Plastic Surgery – How Smoking Can Affect You
If you are thinking about having any kind of plastic surgery done and you are a smoker, you should quit. If you don’t give up smoking two weeks before and after your surgery, your plastic surgeon may ask you to rethink your decision to have surgery. You should not put your life in jeopardy by failing to abstain from smoking for at least a few weeks. If you are a smoker, this may be a great opportunity for you to give up the habit for good. Don’t compromise your results and risk your life for an addiction that has probably cost you plenty already.
Nicotine can cause severe health complications after any type of surgery. Nicotine squeezes blood vessels in the body and it can cause heart problems. Smoking causes the skin to get dry and healing can be difficult after surgery. This can affect the cosmetic outcome of your operation. Smoking causes an increased risk of serious infections.
Smoking can lead to a longer bruising period. Smoking can lead to skin loss and tissue breakdown.
Smoking can cause pulmonary problems. It clogs the lungs and it can cause pulmonary infections like pneumonia. Smoking also ages the body and face. It decreases the skin’s elasticity, which leads to wrinkling and sagging of the skin. Nicotine closes blood vessels that bring oxygenated blood to the body’s tissues. Oxygen is needed in order for the body to heal, to fight infection, and keep the tissues alive. Oxygen is also needed to deliver important medications such as antibiotics.
Certain plastic surgery procedures present a greater risk for smokers, especially those that involve altering the blood supply and a lot of pulling. These procedures include tummy tucks, face-lifts, and some reconstructive surgery procedures. Ninety percent of cosmetic surgeons surveyed indicated that they perform cosmetic surgery on smokers, but half of them limit the type of plastic surgery procedure they perform on patients who smoke.
Some plastic surgeons indicated that they would perform plastic surgery procedures that didn’t involve skin separation or skin flaps, such as breast augmentation or nose reshaping. In addition, 60 percent of cosmetic surgeons said that they usually perform less invasive techniques on patients who smoke and a third of the respondents indicated that they sometimes change their technique. To help their patients kick their habit, some cosmetic surgeons offer them oral medication and/or smoking cessation patches. It is important to note that nicotine patches and nicotine gum can also affect your recovery, so don’t use them before and after your surgery.
Finding a trustworthy surgeon who specializes in the procedure you are considering is also a great move. A good surgeon will teach you about the risks that are associated with plastic surgery and the procedure you are considering.