Continue your antibiotics and Arnica through the date of surgery, including the morning of your procedure. If you take an anxiolytic for your procedure, take that the morning of as well.
The Day of the Procedure
Don’t wait until the day of your surgery to ask your surgical team questions. If you have any questions or concerns in the days or weeks leading up to your procedure, be sure to contact your team without delay.
*Remember, communication and transparency are crucial to both a quick recovery and best results!*
As mentioned, your surgeon will tell you what medications you can and cannot take leading up to, directly before, and after your procedure, including the morning of. You should also arrange transportation to and from the facility. Depending on the procedure(s) performed, we also recommend having a loved one nearby for the first few days of healing. This can help the patient rest and focus on recovery.
Post-Op: Just After Surgery
Immediately after surgery, the most important things to remember are to keep the head elevated and to apply ice to help reduce swelling. As mentioned, we recommend having someone nearby for at least the first 24 hours post-op, to help the patient follow these two rules. Take any prescribed pain medications before you begin to feel discomfort–it’s easier to prevent pain than to try to control it.
Continue your antibiotics, Arnica, and any other medications as recommended by your surgeon immediately following your procedure. Try to restrict your activities for at least a few days post-procedure. It may take up to a week or longer to feel “back to normal”-at which point you can resume physical activity.
Post-Op: What to Expect After Your Procedure
Both bleeding and swelling are completely normal side effects of a facial procedure. Both should be easily controlled with rest, elevation, ice, and medication. If persistent bleeding or swelling occurs, contact your surgeon immediately.
As early as you can post-procedure, we recommend washing with antibacterial soap again. Continue your antibiotics, Arnica, and any other medications as directed by your surgeon. We also recommend the application of CBD restorative creams to help pain/numbness relief, moisturizing, and healing.
About one week to one-month post-op, you can discontinue your antibiotics. Remember to take the entire prescription, however, as avoiding even one dose can significantly reduce the efficacy. Continue your Arnica and CBD creams and consult with your surgical team about scar management.
Scar management: We begin scar management strategies about 10-14 days post-op. These include the use of sunscreen, gentle massages of the operative area, and the use of silicone-based gel to encourage optimal scar maturation. We continue these scar management strategies for up to a year post-op to ensure full scar maturation.
We also recommend patients start warm compresses around this time to reduce bruising. Your surgeon will tell you what compresses or apparel is best for your specific procedure. Continue use of these garments as recommended by your surgeon for as long as needed post-op.
Pre and Post-Op Recap
Quit smoking & nicotine use.
Stop taking blood-thinners, Vitamin E, ibuprofen/aspirin, and dietary supplements.
Begin facial regimen.
Ask any questions/clear any concerns.
Begin antibiotics, Arnica.
Clear out schedule to aid in rest and recovery.
Wash face with antibacterial/antimicrobial soap.
Day of procedure:
Continue taking antibiotics, Arnica.
For IN-OFFICE PROCEDURES, if you take an anxiolytic for your procedure, take that the morning of as well.
Keep head elevated, apply ice.
Continue to wash with antibacterial/antimicrobial soap.
Continue antibiotics, Arnica. Remember to take entire course of antibiotics.
Apply CBD restorative cream for pain/numbness, moisturizing, and healing.
Start scar management.
Start warm compresses to relieve bruising.
Ready For Your Procedure? Schedule Today!
From face and neck lifts to facial implants, rhinoplasty, eyelid lifts and so much more, DeLuca Plastic Surgery offers dazzling results customized to your needs. We also take great pride in walking our patients through all the aspects of pre and post-op care. From answering your questions to outlining a customized treatment plan to standing by your side through recovery, DeLuca Plastic Surgery is about more than just results. Our over 30 years of experience is a testament to the personalized, professional care we provide to each patient who walks through our doors.
Choose the right experience for you and start on the road to changing your life today!
Join our mailing list and get informative blog posts and helpful hints delivered to your inbox weekly.
Post-operative care after surgery helps patients achieve their optimal results. The mainstays of the first week of surgical recovery are skin care, rest, ice, elevation, preventing bruising, and controlling swelling. As patients enter the second week of recovery our efforts switch to focus on contour and scar management and massage. Specific recommendations are tailored to each surgery and patient needs.
Elevation and Icing
Surgical recovery usually begins with elevation and icing. To make icing the face easier, we recommend the TheraPearl Reusable Hot & Cold Therapy Face or Eye Mask. These masks utilize gel beads to better focus the cooling effect of the mask. Elevation of the head can be achieved by sleeping on a couple of pillows, however, the Brentwood Home Zuma Therapeutic Foam Bed Wedge Pillow makes it easier and more comfortable to maintain the elevation in any sleeping position.
