Though getting a good night’s sleep is an essential part of overall health, it’s especially integral to the recovery process after a surgery such as buccal fat removal. When asking Dr. Schmidt questions about what to expect post-surgery, many people overlook the need to know about how they should sleep. However, quality sleep is a vital element of successful healing.
Sleep and Surgical Recovery
You already know, adults need between seven and nine hours of sleep each night for optimal well-being. You can think of sleep as taking your body and brain in for maintenance each night. While you are asleep, your brain and cells perform crucial tasks that keep you refreshed and make sure you are ready to meet the challenges of the day ahead.
The benefits of a restful night’s sleep take on an even more important role after surgery, when your body is working hard on healing itself. Quality rest can help shorten your overall recovery time by lessening inflammation and improving your circulation. Also, because a well-rested brain is more resistant to pain, sleep can help you rely less on pain medications.
How You Should Sleep After Surgery
After your buccal fat removal, you will need to sleep on your back with your head elevated. If you are a habitual stomach or side sleeper, it can be difficult to change your ways. However, sleeping with your head raised has benefits that aid significantly in your recovery process.
- Reduces swelling: Swelling is one of the most common side effects of buccal fat removal surgery. It is especially frustrating for many patients because it prolongs the time it takes before you see your eventual results. Sleeping with your head at an angle decreases the amount of fluid buildup around your incision sites, helping reduce swelling and encouraging faster healing.
- Protects incisions: Sleeping on your stomach or side can put undue pressure on the small incisions inside your mouth, possibly complicating your healing process.
- Maintains results: Finally, sleeping on your back is a good habit for anyone who is looking to preserve their improved appearance. Sleeping with your face pressed into a pillow can cause creases to develop in your face. Get the better of this sneaky aspect of aging by becoming a back sleeper.
Developing Smarter Sleeping Habits
If you think you might struggle to transition to sleeping on your back, it can work to your advantage to start adjusting your habits at least two weeks before the date of your scheduled surgery. Doing so will help you get used to the change while ensuring you get the restful sleep you need.
Since many sleep experts agree that a supine position is the healthiest way to rest at night, you will also realize the following benefits during the day:
- Better posture and spinal alignment
- Fewer tension headaches
- Relief from sinus pressure
If you’re still having trouble staying on your back all night, you can try sleeping with a pillow under your knees, lower back, or both. You can also surround yourself with pillows to help prevent you from rolling over in your sleep.
Great Sleep Is Part of the Recovery Process
Don’t overlook the role of quality rest in your health and happiness. By focusing on sleep as an integral part of recovering from buccal fat removal surgery, you can make your healing go more smoothly and begin to enjoy your results that much sooner.
If you have any questions about how to speed your recovery, you can always ask Dr. Schmidt for advice. As a board-certified cosmetic surgeon with more than 15 years of experience, Dr. Schmidt has devoted his career to facial plastic surgery, and will send you home with detailed instructions on how to take good care of yourself after your procedure. For outstanding buccal fat removal in the Denver area, schedule your consultation with Dr. Schmidt today.