Fall and winter are both great times to have liposuction: It’s usually easier to find time to recover during these seasons, and postoperative swelling can be disguised with thick sweaters and coats. However, like all forms of invasive surgery, liposuction needs to be planned carefully so it doesn’t interfere with your holiday plans. It’s therefore important to know what to expect during liposuction recovery: Knowing when you’ll feel better and experience optimum results can help you make the most of this winter’s festivities.
Liposuction Recovery: What to Expect, and When
Liposuction remains such a popular body contouring procedure because it produces results relatively quickly, with little downtime. Most people who have liposuction performed on a small area, e.g., under their chin or their inner thighs, can return to work after just one week of rest. Still, if you’re planning to have liposuction on a larger area, like your stomach or back, you may need two weeks of rest. Not everyone who has liposuction on a large area needs to rest this long, but older patients and patients with a strong inflammatory response usually do. Because it’s difficult to anticipate exactly how you’ll respond to surgery, it’s better to err on the side of caution and plan for at least two weeks of recovery time. In other words, if you want to feel better in time for December 24th, you should have surgery during the first week of December.
Another important factor to consider is residual swelling. Though symptoms of physical discomfort generally wane within just three to five days after having liposuction, deeper inflammation can take a while to fully resolve. In rare cases, patients have reported noticing swelling for up to four weeks after having liposuction. (Note that this is also more likely when the patient is having a large area treated.) Though this swelling isn’t dangerous and probably won’t cause you any pain, it can obscure your results. Swelling can cause treated areas to look “puffier” than they actually are, making you look a bit heavier than you will after you’re completely done healing.
How much this residual swelling will matter depends largely on what you plan to wear during the holidays. If you live in a cold climate and love to show off your favorite kitschy Christmas sweaters, most people probably won’t even notice that you’re still a bit swollen. If you have your heart set on slipping into a slinky dress, on the other hand, it could end up sabotaging your style. We, therefore, recommend having liposuction during the last week of November.
Though time is fast running out, if you contact us promptly, you’ll still have a chance to arrange a liposuction consultation in 2018. When you visit Dr. Florence Mussat, she’ll help you weigh your options and determine whether or not this procedure can fit into your busy holiday plans. Don’t let the opportunity to give yourself the gift of a better body pass you by—make this the year that you finally achieve your cosmetic goals.