3 Tips For Recovering From Breast Reconstruction
Going through treatment for breast cancer is an extremely difficult and scary time for many women. Once you have a mastectomy and radiation or chemotherapy, your health is protected but you may feel self-conscious or uncomfortable about your body. Breast reconstruction surgery is designed to restore a natural, full appearance to your breasts so that you can feel confident again. Here are a few things to keep in mind that will assist your recovery:
Get Your Medication Ahead of Time
Your doctor will prescribe you a few day's worth of pain meds, and possibly anti-nausea medication as well. The last thing you will feel like doing right after major surgery is standing in line at the pharmacy, so be sure to pick up your medication ahead of time.
Plan to Rest for Several Weeks
You will most likely no longer experience any serious pain after a few days, but this doesn't mean your body is done healing. Your surgeon will give you a list of activities that must be avoided for several weeks after your surgery, and it is so important to follow this religiously. You will need to avoid strenuous activity, working out, cleaning, lifting your kids, and other listed activities. Many women feel fine after a week or so and begin breaking the rules set by their surgeon. This is a mistake because it can cause problems with the healing tissue and delay your recovery.
Instead, plan to rest as much as possible. Try to limit your work hours if you can. Get help from loved ones and friends when it comes to household tasks and childcare. Your body needs as much rest as possible in order to heal fully, so give yourself permission to sleep in late and take naps.
Prep Light, Healthy Snacks Ahead of Time
In addition to rest, your body will need nutritious food to aid with healing. Unfortunately, you may experience nausea and loss of energy and appetite after your surgery, so it's a good idea to have a few healthy, simple, light snacks prepped and ready to go. Chopped up veggies with hummus or yogurt dip, sliced fruit, pre-made salads, and the ingredients for smoothies are all good ideas. Be sure to also have plenty of cold water on hand, as you will be dehydrated from the anesthesia.
You have been through a lot and deserve to feel like yourself again after your mastectomy. Following these tips for recovery from breast reconstruction surgery will ensure your recovery is a comfortable one. Talk to a breast reconstruction surgeon for more information.