I’m looking to get a cheek lift but want to avoid taking an excessive amount of pain medication. Are there any alternatives?

First of all, undergoing any type of surgical procedure is nerve-wracking. While most people manage their own anxiety symptoms over time, it’s extremely useful to implement techniques and strategies to help manage it and mitigate the effects. There are those who listen to music and relax. Speaking to people who have had the procedure so that you know what to expect can help avoid anxiety and resulting stress.  Having a supportive person be with you to help take care of you can also alleviate discomfort and unnecessary exertion.  It’s important to understand that a cheek lift will involve some degree of discomfort but the pain can be controlled with oral medication.  The surgery process itself, done under sedation, should not involve pain.  The discomfort felt during the recovery process should decrease over the first week and be controlled with medication prescribed by you surgeon.  Not engaging in vigorous activity will decrease stress on the incisions and speed recovery.  Use narcotic medication judiciously and there should not be concern of excessive medication. However, don’t discount the power of natural remedies such as music and relaxation, as mentioned before. There have been studies that showcased that certain individuals who listened to music prior to the procedure had a lesser need for narcotic medication.

If I pick my nose frequently, will it widen out my nostrils? I was wondering if chronic nose picking has any effect on the odd shape and size of my nostrils.

It’s extremely difficult to force your nostrils to widen by simply picking them. The change in shape and size is due to other factors. The human body is often modified due by trauma. Picking your nose on a continuous basis may cause the scar tissue to form, essentially causing asymmetry of the nostrils. But asymmetric nostril sizes are typically caused by deviation of the caudal septum or asymmetric position of the medial crura.  If you’re concerned about the shape of your nostrils, you can speak with an experienced surgeon so you can achieve the size and shape you’re looking for.

I will be having a lateral brow lift in a week’s time and will need to move house 2 weeks after that procedure. Is this ok? How long should one rest after such a procedure? Hercules

Hi Hercules,

It is best to avoid lifting heavy things after any surgery for at least a week. Since you plan to have your surgery in a week’s time and the move will happen 2 weeks later, there should not be much in terms of complications for you, but be sure to consult with your surgeon to assess your degree of healing and the effect of lifting objects. Some patients who undergo a brow lift can get elevated blood pressure and bleeding, which is not desirable after surgery. Key to avoiding these complications, is following post-op care guidelines: avoid hitting/bumping your face and brow; avoid picking up heavy objects; sleep with the head elevated with a couple of pillows for 1-2 weeks after surgery; avoid straining during bowel elimination (a laxative will be helpful + proper diet, plenty of water and walking); no smoking during recovery; no sun exposure for 3 months.

Read Bel Red Center for Aesthetic Surgery reviews to see how patients recover from brow lifts, and what you can expect during your procedure.

What are the different kinds of liposuction that can help with chins with fatty deposits?

Chins with fatty deposits can be addressed with tumescent liposuction.  The treatment area is numbed with lidocaine, tiny incisions are made under the chin and each ear. A micro cannula is inserted and a dilute solution of local anesthetic is pumped in to numb the area.  The fatty tissue then plumps up and a micro cannula is used to manipulate and break up the fat, and a vacuum pump sucks out the fat cells. This is generally done to shape the lower facial structure to balance the face or redefine the chin contour.  Depending on how much fat needs to be removed, the surgeon may decide that a neck lift or facelift are also necessary to tighten the facial and neck skin since the skin may become increasingly saggy when the underlying fat is removed.  Older patients with less elastic skin may need the additional procedure of face or neck lift to tighten the facial and neck areas.

Read Dr. Jan Zemplenyi reviews to see how patients felt about their procedures.

I plan to have smart liposuction to remove 1000 cc’s of fat from each of my thighs? Is this too much fat to remove? How can I speed up recovery? Chicha

Hi Chicha, The maximum amount of fat that can be safely be removed is about 5 litres or 5000 cc – so the amount that you’re contemplating having removed isn’t excessive. As with all surgery, the success of the procedure will depend a great deal on the post-op care given and/or observed by the patient.  By the way, you didn’t say how old you are or the state of your health.  It is worth mentioning that the best liposuction results are expected for patients over the age of 18 years, who have good skin tone and elasticity.  Good candidates for this procedure have good health and are without blood circulation problems.  It is important to consult a board certified plastic surgeon to help you decide on the specific procedure you need to achieve your fat removal goals.

