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Lifestyle Changes to Make before Plastic Surgery By Stephen Hardy M.D. on August 22, 2016

Two women joggingPlastic surgery can address a wide range of issues, from the signs of aging to excess fat and loose skin. Facial plastic surgery treatments are particularly popular for their ability to smooth the skin and rejuvenate the appearance. However, before undergoing any form of plastic surgery, it's important to make simple lifestyle changes in the weeks and months leading up to surgery to prepare the body for recovery. Making lifestyle changes before plastic surgery helps our Missoula, MT patients see improved results, faster recovery, and reduced complications. To receive your personalized tips, schedule a consultation with Drs. Stephen P. Hardy and Michael Harl.

Stop Smoking

It's no surprise that smoking increases the risk of many general health issues, including lung disease and cancer, but smoking can also increase the risk of complications after surgery. Those who smoke should quit well before undergoing surgery and during, as smoking makes it more difficult for the body to heal, prolongs recovery, and increases the risk of infection. Patients should stop smoking at least four weeks before surgery and throughout the recovery process.

Provide a Detailed List of Medications to Your Surgeon

Before undergoing plastic surgery, it's important to disclose any medications, including prescribed and over-the-counter medications, supplements, or vitamins you take to your surgeon. Certain medications and vitamins can increase the risk of complications after surgery, like prolonged bleeding, or may interact poorly with anesthesia. Provide a detailed list of medications and vitamins to your surgeon to allow time for any necessary changes to be made prior to surgery.

Exercise Regularly

Exercising regularly such as getting 30 minutes of cardiovascular activity three to five days a week, helps decrease recovery time and often helps yield better surgical results. This is because those who regularly exercise tend to have firmer, tighter skin, which helps provide improved results after surgery. Additionally, regular exercise helps keep body weight at healthy levels and improves the immune system. With that said, please consult with your surgeon before exercising after surgery to prevent unnecessary complications.

Maintain a Healthy Diet

Maintaining a healthy diet helps provide the body with essential proteins and vitamins that are essential for recovery after surgery. Eating a diet rich in vegetables, fiber-packed grains, and lean meats helps keep weight down and energy up, and maintains a healthy immune system. Switching to a healthy diet before plastic surgery helps prepare the body for recovery by giving the cells the necessary nutrients to repair themselves, fight infection, and heal quickly. 


Stress, nerves, and anxiousness before surgery can impact the immune system and recovery process. Try to stay relaxed in the days leading up to surgery by taking time to care for yourself. Meditating, taking a calm bubble bath, listening to relaxing music, walking, or reading can all help decrease stress and help you prepare for surgery.

Learn More about Plastic Surgery

For more information about plastic surgery, and to find out which treatments are right for your needs, we welcome you to schedule a consultation with Drs. Hardy and Harl.

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Stephen P. Hardy, M.D.

Stephen P. Hardy, M.D.

Dr. Stephen P. Hardy is a renowned plastic surgeon with prestigious national affiliations:

  • American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS)
  • American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS)
  • American Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Association (ACPA)

To schedule your consultation, contact us online or call us at (406) 728-3811.

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