One of the major concerns both men and women alike face about elective surgery is the potential for very large and noticeable scars resulting from some of the more major procedures. This can often be the deciding factor for those who are not sure whether the resulting scars are going to be worth the potentially positive aspects of the plastic surgery.
While it’s not truly possible to undergo any surgical procedure without the potential for some type of scarring, there are a number of surgical techniques and postoperative steps that can help to minimise the visibility of the scars. Remember that the dark scarring you see right after surgery is not at all the scarring that you’ll see after a year of healing.
In the hands of the right surgeon, you’ll find that you are much more enamoured with your results than you are unsettled with any scarring that may result. You can also take some steps to minimise the appearance of your scars as your incisions heal.
Avoid sun exposure, protect your skin
Scars that are exposed to the sun while they are still in the healing stage can thicken and darken. It is for this reason that postoperative patients are advised to avoid spending too much time outdoors until their incisions have had more time to heal. It is also important that you protect your scars and skin with a good sunscreen each time that you go outdoors.
Easing back into an active lifestyle
During the first few postoperative weeks, you will be advised to avoid strenuous activities, which will include working out. However, this is not to say that you should stay completely immobile during those first recovery weeks. Movement, slow and steady, will promote good circulation, which is very important for the regeneration of tissue.
Even a short walk to the kitchen to refill your water will help to keep your blood moving. According to Sydney arm lift specialist, Dr. Chaithan Reddy, once you are given the green light to increase your physical activity, it’s important to focus on movement that takes your surgery and discomfort levels into consideration. If you are recovering from a tummy tuck, you don’t want to start a routine that includes sit ups that’ll leave you feeling more than a bit of discomfort. The same holds true if you are recovering from an arm lift, you will want to take it easy on exercises that involve lifting your arms until you are completely healed.
Avoid smoking, and avoid smokers
Outside of the effects that smoking can have on the rest of your body, smoking can actually exacerbate scarring. This is because smoking, and all of the chemicals that are present in these products, can adversely impact the body’s ability to transport oxygen to the tissues that are healing. Your incisions may take longer to heal, and the resulting scars may not fade well for a very long time.
Practice good wound care
Your surgeon may prescribe some topical ointments that should be applied to your incisions after a few days of recovery. These prescription products can help to keep your incisions clean, and help to stave off infection. This, in turn, will help your body to better focus on healing the incisions.
If you do see any signs of excessive redness or you become feverish, it’s important to reach out to your surgeon for follow-up care as soon as possible.
Considering your nutrition and hydration
The idea of sitting in front of the television indulging in junk food favourites can sound like an appealing way to spend your postoperative time. However, a balanced diet with a strong emphasis on lean protein will help your body to better heal itself. Protein is one of the components needed to heal and recover from any sort of injury or surgery. Plant-based sources of lean protein can also promote healing.
It’s important to stay hydrated, particularly after a surgical procedure. A body that is well-hydrated is a body that is healthy.
If you are concerned about scarring, or about how your incisions appear to be healing, be sure to discuss scar minimisation techniques and prevention with your surgeon prior to your procedure. Your surgeon may have some additional treatment options that can reduce your chances of highly visible scarring.