When Can I Swim After Surgery?

Recovering from cosmetic surgery can be done with minimal discomfort or time away from work. That is, of course, if you take the necessary measures to ensure proper healing! Many patients want to return to their active lifestyles sooner than they should.

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If you want to go swimming after cosmetic surgery, you’ll want to make sure you take the right precautions to avoid any complications. The following are some key tips you can use to return to the swimming pool or beach as soon as possible!

Post-Surgery Care

If the summer season is upon you and you’ve just undergone cosmetic surgery, you might be wondering if you’ll have to miss all of the activities you normally enjoy. But you don’t have to sacrifice your summer if you take care to allow full recovery of your procedure.

There are still many ways that you can stay active during the post-surgery period. Activities that are light in intensity are usually safe after your procedure. Walking along the beach, and general poolside activities are completely safe.

The main concern is around getting into the water. Depending on the nature of the surgery—whether a simple breast augmentation or mommy makeover—you want to ensure that you don’t compromise the healing process.

Risks of Swimming

The time immediately after your surgery is the most critical. Swimming can be problematic and compromise the ultimate results you get from the procedure.

Submerging yourself in water can cause stretching of scars. This is particularly true in the early stages. In addition, blood pressure can go up and increase the likelihood of internal issues such as bleeding.

If you’ve undergone a tummy tuck, you may need to wait as long as 6 weeks, due to the treatments applied to the abdominal muscles.

If incisions are not completely healed, you’ll remain at risk for infection if exposed to the bacteria and microorganisms that live in pools and ocean water. A 4 to 6 week recovery period will ensure that your skin has the necessary protection from these organisms before swimming.

Secondary to the risks of water, exposure to the sun can keep scars visible over time. In order for them to heal properly, and prevent future detection, you’ll want to use an effective sunscreen during your summer activities.

What You Can Do for Best Results

In general, cosmetic surgeons tell their patients to avoid intense physical activity for 4 weeks after undergoing a procedure. Scabs can remain for up to 8 weeks, and can be used as a guide in knowing that you might still be vulnerable to infection.

Maintain the incisions by keeping them thoroughly cleaned according to your doctor’s recommendations. Your doctor will likely use follow-up appointments to evaluate the condition of incisions. Your best choice is to follow the recommendations and avoid moving too quickly through the process!

Knowing when is safe to swim after cosmetic surgery will ensure that you get the best results with minimal complications. By keeping incisions clean and avoiding early exposure to water, you’ll prevent any unwanted infection or visible scars over time.

August 27, 2014
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