Many people will have some kind of surgery or require sutures at some point in their lives. Luckily, many surgeries are now done with much smaller incisions and stitching techniques means that there isn’t as much scarring as there would have been previously. Even still, you might want to minimize the level of scarring you have as much as possible after surgery.
Follow these tips to keep your skin as healthy as possible.
Follow Your Post-Op Instructions to the Letter
After your procedure, you’ll be given a list of instructions on how to care for stitches on your foot, back, or wherever you have had your procedure. They will include information on how to keep the wound clean and how to spot signs of infection. It might seem like a bit of a chore, especially if it’s a while since you had your surgery, but stick with it.
Massage the Scar With Vitamin E or Specialist Oil
Massaging the affected area can help blood flow and improve reduce the time it takes to heal. Topical vitamin E is recommended, but there are also many products, often aimed at pregnant women for stretch marks, that will work too.
It’s likely you’ll need to keep doing this for many months after your surgery to get the best results.
Don’t Put Any Stress on Your Sutures
Even if you’re feeling pretty good, too much movement or exercise will put stress on your sutures, and may even reopen the incision. Your skin will be damaged further and scarring will increase.
Keep Out of the Sun
Keep your scars out of direct sunlight. Cover them up if you’re out and about or wear a high factor sunscreen. The sun’s rays can not only damage the skin but cause discoloration of the scar which will make it more prominent. Unlike healthy skin, it is unlikely to go back to its original shade.
Quit the Alcohol and Cigarettes
Smoking, along with all of its other horrible side-effects, also slows down your body’s ability to heal correctly. Alcohol is also not recommended as it can act to dehydrate you and you need to be well hydrated in order to heal well.
Don’t Pick at Anything
It’s really difficult not to pick at any dry skin or scabs that may form on the site of your sutures. It’s a bad habit to get into. Resist the urge to do this though as it is there to help the skin underneath it heal properly. If you’re concerned about how it looks, keep massaging the area with vitamin E oil and that should take care of the flaky skin.
Don’t Be Tempted to Use Cover up Too Soon
If you’re really self-conscious about your scars, you might want to cover them up as soon as possible with makeup. Putting these kinds of products on too soon can cause irritation and make things worse. If you do use coverup, look for one specially formulated to cover up scars without irritation.
Healing can be a long process, but with the right care, you can minimize the scars on your skin.