Great! You just decided to get that surgical procedure you’ve wanted for the past few days. If your surgeon of choice were up to mark, the procedure would’ve been relatively painless.
In many cases, you may also be given some medications to take, some in the form of lotions and others in form of creams to apply to the operated area.
However, those medications would only be effective if you take good care of the area in other ways. Regardless of the procedure, there are a few tips that you need to follow to improve your recovery and allow your skin to attain its desired appearance.
Protect the area from sunlight
If there is anything that discolors the skin, it is going out into the sun with no protection. Even in normal conditions, sunlight has the potential to not only discolor your skin but also damage it beyond repair.
“The first few days after having a procedure, it’s best to avoid the direct sun,” says Steven Hopping, MD, president of the American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery.
The ultraviolet radiation, which composes sunlight, is responsible for causing sunburns and damaging the topmost layer of your skin.
After surgery, this effect is amplified even more, making it necessary to protect your skin using sunscreen lotions. Ideally, you want to use a mild sunscreen, and try to use different approaches to keep your skin safe.
Keep area covered
Using sunscreens is only necessary if you have no other option but to expose the surgical area. If such is the case, then carrying a scarf with you is a great option.
When going into the sunlight, wrapping the scarf around your face and neck regions would keep it protected, and its best to go for a light-colored scarf.
A lighter scarf would deflect incoming light, and also keep the area safe against dust, debris, or other atmospheric pollutants.
Besides, a scarf looks chic and can be matched to any outfit you are wearing, while retaining its practicality.
Use palliative remedies
In case your skin is irritated, you can take care of the symptoms through common household items.
A good way to alleviate irritation and redness is to apply an icepack to the area and keep it in place.
Alternatively, you can use ice cubes in a plastic bag to the same effect, but make sure that the bag doesn’t leak, and drench any bandages.
Do not apply any unapproved creams and serums
There might be creams, ointments, and lotions you are using as part of your daily skincare routine that is not approved.
Although your skin might’ve adapted to these over time, and would be working effectively with you, your skin profile changes after surgery.
For example, the procedure of microneedling requires a repeated insertion of needles into your skin to stimulate collagen production.
After this procedure is complete, your skin is left with cavities that lead directly to the lower parts of your skin, which may be sensitive. Applying any creams to this skin can irritate, and increase its redness as a result.
Have a healthy diet
After surgery, your skin requires nutrients to rebuild itself. If you had a balanced diet before the procedure took place, then recovery wouldn’t be a hassle for you.
However, maintaining that diet after surgery is important. As your skin is in its healing phase, it would need materials to reconstitute itself.
Therefore, a diet rich in nutrients is needed, as well as an ample amount of water to keep you hydrated.
Resist the urge to pick
A little bit of irritation and redness after surgery is normal. However, what’s not normal is picking at the surgical site for relief.
Unlike an itchy pimple or zit, which is also not suitable to scratch, skin, that has been operated on, is a lot more sensitive than you think.
The increase in blood flow is accompanied by heightened sensitivity, which tends to exaggerate even the most minor of discomfort.
A better alternative is to scratch somewhere close to the area and imagine scratching the area in your head. Your mind would be tricked into believing that the irritated area has been scratched, causing relief.
Stay in a temperature-controlled environment
The sensitivity of your skin is directly proportional to temperature. Staying in a hot and humid place after surgery isn’t good for your skin, as it rids it of two things that are needed to maintain skin health: temperature and humidity.
On a hot and humid day, your skin would do its best to sweat out and cool itself. However, the humidity would prevent your sweat from being dried out, causing you to feel sticky and uncomfortable.
What’s best is to turn on your air conditioner, and limit the time you spend outdoors.
If you have had a procedure performed on your face or head, it would be ideal to leave smoking until your skin has had time to heal.
On its own, smoke is an irritant and tends to inflame your skin. To allow the skin to heal fully without hindrances, avoid smoking for a few days after surgery.
After getting any surgical procedure done, you need to minimize the risk of irritation by making sure to dress properly.
If you have gotten a procedure done near your face and head region, try to wear clothes that don’t go over the top of your head.
This means no shirts, sweaters, and pullovers, and instead opting for jackets, buttoned shirts, and shawls. These garments would allow your face to stay untouched, and prevent fabric strands and fibers, irritating, and possible damage.
When in doubt, call the doc.
Perhaps the best way to take care of your skin after surgery is to listen to what your doctor has to say. If you have any doubts regarding skincare, giving your doctor a call isn’t a bad idea in the least.
If you are in the New York area, Dr. Victoria Karlinsky-Bellini at New Look New Life Cosmetic arts is an excellent choice.
Having years of experience, she is a skilled surgeon who takes pride in her work and treats every patient like a celebrity.
- After Cosmetic Surgery: Taking Care of Your Skin
- Taking Care of Your Skin After Plastic Surgery
- Beverly Fischer, 13, December, 2017. Tips For Post-Plastic Surgery Care