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What to Do Before Lip Fillers

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Dr. Hardik Soni

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The Complete Preparation Guide

lip filler treatment

Are you considering lip fillers to add shape, volume and definition to your pout? 

This minimally-invasive cosmetic treatment can provide beautiful, natural-looking results when performed correctly. However, adequate preparation is essential to ensure your safety, comfort and satisfaction.

As the medical director at Ethos Aesthetics & Wellness, Dr. Soni has significant expertise in cosmetic injectables like lip fillers. Our team follows meticulous protocols to deliver exceptional care with unparalleled results. 

We understand undergoing any procedure can feel stressful, so we aim to guide you through the process seamlessly.

Below, we will walk through Dr. Soni’s recommended pre-treatment plan to get your lips ready for filler. Following these instructions will set you up for the best possible experience.

1. Stop Taking Blood Thinners

A week or more before your appointment, Dr. Soni advises ceasing all medications or supplements with blood-thinning effects. These include over-the-counter pain relievers like aspirin, ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) and naproxen (Aleve).

Blood thinners raise your risk of bruising and bleeding during lip injections. Stopping them ahead of time allows their effects to fully clear your system. Be sure to check with your physician before adjusting any prescription medications.

2. Avoid Alcohol and Smoking

Similarly, you’ll want to avoid alcohol intake for at least 24 hours pre-treatment. Alcohol thins the blood, slowing clotting. It also causes vasodilation, or widening of the blood vessels, that can increase swelling and bruising.

Smoking produces related impacts on circulation and wound healing. Try your best to refrain from tobacco use 1-2 weeks before your appointment.

3. Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate

Proper hydration is vital preparation before any cosmetic treatment, lip fillers included. Be sure to drink lots of purified water leading up to your visit. Proper water intake will support circulation, promote healing and reduce injection discomfort.

4. Eat Pineapple and Bromelain

Certain foods contain enzymes that naturally reduce inflammation and bruising. Pineapple is rich in the compound bromelain, which provides these benefits. Incorporating pineapple and bromelain supplements into your diet 3-5 days pre-treatment can minimize side effects.

5. Apply Arnica Gel

Arnica montana is an herbal extract renowned for decreasing bruising, swelling and pain. When applied as a topical gel, it can help limit post-injection side effects. Begin applying it to your lips and mouth area twice daily 3-5 days before your appointment.

6. Avoid Irritants

In the 2 weeks prior, be extra gentle with your lips. Avoid picking, biting, sunburn, extreme weather, irritating products and OTC acne medicine. This protects your lips’ integrity and prevents inflammation that could hinder results.

7. Discontinue Retinoids

Retinoids like tretinoin and retinol increase skin cell turnover. While beneficial for anti-aging, they also make skin temporarily thinner. To avoid excess irritation, Dr. Soni suggests pausing retinoid use ~1 week before treatment.

8. Stay Well Rested

Your body heals best when well-rested, so be diligent about getting adequate sleep nightly in the days leading up to your lip filler appointment. If possible, avoid excess stressors as well. This will optimize your recovery.

9. Arrange Transportation

You cannot drive immediately after lip injections, so arrange for someone to drive you home post-treatment. Public transit and rideshares are not permitted either due to swelling risks. Having transport planned ahead of time ensures safety.

10. Prepare Cold Compresses

Icing the area immediately after injections promotes vasoconstriction to minimize swelling and discomfort. Have reusable ice packs ready at home to use following your visit. Frozen peas work well too! Applying cold intermittently for the first 24 hours is recommended.

11. Book Accommodations Accordingly

Most patients require 1-3 days of downtime after lip fillers to allow initial swelling and bruising to subside. If you can, schedule your treatment before a weekend or time off work to recover comfortably at home. Avoid major events or travel right after.

12. Set Realistic Expectations

Review examples of Dr. Soni’s lip filler work so you can communicate your desired look accurately. Understand that while instant augmentation is seen, it takes 2 weeks for final results to develop as swelling resolves. Be patient through the process.

