What is the importance of compression after plastic surgery?
While it may not receive much attention, the road to recovery after plastic surgery is sometimes long and difficult. Bruising, swelling, and pain are some of the post-op side effects patients need to face after cosmetic procedures. During the healing process, compression is imperative not only for minimizing pain but also for creating beautiful and lasting results.
Keep reading below to learn more about compression garments and how they can make your healing process more comfortable.
What are compression garments?
Compression garments are designed to provide even pressure on different body parts in order to support the healing process, accelerate recovery, and provide comfort to patients after plastic surgery. They must be specifically designed for immediate post-operative care, which means must be wireless, comfortable, and breathable.
Compression garments come in different shapes and sizes to accommodate different needs. For example, after a breast augmentation surgery, you will need a post-surgery bra, while for a facelift, you will need a facelift wrap with cold packs. Your plastic surgeon will give you instructions on what kind of garment suits your specific procedure.
Benefits of wearing compression garments
Swelling, also known as edema, occurs when a part of the body increases in size as a result of white blood cell accumulation and excess fluid trapped in the underlying tissue.  It’s a natural response of the body to healing and is one of the most common post-op symptoms after plastic surgery.
That said, compression to the affected area can reduce the amount of fluid build-up, minimize swelling, and promote better and faster healing. Although the time swelling lasts after surgery varies based on the type of surgery and your body’s ability to heal, it typically resolves within two to three weeks.
During the healing process, compression garments can provide comfort and stability to patients. Compression garments are recommended for nearly all cosmetic procedures – be it liposuction, facelift, or breast augmentation.
Apart from providing comfort, compression can also promote healing and help patients return to their normal activities sooner, like working and walking.
Another common side effect after cosmetic surgery is bruising around the surgical site as a result of damaged blood vessels.
Maintaining constant pressure on the area with compression garments can prevent bruising by minimizing the number of red blood cells escaping toward the surface of the skin. Bruising typically lasts for one to two weeks, but the sooner it goes down, the faster patients can see final results.
Reduce visible scarring
Cosmetic procedures that require incisions are likely to cause minor scarring. To make scars less visible in the weeks and months after surgery, it’s essential to hold the incisions in place – and compression garments do exactly that.
By applying compression, incisions are able to heal faster while limiting the risk of an infection to the surgical site.
Help reduce pain
After a major surgical procedure like breast augmentation, it’s normal to feel pain and discomfort. Although wearing a compression garment won’t make the pain disappear, it will, without a doubt, provide comfort and stability to the surgical area. At the same time, it will also make movements like walking, sneezing, and coughing feel more manageable.
Improve overall results
The benefits of compression garments for your comfort and results are undeniably worth the investment. When worn correctly, compression provides support to the underlying tissue while it heals and helps the skin contract to the new body contour. At the same time, it promotes blood circulation in order to reduce the risks associated with surgery, such as blood clots.
The result? Faster and long-lasting results.
Ensuring the right fit
Finding a compression garment that fits well can be a daunting task. Compression should feel snug and comfortable at all times, so make sure that the compression garment is neither too loose nor too tight. As the swelling goes down with time, you might need to adjust to a tighter fit.
The best way to ensure the right fit is to consult our size charts available on each product page. The measurement area might vary depending on the type of garment you are looking at.
If you need tailored advice, reach out to us, and our advisors will be more than happy to provide a fitting consultation.
How long should you wear compression garments after plastic surgery
For the first two to four weeks after your surgery, you should wear compression garments at all times, except when you shower. As your body starts to heal, your surgeon might instruct you to switch to only a few hours a day – even though some patients choose to wear compression garments for longer time.
The period might vary depending on the type of procedure, the incisions made, and your overall health. Seek advice from your doctor regarding the period of time you should be wearing compression garments after plastic surgery.
Plastic surgery can help you achieve your desired look, enhance your appearance, and boost your confidence. The road to recovery after surgery might seem intimidating to many men and women but with the correct after-care and the right compression garments, the healing process can feel more manageable and comfortable.
While this article serves as a general guide to the importance of compression after plastic surgery, it’s important to recognize that each individual will experience recovery differently. Your surgeon will provide you with a post-operative care plan tailored to your needs and the type of surgery.
 Mayo Clinic. 2022. Edema - Symptoms and causes.
 Berjeaut RH, Nahas FX, Dos Santos LKIL, Filho JDP, Ferreira LM. Does the use of compression garments increase venous stasis in the common femoral vein? Plast Reconstr Surg. 2015 Jan;135(1):85e-91e. doi: 10.1097/PRS.0000000000000770. PMID: 25539354.
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