Taking Time Off/Recovery Time

Taking Time Off/Recovery Time

If you are employed outside the home, be prepared to take at least 2 to 3 weeks off of work after your abdominoplasty. Your plastic surgeon may even suggest taking more time off. BreastHealthOnline recommends that even if your plastic surgeon asks you to take less than 2 weeks off from work, you request to be out a minimum of 2 weeks anyway. If you are having your abdominoplasty in conjunction with a breast reduction, you should ask to have at least 3 weeks off. If you have a job that requires heavy lifting or physical labor, you should be off work for at least 4 weeks.

Plan on having help around the house for the first week of recovery. You'll want to move around during your first week home as it helps fight the formation of blood clots.  Keep in mind though, your physical activity should be kept to a minimum. Your body needs this time to heal and recover from the trauma of surgery. Have someone who can prepare and serve meals and clean up afterward, do laundry, and help with children if you have them. There are some excellent tips on how to manage small children after surgery here.

You won't be able to stand straight for the first week or so. Your skin and muscles have been pulled tight and are not yet ready to stretch that far. Just listen to your body and you will slowly be able to ease into a full upright position. While you will see immediate results, keep in mind that over the coming weeks swelling will come and go - many times in direct relation to your level of physical activity. You should still see positive changes on a daily basis. The very best way to keep the swelling down is to wear your compression garment 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Once you do return to work, take a few half days that first week back if you are able. Your body is not going to be happy with the return to everyday life, and you will most likely find yourself with additional swelling. Treat your body with some care and respect your current limitations. Your recovery will end, and then you won't have to stop and think before you do. Until then, please be wise and don't put your healing at risk.

While your outside incisions will heal and close within several weeks, the internal work that your plastic surgeon did could take up to a year to achieve full healing. Be patient with your body and you'll have even better long-term results.

Please feel free to join us and ask any questions you may have at our Tummy Tuck Support Board.

  • Sunday, 20 May 2012