Preparing for Tummy Tuck Surgery
6 months before:
- Start researching your surgeons- make sure to consult with at least 3 before choosing your final surgeon. This is a huge procedure, so put yourself in the best hands possible.
- Work out and eat healthy! This seems so general, but it truly does help your healing process. Your body needs to be in the best shape possible to endure this procedure. Work on your back and legs the most as these will be strained more after surgery to compensate for lack of use of abs and upper body. If you can get your abs in shape also, it’s less that the doctor has to tighten and less pain for you in the long run…
- Save up moola! This procedure is not only costly in itself, but you will need several other supplies and medicines that add up quickly.
3 months before:
- Schedule your time off from work. Take at LEAST 2 weeks off from work- 4 is ideal, but 2 weeks is mandatory. You won’t be able to do basic tasks during this time without at least some help, so plan on it ahead of time
- Find someone to care for you. This is HUGE! No matter how strong you are or how capable you are, you will need help for 2 weeks after surgery. No way around this- sorry…
1 month before:
- Purchase your supplies (list is here).
- Get your bloodwork done. Your surgeon should have given you the form for this.
- Get a physical checkup just to make sure there are no concerns with your body before going into surgery.
- Set up rental for a hospital bed or remote recliner chair- trust me, this will be a huge help in your recovery! It’s a pain in the butt getting in and out of bed when you can’t use your stomach muscles at all.
2 weeks before:
- Go to your pre-op appointment. This is the final appointment you will have before seeing your surgeon the day of surgery. Bring your written list of questions to ask just so your mind is at ease.
- Prepare and freeze any meals ahead of time that you may want.
- Quit taking Vitamin E and Salmon Oil supplements. Also, quit eating the foods on your surgeon’s “don’t eat” list- this is super important as some foods can thin blood or slow down healing time. Ask your surgeon what these foods are if he/she hasn’t told you.
- Type up your list of important info, contacts, 24 hour pharmacies, etc… for whoever is caring for you. The last thing you want is your caregiver hunting around for who to contact if something happens.
1 week before:
- Get plenty of rest and do something for yourself. The week before is so nerve racking- it will be hard to get good sleep and get rid of the butterflies in your stomach. So… get a massage or a pedicure- do whatever you can to put your mind and body at ease.
- Call your surgeon’s office to make sure all payments are taken care of and see if there’s anything else they need you to do.
3 days before:
- Get your major grocery shopping done- you will want to stock up on fresh fruits and veggies, lemons (put in your drinking water as they promote healing). Also having fiber bars and fiber cereal on hand helps with the um… “tummy plugging” you’ll have from the pain meds- oye..
- I ate a ton of oranges during my recovery as the vitamin C is good for you :)
- Purchase any last minute supplies you may need- gauze pads, surgical tape, tissues, extra pillows, etc…
1 day before:
- Don’t go to work. Trust me on this one- you won’t be able to concentrate anyways as you’ll be too nervous. Take the day to get last minute things lined up, spend time with family or friends, get a nap in, etc… This is your last day as a “normal” person for a little while, so relax and enjoy it!
- Go to bed early. You’ll want as much sleep as you can get- your body will need it.
- Eat light meals- you don’t want anything heavy on your stomach the day before surgery.
The day of surgery:
- Get up 2 hours before your surgery time- you will need to be there at least 1 hour ahead of time to be prepped for surgery. You don’t want to feel rushed this morning as you want to be as calm as possible.
- Wear clothes that are very loose fitting as you’ll need those clothes to make their way over all your drain tubes and padding you’ll acquire after surgery. Also, wear a top that buttons down the front as it hurts to lift your arms afterwards
- Take a deep breath- it’ll be ok! You have done so much until now to prepare for this day- it will go well! Yes, there will be some pain and discomfort afterwards, but nothing that you can’t handle. The worst part is over- the anxiety and waiting for this day ;)