At Nuance Cosmetic Surgery in Folsom, CA, we are passionate about helping people in the Sacramento County area feel like the best, most confident version of themselves possible. To achieve this, many women seek breast augmentation. Today, we reveal everything you need to know about recovery from this procedure, including how to sleep.
Post-Op Tips and Tricks Following Breast Augmentation
Sleep on Your Back
Following breast augmentation, it is extremely important that you sleep on your back. If you sleep on your stomach, you will most likely disturb the incisions made to place the implants. If you sleep on one of your sides, you may place excessive pressure on the implants and disturb your skin.
If you toss and turn at night, we strongly encourage you to sleep in a recliner after your breast enhancement if you have one. If you don’t, build a fort of rolled towels on both sides of your torso to prevent you from rolling over in your sleep accidentally.
Sleep With Your Upper Body Elevated Slightly
Again, sleeping in a recliner after your breast enhancement procedure is ideal. However, even if you don’t have a recliner, you should sleep with your upper body elevated slightly. This can be achieved without a recliner by stacking a couple of pillows beneath your upper back with the bottom of the pillows at your bra line.
Sleep on Your Side With Your Upper Body Elevated Slightly
If you don’t have a recliner at home, we strongly encourage you to devote a few nights before your procedure to sleeping on your back with your upper body elevated. If you can’t find a comfortable position, you may sleep on your side because it is of the utmost importance to sleep comfortably.
However, it is even more important to elevate your upper body if you find that you must sleep on your side. You should also be sure to sleep in an approved soft bra with no underwires and place a pillow beneath your breasts.
Sleep Nine Hours a Night
During the first two weeks post-op, it is very important that you commit at least nine hours per night to sleep. If you have trouble falling asleep, this may mean committing between 9.5 and 10 hours per night to be in bed trying to sleep. Your mind and body heal better when you are sleeping than when you are resting with your eyes closed.
Most of this healing occurs when you are in the REM (rapid eye movement) cycle of sleep. You also need plenty of sleep because it takes your brain 90 minutes to cycle through all phases of sleep. If you wake up after seven hours of sleep, you only get four full cycles of sleep including REM sleep. If you sleep for nine hours, you get six full cycles of sleep, including REM sleep.
Many women find it difficult to sleep for 7.5 hours a night, let alone nine hours a night. If you find yourself struggling to sleep, meditate 30 to 60 minutes before bed to help you wind down. Spend a month or so before your procedure to figure out what kind of meditation is most effective for helping you sleep.
Some women find the most success using guided meditation to help them sleep soundly throughout the night. Other women find that they meditate, relax, and fall asleep best while they listen to classical music. No technique is better than any other.
Don’t Set an Alarm
Even with a smartwatch or app that claims to track your sleep, it is impossible to know for certain when you fall asleep. Even if you think you will fall asleep at nine o’clock, if you fall asleep later and set your alarm for six o’clock, you may rob yourself of a full sleep cycle.
By turning off your alarms for the next two weeks, you will naturally wake up at the end of a full sleep cycle after your body has gotten enough rest. You may find that you are in such high spirits after waking up without alarm that you don’t go back to one once your recovery period is over.
Use Blackout Curtains or Drapes
Depending on when you go to bed and the time of year you undergo your procedure, you may find that the sun is up well before you are ready to be. To ensure that the sun doesn’t wake you up before you are done sleeping, use blackout curtains or drapes to keep your room dark until you are ready to rise, shine, and greet the day.
Some women have no trouble sleeping through the sun peeking through the curtains. But the sound of birds tweeting in the morning is irreconcilable. No matter how late they went to bed the night before, they wake up irritated by the cardinals perched on the branches outside their bedroom window.
If noise from outside your bedroom window wakes you up before your alarms, wear earplugs to bed. This is another post-op trick for sleeping soundly that you can carry on after your recovery period. It also helps when you have a partner or roommate working a different shift than you and making lots of noise in the house in the middle of the night.
Walk As Much As Possible
Another tip to help you sleep deeply every night is to walk as much as possible. During the first 24 hours post-op, you should focus on resting with your upper body elevated slightly. However, once those first 24 hours are up, you are free to walk as much as you want. Keep in mind, it’s important to listen to your body during your recovery period.