Why do I need a breast lift along with implants if I have saggy skin?

To achieve a desired shape and surface quality for the breast, it may be recommended to have a breast lift together with breast implants.  The breast lift will add volume to the breasts, reshaping it and adding volume.  Often, the nipple and areola are shifted to a higher, more youthful position.  The two surgeries can be combined in a procedure known as a breast lift with implants or an augmentation mastopexy.  Having both procedures is recommended when you have excess skin, and just have a breast augmentation without the breast lift.  The implant will end up at the bottom of the breast a short time after surgery and will make the skin sag even worse.  It is best to have both procedures together otherwise the augmentation will be a disappointment.  If you have excess skin and go to a surgeon who tells you that you can get away with just an augmentation, seek a second opinion from a board-certified plastic surgeon or you most likely end up unhappy with your result.

How is a breast lift performed? Sabrina

Hi Sabrina, the only difference between Breast Lifting and Breast Reduction is the removal of breast tissue. Because two circles of tissue of unequal circumference need to be sewn together, a tailor would know that the result will be bunching of the tissue. Fortunately, this bunching usually settles in a few months. As the breast matures, there will be more extensive drooping, making the next level of lifting requires a vertical incision between the areola and the crease below the breast. Many plastic surgeons believe that most patients require a full lift. An incision is made along the length of the crease, together with vertical incisions and incisions around the areola. It is critical to choose a board certified cosmetic surgeon to help you decide on the matter of scarring.

How long is recovery after a tummy tuck? Sawyer

Hi Sawyer,  A tummy tuck procedure involves making an incision just above the pubic hair line, removing the excess skin and fat, and tightening the abdominal muscle. The recovery time for a tummy tuck varies for each individual, but generally takes at least 6-8 weeks. Patients who’ve undergone this procedure have drainage tubes in for seven days at which time they are told not to go back to work. Once the tubes are removed, they can go back to work as long as there is no heavy lifting. Sutures remain in for up to 17 days. Subsequently, patients can resume light walking.  However, exercising with normal routine should usually commence at about six to eight weeks. It takes at least six weeks for the sutures on the muscles to scar back down and, therefore, we have the patients wait. Patients are also put in abdominal binders and girdles for six to eight weeks in order to reduce swelling, edema, and allow the tissue to scar back down

What happens during a tummy tuck? Alvin

Hi Alvin, thanks for your question.  An incision is made in the lower abdomen and a W-shaped scar is made. To deal with the large amount of extra skin, after massive weight loss, vertical incisions are added to the belly. The skin of the belly is then lifted, exposing the muscles. The belly button (umbilicus) is protected, and the skin is lifted all the way to the ribs and to the bottom of the breastbone, with most if not all of the skin between the belly button and the pubis – removed.  The rectus muscles are sewn together, a cut is made in the skin and the belly button is popped through. Two drains are placed. The wound is closed, usually in two layers, with a deep layer of dissolving stitches and a superficial layer of stitches.

How can I tell if I’m a good candidate for laser skin resurfacing? Nissy

Hi Nissy, laser skin resurfacing is not recommended for those with certain skin types, skin tones, and medical conditions. This procedure may, in fact, worsen such a patient’s facial appearance. It is recommended for those with lines, wrinkles, uneven pigmentation, or superficial facial scars such as acne scarring that does not respond to gentler treatments. The ideal candidate has elastic, non-oily skin that is not prone to scarring after minor injury.  It is ideal that such potential candidates are free of any medical considerations, including prescription medication and existing health conditions that might cause unnecessary risk during the procedure or recovery period.  Above all, the ideal candidate is someone with realistic expectations for the results of the laser skin resurfacing procedure.  Those with lighter skin tones are better candidates for this particular procedure than persons with darker skin tones because there is less risk of unexpected side effects such as permanent skin discoloration.