Here’s everything you need to know about liposuction aftercare. Whilst lipo is a popular cosmetic surgery, there’s more than the doctors lead you to believe. So go into it informed and you’ll get the best results with fewest complications from your cosmetic surgery.
Plastic surgery can come with complications. Pain, swelling and even possible infection after the procedure. Before we start with the smooth retraction of now sagging skin. What people rarely realise is that it’s also common if you don’t take your recovery seriously, to also get hard fat. Sometimes this can come in the format of a sheet under the skin so you appear to be plasticine, or in hard visible lumps.
In addition, if you have had an aesthetic from a certified doctor, you could end up feeling rough for a few days directly after surgery, regardless of how well you’re wearing your compression garment.
Our top tips on liposuction aftercare.
You need to wear your garment. Sorry!
Wear your compression garment. If in doubt, wear it for six weeks after your surgical treatment during the day and overnight. This will help to remove unwanted lumps and bumps, loose skin before it has retracted, but it will also to help keep you alive by preventing blood clots. So wear it day and night. Yes, it’s uncomfortable, but it’s better than the alternative!
Rest so your body can heal
Rest. But not too much. “What does that mean, we hear you cry?” Well, it means listen to your body. You’re not superman, and while it’s common to think that you’ve put yourself in this position by opting for non-essential surgery. Whilst the only reason for going under the knife was because fat was removed, your physical body doesn’t understand this. You’ve had a professional medical operation, albeit to remove fat cells. Your tissues are damaged with no warning. Let your body catch up and heal.
Often you’ll feel light-headed for a few days, weak and that’s if you only had local anaesthesia. If you went under, then chances are you’ll feel green, if not be outright throwing up.
But don’t use this as an excuse to lie on your back and give yourself the excuse to be lazy because you’re healing. You need to exercise. This doesn’t mean hitting the gym, lifting weights, or anything strenuous at first. But it means movement. Your lymphatic system works with movement and water. So drink plenty of water and walk. When you’re tired, you rest. When you’ve recovered, you walk again. You’ll start slowly and gradually speed up.
A note on working out
In terms of getting back to normal workout, listen to your body. Don’t jump into vigorous exercise. We advise nothing other than a good walk before two weeks, and even at this point take it steady. In addition to incision sites, you’ll have external bruising but you’ll also feel it internally, so it’s normal to feel moderate pain when you first go back. You may experience becoming exhausted faster than usual for you. That’s fine. This is when you stop. If you feel some ripping of tissue, not muscle, then this is normal. It’s part of your fascia stretching. And don’t forget your garment, these are typically worn during exercise sessions.
Post surgery aftercare is essential, including MLD massages
Have MLD massages (manual lymph drainage). We alluded to this above, but once your surgeon has finished his procedures and the worst is over, your lymphatic system (the skip for the body that removes unwanted waste) needs to play catch up.
You swell, and your body struggles to drain away all the fluid, and this process needs a helping hand as the system doesn’t have an internal pump in the same way the heart drives your circulation. Plus, while you do need to wear your garments (especially if you’re wearing a board), they are tinged with the downside of pushing fluid into different areas and stopping you drain effectively. So, the solution to smooth recovery is lymphatic drainage massage.
Non strenuous activity
Our advice, besides non strenuous activity, immediately post-operative is to make regular visits to an experienced post surgery specialist. Like us at Essential Feeling. MLD will GENTLY move the fluid out off your body so you can recover faster, have, less risk of infection and complications. It doesn’t hurt. You will relax and enjoy this process, feeling lighter at the end and more flexible. Typically, soreness that you experienced will ease for the next few hours and you’ll feel more able to get on with some physical activities.
Post MLD, you will notice a reduction of swelling from the support of lymph flowing more freely and the shape your body will return a little more clearly.
We recommend you can have these up to daily. Although not everyone needs them so regularly. We prefer to judge your progress from session to another so that we tailor your healing pattern to your precise needs.
Start them anything from 24 to 48 hours post lipo procedure. The process is a light touch. You won’t be too tender for it. And it’s not uncommon for people to come to us still wearing absorbent pads that were given to them by the doctors.
Other manual therapies, not just MLD are important
There isn’t enough said about the benefits of other types of physical therapy for liposuction aftercare. Choose someone who knows all about myofascial release so that you get your flexibility back after wearing your compression garment. Also, deep tissue massage can be helpful for hard fatty deposits. If you can find someone (like us) who also combines these techniques with deep oscillation, radio frequency and cavitation, you’ll be set.
We use these to drain stubborn swelling, remove fat deposits your surgeon may have missed during your lipo and to tighten any loose skin. Having someone qualified, certified and experienced in several disciplines is great because you can contact us and we’ll know how to help you best.
Having someone like this on your side is also great because they/ we will help to spot signs of infection, although to be fair, if you have regular liposuction aftercare sessions you’re less likely to suffer with this, anyway.
Follow doctor’s advice
Take your medication as instructed by your doctor. There’s no point being a hero. All that may occur then is that your healing will take more time because you’re in too much pain from the incision and invasive surgery performed to move enough to help your body heal. So take care of yourself and follow your surgeon or nurse’s prescription for pain medicine.
What you put in your body is still important during liposuction aftercare.
Amend your diet. Particularly at first. You’re not moving enough to burn off the same carbs and normal, so don’t consume them and you’ll get a better finish. Same with smoking and alcohol. These give you a greater chance of infection as you heal slower.