What To Wear After Surgery
Q: I'm having a Tummy Tuck, Breast lift and augmentation in a few months. What type of clothes can I wear after? Many people say that because of the swelling, my clothes won't fit. Should I buy some tracky pant dresses and maternity pants?
Jackie: It is wise of you to start planning. It is true that after surgery, you will be very swollen and that your regular clothes might not fit.
Most patients prefer clothing that is comfortable and easy to get in and out of. Tops and sports bras that zip in the front are great. It will be uncomfortable for you to try to put a shirt or sweater over your head. Sweatpants work very well. Although you will have some swelling. Right after surgery you may need clothes that can accommodate swelling. The good news is that after the breast implants your bra size will be larger, and after tummy tuck, you will have a smaller tummy to fit in pants once the swelling resolves.
The use of a post-surgical bra following breast surgery (augmentation, lift, reduction) is for both support and compression. Providing good support is more important than excessive compression. The 'support' will decrease post-operative pain and discomfort, reduce early stress on the skin closures, and help reduce dependent swelling within the breast. The 'compression' will help reduce swelling and enhance its resolution.
In fact, any type of garment that provides breast support and compression can be utilized. Immediately after the operation, surgeon place patients in a Surgilast tube top. This is a tubular elastic dressing that has a fishnet appearance. It is easy to place and avoids the need to worry about a properly fitting bra. Some patients continue this post-op and others change to a sports or other comfortable bra. I emphasize to my patients that whatever they chose to wear should provide support and compression, but most of all be comfortable. I want my patients to actually wear the garment for its benefits, so I certainly don't want the garment to increase post-op discomfort.
I recommend that patients wear post-op support and compression (every day, all day) for 6 weeks following surgery. During this time they prefer that they avoid an under wire bra. Patients can begin wearing an under wire bra after their swelling has subsided, the inframammary skin closures are healed and non-tender, and their implants have settled like they would expect.
Facelifts, Eyelifts and Rhinoplasty
Taking care of your skin after cosmetic surgeries is more complicated than after less invasive procedures because you need to treat your wounds, manage swelling, and keep up with everyday skin care for best results.
To minimize swelling, experts recommend regular use of ice or cold compresses, especially in the first three days after your surgery. Sleeping with you head elevated above your heart will also help avoid an increase in swelling overnight.
As for bruising, ask your surgeon whether you should take Arnica montana, an herbal supplement that may help minimize bruising or discolouration. I also am a big fan of Bromelin tablets (after surgery) which comes from the core of the pineapple. I also recommend eating pineapple leading up to and after surgery.
Even though your face will be sore after cosmetic surgery, it's important to continue to cleanse your skin regularly to help with healing and avoid build-up in your pores that might lead to breakouts. Try washing with mild astringent pads to cleanse sore areas without applying pressure. Then, be sure to apply a gentle, non-comedogenic moisturizer.
Make-up After Cosmetic Surgery
If your skin is intact and you have no open wounds, you can resume using makeup just a few days after your procedure. After deep chemical peels or ablative laser procedures, however, it's essential to wait until your epidermis (the top layer of your skin) has fully reformed. Be sure to check with your doctor about makeup use after any cosmetic surgery.
When you do get the go-ahead to use makeup, remember the following tips:
- Go for mineral. Many makeup manufacturers now make mineral-based lines that are gentler on your skin and provide excellent coverage.
- Combat red with green. If you have red skin or purple bruising after cosmetic surgery, a green base will help balance out those colours and give you a more natural-looking skin tone. Top this base with a powder about one shade darker than you usually wear for best results.