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After your surgery, it’s time to celebrate. However, if you don’t follow the proper instructions, you can become very uncomfortable and prolong your recovery. Complications such as necrosis can also occur.

Poor diets and smoking are among the most common reasons why people fail to follow the recovery rules.


Why You Shouldn’t Smoke After Surgery

According to Adam Rubinstein, MD, a plastic surgeon based in Miami, the key to healing is having the proper amount of oxygen in the tissues. Smoking can affect the healing process by preventing the good passage of nutrients and oxygen into the body. The nicotine can decrease the blood flow to the tissues, leading to a lack of oxygen in the surgical area.

Another common reason people fail to follow the recovery rules is a lack of awareness about the harmful effects of smoking. The carbon monoxide in cigarettes can prevent the hemoglobin molecules from being able to carry oxygen to the tissues that need it.

Another common reason why people fail to follow recovery rules is that they are unaware of the harmful effects of marijuana. According to Dr. Rubinstein, marijuana can also have side effects when it’s mixed with other anesthetics, which can lead to arrhythmias. He advises against allowing patients to use marijuana or any other illicit substances for at least two weeks before their operation.


Why You Need to Eat Properly

According to Funderburk, a plastic surgeon in New York, there are anecdotal stories about patients who follow an anti-inflammatory diet. He suggests incorporating berries into their diet and avoiding fatty and heavy meat products. He said that these diets could help decrease inflammation and speed up the recovery process.

According to Dr. Rubinstein, high salt can increase swelling and can make the recovery process worse. He said that many of his patients tell him that they woke up the next morning with extra swelling after having a salty meal.

Ryan Neinstein, a plastic surgeon in New York, advises his patients to follow a strict no-salt diet for at least four to six weeks following their operation. He said that high salt can cause the body to retain water, which can lead to an accumulation of fluid.

For most people, bland food is the best way to avoid getting into a world of trouble. Some patients will be nauseated after being under anesthesia for a few days. In more serious cases, vomiting and stomach issues can lead to internal bleeding.


Why You Shouldn’t Drink Alcohol

Drinking alcohol can decrease the blood cascade’s ability to maintain a healthy blood flow, which can lead to additional internal bleeding and bruising. However, unbeknownst to most patients, other commonly used natural supplements such as coconut water, green tea, and spices can also thin the blood and put you at risk of bleeding.

After about two weeks, Dr. Rubeinstein can reassure his patients that they can still eat and drink supplements as long as their clots are healing. He also said that patients should continue to follow a healthy diet.


Ask your surgeon about your recovery plan and follow these recovery guidelines to ensure that you have an easy post-operation recovery.