To help with pain control and better skin hydration during the healing process we all recommend the Restore and Repair line from Ageless Millennial Aesthetics. The Restore and Repair line of skin care creams and serums includes the CBD and hyaluronic acid-infused CBD Restorative Cream and the Triple Peptide Repair Serum. This combination helps provide the hydration and essential building blocks the skin needs to recover after surgery.
Discover more skincare recommendations by checking out our blog post: Skin Care In The Age of COVID.
Bruising and Swelling
In addition to icing and elevation, for all surgeries we recommend, most patients take anti-bruising supplements, such as Boiron Arnica Montana and Bruizex (Bromelain), starting before surgery and continuing for about a month after surgery. These supplements help to prevent and resolve bruising after surgery.
At about 10 – 14 days after surgery, post-operative scar management strategies are begun. Sunscreens, such as Neutrogena Sheer Dry-Touch Sunscreen, help block the UV rays and prevent the scars from staying dark/too pink. Gentle massage of the incisions and operative area encourages blood flow, helps to breast down scar tissue, and keeps the scars from getting too raised.
Silicone-based scar tape is recommended to help encourage optimal scar maturation for breast and body surgery and scaring after minor procedures, Soothing Silicone Scar Tape from Estéticoceuticals is a waterproof, soft, silky tape that can easily be worn under clothes and only needs to be replaced every 3-7 days. For scar management after face surgery, Mederma Advanced Scar Gel is a clear gel that dries to a thin layer.
These scar management products are continued for the full scar maturation period of a year or more. Typically the darkness or redness of the scar is the last to disappear.
Breast support is critical after augmentation, reduction, and lifting procedures. Our patients recommend SheFit and Marina Bras for their unparalleled support and comfort.
- Post Op – SheFit Lounge Bra or Marena Recovery Bra
- Light Activity Bra – SheFit Low Impact Sports Bra or Marena Recovery Bra
Compression after body contouring help to control swelling and contour irregularities that can result after liposuction and skin removal surgeries. The day after body contouring surgery patients are placed into a binder or Stage One compression garment. This garment is made of a stiff material that provides a high amount of compression. Patients often purchase additional binders or Stage One garments for their convenience.
Deluca Plastic Surgery recommends Marena Recovery garments. These garments provide firm, form-fitting compression to help control the swelling that occurs in the weeks after surgery. These garments are tailored to your specific operation.
- Abdominal Binder
- Stage One Compression Garments of the Abdomen and Back
- Stage One Compression of the Abdomen, Back, and Thighs
- Chin and Neck Compression
- Arm Compression
After about 2-3 weeks of wearing this garment, patients are encouraged to purchase Stage Two garments to complete their healing process. These later stage garments provide more even compression and are less bulky than Stage One garments.
- Stage Two Compression Garments of the Abdomen and Back
- Stage Two Compression of the Abdomen, Back, and Thighs
For men, our patients recommend Underworks and Marena compression garments. These compression garments come in a range of styles and have several models tailored specifically to the post-operative management of gynecomastia and FTM patients.
There are multiple types of facelifts; determining which procedure is right for you can be difficult. We want to help our patients make the right choices concerning their personal appearance, so we’re going to help you select a procedure that will benefit you the most. Specifically, let’s examine the differences between a Mid Facelift and a Mini Lift. These two techniques are somewhat similar, so distinguishing which one is for you will be dependent on factors unique to each individual.(more…)
The facelift is experiencing a bit of a renaissance it would seem. I have patients of all ages ask about the surgery and whether or not they would be a “good” candidate for the procedure. It’s a good question.
Fifteen years ago, the average age of a patient was about 60 to 65 – today it’s closer to 45 to 50.
Why? Previously, patients were waiting until signs of aging had become extremely visible before opting to ‘turn back the clock’ 10 to 15 years (which is what a well done facelift can do). These days, patients are taking a more proactive approach in reducing the appearance of aging skin – and so are opting for less extensive lifts in their 40s and early 50s. That said, there’s absolutely no “right” or “best” time to undergo a facelift and if anything, having the procedure a little later on makes for an even more dramatic* result (because the face ages at a faster rate the older we get, so the difference between 30 years old and 40 is less than 40 and 50). (more…)
Question – Below my cheekbone a hollow channel is inching towards the center of my face. I had a facelift two years ago and cannot figure out what is causing this. What can be done to correct this?
The facelift was two years ago. On one cheek, just below my cheekbone and along the path of the lift, a hollow channel has been inching toward the center of my face. The doctor has assured me that this was not a thread lift. The hollow is about 1.25″ in width. The skin above it is taut and looks lifeless. The hollow keeps lengthening and it looks awful. What could be happening? And can anything be done to stop it and/or correct it? – via RealSelf