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How to reduce swelling after liposuction

Updated February 21, 2017

Swelling occurs after liposuction during the healing process. There will always be some swelling after surgery, but taking the right steps will greatly reduce the amount of swelling and discomfort you will have. Here are the following things you should do to help reduce your swelling after surgery.

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  1. Wear compression garments. A compression garment is a very tight-fitting cloth that fits around the healing area. The garment holds your fresh wounds in place and reduces the swelling of the surrounding areas. The constant pressure from the compression garments heals your skin in a more even matter. Compression garments can be very uncomfortable, but it is essential that you wear them for the length of time that your doctor prescribed. This is one of the most efficient ways to reduce swelling after liposuction.

  2. Take anti-inflammatory medication. Most likely your doctor has prescribed you pain medication to help during your healing process. In addition, the medication prescribed to you will most likely also contain an anti-inflammatory to reduce swelling. Ask your doctor if you may also take a dose of over-the-counter headache medicine such as Advil every 4 hours. In most cases, your doctor will give you the go-ahead, and this will also help reduce swelling.

  3. Consider visiting a massage therapist. Certain massage therapists specialise in lymphatic drainage massage therapy. This speeds up the process of draining lymphatic fluids from the bruising that occurs during the healing process, which in turn greatly reduces swelling. Ask your doctor if he thinks this is a good idea for your specific case. If so, attend a massage session two to three times a week for the first 2 weeks, and then continue once per week until your healing is complete.

  4. Follow the list of "do nots." There are a few things you should not do while you are healing from liposuction. Unlike normal injuries or average surgeries, do not apply ice or heating products to liposucted areas. Also, do not allow water to touch the area, and don't soak in a bath or pool. In addition, it is important not to clean your wounds with hydrogen peroxide.

  5. Maintain a healthy diet. It is important to drink a lot of water and stay hydrated during your healing process. Healing from liposuction takes a lot out of your body and you can easily become dehydrated, which would cause swelling. Make sure to eat healthy meals three times a day and try not to snack on processed foods. Keeping your body healthy and hydrated is key to maintain a healthy immune system while healing.

  6. Warning

    Consult your doctor before taking anti-inflammatory medication. Consult your doctor before receiving lymphatic drainage massage therapy.

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Things You'll Need

  • Compression garments
  • Anti-inflammatory medication
  • Lymphatic drainage massage therapy

About the Author

H.C. Hisel

H.C. Hisel has worked for the past nine years as a professional writer, dancer, musician, painter and photographer. Hisel had her own weekly newspaper column in the Banana 411, a newspaper for kids. Her articles have been published in various print markets and online, including Trails.com and Golflink.com.

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