It’s okay to not walk as far as you usually do. If you feel like you need to stop and rest, do so. Besides making an effort to walk as much as possible every day, try to walk farther every day than you did the day before. The speed at which you walk doesn’t matter while you’re recovering. Walking will strengthen your circulatory system, speed your recovery, and help you catch z’s.
Incorporate Fruit Into Every Meal
Incorporating fruit into every meal is a lot easier than you may think. For breakfast, whip up a refreshing smoothie with fresh, local seasonal fruits. To make it healthier, use full-fat yogurt instead of ice cream as the base of your smoothie. If your favorite fruit isn’t in season, you can use frozen fruit and skip the ice.
For lunch, go for a wrap or salad with tomatoes and cucumbers. Because the seeds of cucumbers and tomatoes are inside the produce, botanically, they are considered fruits. For dinner, you can eat green, yellow, orange, or red bell peppers stuffed with quinoa, mozzarella cheese, crushed red pepper flakes, spinach, and tomatoes.
Incorporate Vegetables Into Every Meal
Incorporating vegetables into every meal is also easier than it may sound at first glance. Try freezing a week’s worth of breakfast quiches with spinach, sausage, and eggs before your scheduled procedure. Alternatively, you can add fresh kale and frozen spinach to your smoothies.
For lunches, shred lean cuts of poultry and dice tomatoes before your procedure. Then you can easily wrap these ingredients in a heart of romaine lettuce. For dinner, you can make stuffed bell peppers with spinach, eat a burger with tomato slices and substitute the bun for romaine lettuce hearts or make homemade spaghetti with tomato sauce and a side salad.
Drink Plenty of Fluids
Another crucial part of your recovery process is to drink enough fluids. We recommend our clients try to drink at least a gallon of water, tea, and coffee daily. Unfortunately, soda doesn’t count towards your daily hydration requirements. However, water-dense foods, like cucumbers, carrots, celery, and tomatoes, will help you achieve your hydration goal.
Watch Your Sodium Intake
While sodium helps your body and skin retain water, too much sodium elevates your blood pressure, which will slow your recovery process more than adequate hydration will speed it up. Women with naturally high blood pressure should consume no more than a gram of sodium daily.
Women who naturally have blood pressure within a “normal” range may consume up to two grams of sodium daily. Finally, women with naturally low blood pressure may consume up to three grams of sodium per day. During your initial consultation, we will take your blood pressure and advise you regarding how much sodium you should consume.
Don’t Drink Alcohol
While it may be tempting to relax with a mimosa, you should abstain from alcohol consumption during the first week or two post-op. If you’re feeling like your old self after just a week post-op, give us a call at Nuance Cosmetic Surgery to see if it is right for you to start consuming alcohol again.
Alcohol is a diuretic, which means it will elevate your blood pressure while dehydrating you significantly and flushing out vital nutrients. To make your recovery as smooth as possible, make a concerted effort to keep yourself adequately hydrated and well-nourished while keeping your blood pressure within a normal range.
Watch Your Caffeine Intake
Caffeine, like sodium, elevates your blood pressure. If you consume too much caffeine too quickly, your blood pressure may elevate so much that it becomes unhealthy. To determine how much caffeine you can safely consume during your recovery period, purchase a blood pressure monitor and measure your blood pressure after drinking caffeine.
If you can’t find a blood pressure monitor at your local pharmacy, use your best judgment. You may still drink a cup of caffeinated coffee or tea when you wake up in the morning. However, you should not take caffeine supplements, energy drinks, or energy shots. If you feel symptoms of caffeine overdose, drink eight ounces of water and go for a walk.
Carefully Assess Your Seasonings
If you’re the kind of person who adds habanero sauce and crushed red pepper flakes to everything, take a step back. Spicy foods boost your serotonin levels, making you feel happier and easing pain. However, don’t make your meals too hot. Unfortunately, spicy foods can elevate your blood pressure.
If you are planning to incorporate spicy foods into your meal plan after your breast augmentation, take your blood pressure after eating a spicy meal to ensure your desired meal does not elevate your blood pressure to within an unhealthy range.
Learn More Post-Op Tips and Tricks Today
Would you like to learn more about how to care for your new body after breast augmentation? If so, please contact us today at Nuance Cosmetic Surgery in Folsom, CA to schedule your initial consultation. Conveniently located just 23 miles from Sacramento, CA, we are proud to serve every community in Sacramento County.