cosmetic surgery blues featured

Dealing with the adjustment period after cosmetic surgery

A cosmetic surgery procedure can be a life-enhancing event that transforms a feature of the face or body that has long been a source of distress, embarrassment or even discomfort. The vast majority of patients are aware of what their results will be and are happy and satisfied with the operation’s outcome, but this doesn’t mean that there is not a significant adjustment period after the procedure and I always do my best to ensure my Warwickshire cosmetic surgery patients know what to expect.

Post-op blues

cosmetic surgery bluesThis is a very common stage after surgery and I always warn patients to expect it. The build-up to the day of surgery is characterised by extreme emotions of excitement and apprehension. Then the operation itself can be very physically challenging, particularly body rejuvenation surgery such as a tummy tuck or liposuction, and the patient will also be experiencing the effects of anaesthetic and taking pain-relieving medication.

‘Post-op blues’ tend to set in a few days after surgery, but for most people this is temporary and your mood should start to lift as you become more mobile and any discomfort starts to lessen. I liken it to the effect of lobbing a brick into a pond: the ripples take some time to settle and for calm to be restored.

Judging results

Another aspect of the adjustment period is seeing your new face or body for the first time in the mirror. It is essential not to judge your results too quickly as swelling and bruising will take some time to fully subside. In fact, I warn my Leamington rhinoplasty patients that the full and final result will not be evident until a year or more after their procedure, lower eyelid surgery (lower blepharoplasty) being another procedure that requires patience for things to settle and for the full result to emerge.

Adjusting to your new look

Even very minor changes, particularly those made during facial rejuvenation surgery such as an eyelid lift or brow lift, can have a dramatic effect and it can take some time to fully adjust to your new look. This can be very common following a rhinoplasty procedure, as the nose is the dominant feature of the face. Inwardly, these small changes can make a big difference too, boosting self-confidence and promoting a positive self-image.

Realistic expectations

This is key to a happy, satisfied patient as unrealistic expectations will always lead to disappointment, however ‘successful’ the procedure was in the eyes of the surgeon, friends and family. The importance of the consultation process cannot be underestimated as this is my opportunity to clearly understand the patient’s desires and expectations and whether cosmetic surgery can realistically fulfill them.

If you’re considering a cosmetic surgery procedure, be honest with yourself about why you want surgery and what you are expecting. Then arrange a consultation at my Leamington cosmetic surgery clinic and we can discuss what you are hoping to achieve.