Many men and women start researching lower body lift surgery after they’ve experienced a massive weight loss — usually losing around 100 pounds or more. During this time of research and attending consultation and pre-op appointments, patients are very positive. They’re looking toward the future, they’re anticipating amazing results, and they’re excited not to be weighed down any longer by loose skin and stubborn fat.
These positive feelings typically accompany a patient right up until the day of their surgery. However, it’s not uncommon for patients to begin to experience feelings of regret directly following their procedure — or after a few days or weeks.
In fact, this is quite a common phenomenon, not just for lower body lifts, but for all types of major plastic surgery. In the weeks prior, patients are super excited about their procedure — despite understanding there may be potential complications in the operating room and recovery may be difficult. Then, after surgery, they start to experience all sorts of conflicting emotions such as regret, guilt, and depression.
If you have recently undergone lower body lift surgery and are experiencing feelings of regret or depression, this article is for you. Below, we will outline some of the main reasons why patients may experience these feelings. We’ll also talk about some of the things you can do to manage these difficult emotions and ideally, come out on the other side with an optimal outcome, both mentally and physically.
Sometimes called “post-plastic surgery depression”, it’s not uncommon to get the blues after plastic surgery. After any surgery, in fact, people tend to feel physically unwell as they are healing. And this in itself can sometimes lead to a downward spiral of mental and emotional feelings.
But there are other reasons for post-surgery blues as well — those more specifically related to cosmetic surgery.
Namely, patients often start off on their lower body lift surgery path with their eye on the prize, but once they’re in recovery, they forget their final destination.
In other words, before their body contouring surgery, patients will readily recognize that it’s going to take a long time before they see their final results. But once they’re had the surgery, they lose their patience and get distracted by the challenges of recovery.
They feel physically poorly and are tired and swollen beneath their compression garment. When they look in the mirror, they don’t see the results they expected. They see someone who appears to have even bigger hips, perhaps (swelling) or bright red scars (which will fade).
They wonder: “What did I do to myself?” And with the cost of lower body lift surgery what it is, this can lead to even more distress.
Again, these are very common feelings after plastic surgery. Now, let’s explore what you can do to generate calmness and set your intentions as you heal.
As you recover from lower body lift surgery, use the following tips to give yourself a boost of calm and alleviate troubling and challenging emotions:
Many patients simply forget altogether why they decided to have surgery in the first place. It’s important to remind yourself of this during recovery!
Don’t forget about all of the trials and tribulations that you were experiencing before your surgery that led you to do this. You might even look back at some pre-surgery photos or peruse the before and after pictures that you looked at prior to your surgery.
You didn’t get the surgery because you wanted to have a terrible experience during your recovery. There were specific issues that you were very passionate about correcting.
You even paid the not inexpensive cost of a lower body lift. Furthermore, you decided to get a lower body lift vs tummy tuck surgery because you were so passionate about giving yourself a completely new look on your lower half — not just on your abdomen.
Now, give your body some time to heal.
Another good tip for your recovery time after lower body lift surgery is to keep yourself busy. You won’t be back at work yet. You probably won’t be seeing as many friends and family. You may not be participating in your normal activities, whether that’s exercise, going out with friends, gardening, etc.
Therefore, you’ve got to come up with some other activities that will keep your mind busy. You can try a craft that you can do with just your hands or get into a show or movie series. You might try a new book or podcast. Find something that you like to keep your mind off your recovery.
Lastly, keep your eyes off the mirror. Some patients have a tendency to constantly look in the mirror and assess their results for possible imperfections. Patients will call in and say they’re seeing lumps or bumps or more swelling on one side than the other.
Most of these changes are just a part of the recovery process, and we will walk you through that so that you know what to expect. But if you spend all of your time staring in the mirror, carefully obsessing over every square inch of your body, this is only going to complicate your emotions and make your recovery experience more difficult.
You must give your body time. Some lower body lift patients don’t see their full results for up to a year.
So, what if you still have lower body lift regrets even after you’ve completely healed from body contouring surgery? Perhaps you’ve healed your lower body lift scars after a year, yet something still doesn’t feel right.
At this point, it might be time to undergo a physical exam with another plastic surgeon. In some cases, skin irregularities, excess tissue, hanging skin, poor wound healing or wound dehiscence, or other complications may have caused your surgical outcome to be less-than-excellent. And while a patient’s own body image and having realistic expectations do play roles, it’s also important to remember that some lower body lift results are truly not optimal.
If this has happened to you, it’s important to seek a board certified plastic surgeon with special experience performing surgery on patients after significant weight loss (especially lower body lift procedures).
Lower body lift procedures are major surgery. That’s why the lower body lift cost is so significant. After a patient has experienced significant weight loss, they often have a lot of excess skin and tissue to remove. Doing so in a way that reduces the appearance of scarring, ensures maintained mobility, and accentuates a patient’s curves and natural contours in a pleasing way is very difficult.
Find a surgeon you can trust with proven results in this area. Revision surgery may be your next step, but always remember to maintain realistic expectations, and have patience during your recovery.
Want to learn more about lower body lift surgery or revision surgery after a previous body lift? Contact our office today to book your private appointment with board certified plastic surgeon Dr. Aric Aghayan.
Enjoy the pinnacle of cosmetic surgery expertise with board-certified Plastic Surgeon Dr. Aric Aghayan at Après Plastic Surgery. With a legacy of over 1600 successful body contouring procedures, Dr. Aghayan stands as the foremost specialist in advanced body contouring technology and treatment options. Take the next big step on your beauty journey by scheduling a comprehensive plastic surgery consultation with Dr. Aghayan today.