One of the keys to successful surgery is practical information, not just from the office but also from patients who’ve been there. Here are some tips from patients who have had facelifts.
Here are a few things I believe were significant in my recovery process:
- Get down pillows (I got two) with jersey knit pillow cases. You spend a lot of time lying down.
- Stock up on bottled water (cases of twenty-four), and don’t forget bendable drinking straws.
- Buy soft foods such as Jell-O and applesauce. Basically anything you can get through a quarter-inch opening between your lips is wonderful.
- The men’s button-front cotton shirt is the choice dress code after surgery. I picked up a half dozen at Goodwill for $2 each, washed them, wore them, and, when finished, washed them again and gave them back to Goodwill. Now that’s recycling.
- Baseball caps are a good thing for going outdoors during the first couple of weeks.
For anyone considering this course of action, here are a few pointers from my adventure:
- I found February or March was a very good time to drop out of sight for a couple of weeks.
- Be prepared. Have a good friend on standby at home.
- Stock up on straws, fluids, and totally soft foods. I lived on baby foods, yogurt, cream puddings, and, later, baked potato, well-mashed, with tinned salmon.
- Get your hair color done before, but don’t get an extreme haircut. For a while, you may want to hide in your hair.
- Don’t be dismayed if you upchuck the day after the anesthetic. Think of it as slimming.
- Be ready with button-up-the-front tops for a while.
- Look forward to enjoying the results, but don’t be impatient.
When I lost weight, I received a great suggestion to indulge myself with chocolate pudding. I did—usually at 10 o’clock in the morning. Decadent!
Five days before the surgery, I had my hair cut very short and lightened by a shade. After the surgery, when I met extended family, friends, or acquaintances, they all made similar comments: “You look so good! You’ve cut your hair.”
Change your hair; comb it over your ears to cover the surgery scars. Wear glasses to cover the puffiness around your eyes.
I had the vacation of my life! Not something you’d expect to hear post-surgery, is it? As it happens, stress management plays an important role in my professional practice, and to this end, I offer guided imagery, hypnotherapy, and various techniques to induce and facilitate deep states of relaxation.
Well, with post-surgery instructions to rest, keep ice water compresses on my eyes, and stay put for a few days, I decided to give myself a generous dose of my own medicine. For four days, I kept the phone ringer off; ate and drank my carefully planned, nutrition-dense cleansing and detoxifying concoctions; meditated; traveled through umpteen guided imageries; and went in and out of self-induced trance. In between “sessions,” I daydreamed to Beethoven and Kreisler while my eyes rested under those blessedly soothing ice water compresses.
What a marvelous few days; I just floated on a feeling of well-being, all the while following doctor’s orders.