A lip lift is an operation that modifies the appearance of the lips to a more appealing one. It reshapes them to enhance the facial area above the lips. Most people who undergo this procedure usually have an elongated gap between their noses and lips and want to make the distance shorter. Others who undergo a lip lift do it because they feel like they have a permanent frown.
Remember that a chewing food or taking drinks require movement of the lips. It can be painful or uncomfortable for someone who has undergone a lip lift to do so. This article discusses the different kinds of lip lift procedures and gives tips on how to eat after such a procedure.
Types of Lip Lifts
1) Upper Lip Lift
This surgical procedure aims to increase the amount of lip seen and expose the teeth more. It makes your lips appear to be fuller and also shortens the distance between the base of your nose and the top lip. The operation aims at giving a person lips that look more youthful.
2) Corner Lip Lift
It is designed for people who want their faces to appear more pleasing like they are always smiling. Those who feel like they have a permanent frown opt for this type of lip lift and the edges of the mouth are the only parts a plastic surgeon will work on.
Tips on How to Eat After a Lip Lift
Chewing food usually requires movement of a group of muscles. If one muscle is not functioning well or is bruised, then you might find a task as simple as eating to be uncomfortable. Have your doctor prescribe painkillers immediately after the surgery. They will ease away the pain, and you will not have to be cautious anytime you are eating or even dread meal times. Make sure you have enough of them, or you can call your doctor in case you need a refill.
Consume Soft Foods
Unlike hard foods, the soft kinds do not require one to use a lot of energy when chewing. An example is soup that needs swallowing only. After a lip lift, consider changing your diet for a while. Foods like hard grains and fruits should be dropped for a while. The operated area needs sufficient time to heal. If it is put under undue stress, the healing process might take longer than necessary. If you still want to consume foods like meat, ensure they cook for longer than usual. Doing so will ensure they are soft enough and eating them will not require you to use up a lot of energy.
The sooner your mouth heals, the easier it will be for you to enjoy foods that you like. You can, therefore, try doing some mouth exercises. Ask a specialist to teach you the right moves. Start slowly because the operated area may still be numb or swollen. Increase the intensity level gradually to prevent the mouth muscles from relaxing once they get used to the same intensity.
Mouth exercises will slowly eliminate the stiffness you feel after the operation. It will also make eating a lot more comfortable for you since the lip movements you make while you are feeding are similar to those you will make when exercising your mouth.
The more the food you put in the mouth, the wider you will have to open it. This is not advisable for someone who just had a lip lift surgery. It might cause more bruising at the point that has been operated on or even slow down the healing process. Large amounts of food in the mouth also require a lot of energy to chew.
This is the time to make full use of your cutlery. Cut your food into small pieces to save yourself the hustle of having to open your mouth too wide or to use too much energy while chewing.
Apply Cold Compresses
The swelling of the operated area is what usually makes it impossible to talk or eat. It makes the slightest movement of the mouth unbearable due to pain. However, it can be controlled by applying cold compresses. Hold them on the affected area for some minutes like twice or thrice a day for the first one week after the plastic surgery. The swelling will go down much faster this way and it will make eating a much more comfortable task. Applying cold compresses will also hasten the healing process.
Avoid Acidic Foods
Foods that are acidic can cause some irritation, especially if you have a cut or a bruise. Give yourself time to heal before you can indulge in fruits like oranges. Stick to vegetables, grains, and fruits that have low acidic content until your doctor gives you the go-ahead to consume whatever you want.
Choose your Doctor Wisely
The healing process and the results of the operation are significantly dependent on the plastic surgeon you choose. There are those that use minimally invasive methods, so the bruising will not be extensive. Such an approach will not cause too much swelling, so eating will also be easier for you. When selecting a plastic surgeon, consider the following factors.
Andrew Jacono, MD is a certified plastic surgeon based in New York City. Dr. Jacono has been certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and has made frequent appearances on Oprah's Face to Face and Discovery Fit & Health.