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Why You Should Stop Smoking Before Cosmetic Surgery

The dangers of smoking have been waved in our faces since we were children. Cancer warnings from tobacco use have been coming at us in the form of commercials, after-school assemblies, pop-up ads online, government labels and so many other ways. You know smoking could kill you, but the dangers of smoking before cosmetic surgery are even more significant. Drs. Paul Gorman and Renee Marshall of GLOW Surgical Arts want to make sure you know about the added risks of smoking prior to a cosmetic surgical procedure.

Smokers have a higher risk of complications after surgery.

What do all of the following have in common: inflamed scarring, intensive aftercare, skin death, a higher rate of infection, and wound separation? They all are potentially serious complications after surgery, and they are all complications that smokers are more likely to experience. Smoking constricts the blood vessels, which means there’s less oxygen in your blood cells. When there is less oxygen, your body heals at a much slower rate. Slower healing means that a wound from surgery is susceptible to the aforementioned complications, so you could end up being hospitalized for extensive after-care after your operation.

A smoking habit doesn’t just pose a threat to the healing process, it also creates complications with anesthesia. Smokers and people with exposure to secondhand smoke are significantly more at risk to require larger quantities of anesthesia as well as pain medications. These same individuals often have an increased likelihood of extended use of pain medicine after surgery, and potentially developing a dependence on these pain medications. Even if you decide to take a chance on having a slower healing time and riskier sedation process, honestly, who can afford those odds?

Your cosmetic surgery could be halted by the consequences of smoking.

We’ve discussed how smoking decreases blood circulation. This is so important that we feel the need to bring it up twice, but this time you’re not in danger of a slower healing rate. Smoking prior to surgery also means you’re in danger during the procedure. Blood flow restrictions mean that your cosmetic surgeon, who is moving around all those tissues and skin, also is struggling to leave enough blood vessels intact to maintain normal blood flow. Weakened blood flow can cause other complications, most notably clotting.

Smoking any kind of nicotine product could turn your potential happiness from the beautiful results of a cosmetic surgery procedure into a dire situation. It doesn't matter if you smoke cigarettes, if you chew tobacco, or even if you vape; you should consult with your doctors at GLOW Surgical Arts.

It’s easier said than done. Smoking is an addiction.

Your cosmetic surgeons in Redwood City, Drs. Paul Gorman and Renee Marshall, know that quitting smoking isn’t easy. You may want to try seeking some medical help like outside nicotine sources or medications such as nasal sprays, medically prescribed inhalers, nicotine patches, nicotine gum, Chantix, Zyban, or Wellbutrin. If you are interested in using any of these products, be sure that you consult your doctor about it before surgery. Whether it’s an over-the-counter nicotine substitute or a prescription your surgeon needs to know. Stopping smoking will improve your overall health, while also making you a better candidate for the cosmetic surgery that is going to give you the look you always wanted. We look forward to partnering with you on an exciting journey towards a more refreshed, natural, youthful-looking you! Call our team today at (650) 241-2209.

GLOW Surgical Arts produces beautiful results for our patients in Redwood City and throughout the Bay Area of California.