If you are considering cosmetic surgery and great results are your goal, you won’t want to rush the process. It’s important to make sure you are patient, informed, and prepared.
To help you better understand how to best plan for your surgical procedure, you’ll want to consider the following steps in the process:
Do Your Research
Choosing your surgeon is the single most important decision you’ll make. Your safety and your results will be in that physician’s hands. You’ll likely want to dedicate a few weeks to researching, gathering referrals, and thoroughly vetting each of the surgeons you plan to consult with.
It goes without saying that all surgeons will vary in their expertise, skill set, and overall aesthetic preferences. With no laws in place to prevent any physician from performing cosmetic surgery (even with no training), you’ll definitely want to ensure that your surgeon is either board-eligible or board certified by the American Board Of Plastic Surgery.
In addition, you will also want to consider each surgeon’s areas of expertise, overall practice philosophy, education, and safety protocol. Make sure that you feel comfortable and understood by the surgeon you choose. Does he/she make you feel welcome and at ease? Does he/she understand your expectations? Does he/she help you thoroughly understand your options?
Prepare For Your Consultation
The best, most talented, and reputable surgeons are always busy so patience is key when it comes to scheduling your initial consultation. It will likely take a couple of weeks to secure an appointment. If you are planning to meet with several surgeons, of course, that time frame will increase.
To make the most of your consultation be sure to come prepared. Ask to view each surgeon’s before and after photos of patients who have had a similar procedure done.
Ask Good Questions
You’ll want to be an informed patient, knowledge is power! With that in mind, consider asking the following questions:
- Am I a good candidate for my procedure of interest? If not, what is keeping me from being a candidate.
- How many times have you performed this procedure?
- What are the benefits?
- What are the risks?
- What board certification(s) do you hold?
- Where will the surgery take place?
- Is the surgical facility accredited?
- Do you have hospital privileges? If so, where?
- What type of anesthesia will you use for this procedure?
- Have you helped patients with similar physical qualities and concerns? Can you show me before and after photos of their results?
Secure Your Surgery Date
The best plastic surgeons are booked out for weeks or even months so plan accordingly. Don’t let the wait deter you and resist the urge to just go with the first available surgeon for your procedure. A partnership with the surgeon you want, one who can deliver life-changing results while also ensuring your safety, is well worth any wait. The time frame between your initial consultation and surgery will also give you much-needed time to prepare for your procedure and your recovery. Take advantage of it!
Prioritize Your Health
You’ll want to make sure you are as healthy as possible before your surgery and during your recovery. Certain lifestyle choices can inhibit proper healing. Before your procedure, be sure to avoid:
- Drugs and alcohol: Recreational drugs and alcohol can interact with anesthesia and post-operative medication in a dangerous and unpredictable way.
- Cigarettes: Smoking decreases oxygen delivery to the skin and decreases circulation while having detrimental effects on the lungs and breathing after surgery. Avoid second-hand smoke as well.
- E-Cigarettes: Many E-cigs and Vapor cigarettes contain nicotine that constricts blood vessels and delays proper healing.
Arrange For Help From Family And Friends
After surgery, you’ll need plenty of time to heal. There are certain tasks that you won’t be able to do on your own. Be sure to:
- Arrange for a driver to take you to your surgical appointment and bring you back home.
- Gather together convenient items to be nearby while you will be recuperating. Move your books, tissues, and medications to places where they can be easily reached, and keep your cell phone charged should you need to reach someone right away.
- Plan meals ahead of time and put them in the freezer for easy and quick access.
- Arrange for childcare
Surgery And Recovery
Most procedures are done on an outpatient basis. Typically you will be able to leave the same day so long as everything checks out post-op. However, the recovery period will take some time. You may need to take one to two weeks off from your regular daily activities to ensure that you heal properly. The recovery period is crucial when it comes to the outcome of your surgery and rest will allow your body to heal properly. Be sure to ask your surgeon about how much time to expect to take off with your specific procedure.
We hope these tips have been helpful. If you are considering cosmetic surgery in Seattle, Washington we’d love to help. We invite you to give us a call today to schedule a consultation with one of our 7 highly-skilled, award-winning plastic surgeons. We’d love to meet you! 206.860.5582.