13. Come Well Hydrated

Arrive at your appointment hydrated and have eaten ~1 hour prior. This prevents dizziness or lightheadedness during treatment. Opt for easily digestible foods and avoid alcohol, caffeine, NSAIDs and blood thinners as discussed.

lip filler treatment practitioner

By carefully following Dr. Soni’s pre-treatment recommendations, you can minimize side effects and set yourself up for the best lip filler experience at Ethos Aesthetics & Wellness. Our team will ensure you feel comfortable, informed and cared for every step of the way. We look forward to revealing your most beautiful pout!

Frequently Asked Questions About Preparing for Lip Fillers

What should I stop taking before lip fillers?

Dr. Soni recommends stopping all blood thinners like aspirin, ibuprofen, fish oil, and NSAIDs ~1 week before treatment. Also avoid alcohol, tobacco, and retinoids like prescription retinols.

What ingredients reduce bruising before lip injections?

Pineapple, arnica gel, bromelain supplements, turmeric, garlic, and ginger all contain compounds that limit bruising when taken ~3-5 days pre-treatment.

How long before lip fillers should I stop drinking alcohol?

Avoid alcohol intake for at least 24 hours before your lip filler appointment. Alcohol thins the blood and increases swelling risk.

What foods should I eat before lip injections?

Opt for easily digestible foods like toast, oatmeal, or eggs ~1 hour pre-treatment. Stay well hydrated with water. Avoid alcohol, caffeine, and anti-inflammatories.

Can I work out the day before lip fillers?

Yes, gentle exercise is fine the day before. But avoid strenuous workouts that significantly raise your heart rate, as this can prolong bleeding and bruising.

What should I do the night before lip fillers?

Get a full night’s rest, hydrate well, take arnica and bromelain if desired, avoid alcohol/blood thinners, and ensure you have proper transportation arranged for the next day.

Should I put anything on my lips before lip injections?

Arnica gel applied to the lips and mouth area twice daily for ~3-5 days pre-treatment can minimize bruising. Otherwise just keep lips well moisturized with lip balm and SPF.

Can I wear makeup to my lip filler appointment?

Yes, you can come with makeup on your upper face. But arrive with clean, makeup-free lips so Dr. Soni can properly sterilize and numb the area.

What should I do the morning of my lip filler appointment?

Eat a light meal, take any pre-treatment supplements as needed, thoroughly wash your face, and ensure you have arranged transportation following the visit.

How soon after lip injections can I return to normal activities?

Plan for 1-3 days of downtime to allow initial swelling and bruising to improve before returning to work or major social events. Avoid air travel for 2 weeks post-treatment.

When will I see my final lip filler results?

While some instant augmentation is visible, it takes 2 weeks for total swelling to resolve and your final enhanced pout to be revealed. Some tenderness and hardness may persist for 4-6 weeks as well.

How can I minimize bruising after my lip filler treatment?

Icing for 10-15 minutes each hour for the first 24 hours constricts blood vessels to reduce bruising. Arnica gel and bromelain supplements also help.

What should I avoid after getting lip fillers?

Avoid heat like saunas or hot tubs for 24 hours, don’t massage or manipulate the area, follow all post-care instructions, and refrain from strenuous activity for ~1 week.

Is swelling after lip injections normal?

Yes, moderate swelling and tenderness is expected for the first few days. Use cold compresses, rest, keep head elevated, and take ibuprofen to help reduce swelling. Call your provider if it is severe.

Dr. Hardik Soni

MD, Founder/Lead Physician

About Dr. Hardik Soni

Dr. Hardik Soni is the founder and Medical Director of Ethos Aesthetics + Wellness. His primary focus is on minimally invasive and non-invasive cosmetic procedures including botulinum injection (Botox and Dysport), dermal fillers (Juvederm, Restylane, Radiesse), laser hair removal, chemical peels, and laser skin rejuvenation. Dr. Soni believes in a more conservative approach and his first goal is education. Clients are able to determine the ideal treatments after discussion with Dr. Soni regarding the expected outcomes, cost, as well as risks.

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