How Soon Can I Drink Alcohol After Cosmetic Surgery?

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Following your plastic surgeon’s post-operative instructions is important for ensuring a safe and smooth recovery. If you ever have any questions about your recovery, it’s best to reach out to your surgeon, so they can offer you advice on how to navigate the healing period. One question that some patients are hesitant to ask is when they can resume alcohol consumption after cosmetic surgery. This is perfectly normal to wonder, as alcoholic drinks can often feel like an important part of social events or a person’s lifestyle.

Whether you undergo facelift surgery, breast augmentation, liposuction, or another procedure, Dr. Zemmel generally advises patients to avoid alcohol for at least one to two weeks after surgery — and only after you have finished taking your pain medications. This is because mixing alcohol with painkillers can be a dangerous combination, putting you at risk of damaging your wounds and over-exerting yourself. In addition, alcohol can make your post-operative swelling and bleeding last longer, as well as cause any discomfort you’re experiencing to be worse.

Once you’re cleared to safely drink alcohol again, it’s best to do so in moderation. By limiting how much you’re drinking as your body recovers, you’re aiding the healing process and can potentially improve your results in the process. This goes along with eating a nutritious diet and staying well hydrated to set yourself up for a smooth recovery.

When it comes to alcohol after cosmetic surgery, you should adhere to your surgeon’s advice, and when you do resume consumption, don’t overdo it. While one to two weeks is an appropriate time frame for many patients, you should talk with your surgeon to determine when it is safe for you to drink alcohol again after your specific surgery.

*Blog originally published on April 2, 2020.