Summer is a great time to schedule your surgery. With vacation time kicking in and everyone out at the beaches, it might be a great time to take some time off and get that surgery you really need to maximize your long-term health.
But then there’s the humidity, kids are out of school, and outdoor activities that all your friends and family want to do. You may be encouraged to get started on these before you’re ready.
It is imperative to respect and understand your surgeon’s instructions to ensure a comfortable and safe recovery. But that doesn’t mean staying in lockdown forever! Here are a few tips from the Surgery Group of Los Angeles on keeping cool and keeping safe as a surgery patient this summer.
Enjoying the Sunshine the RECOVERY WAY!
While Sun can be a great source of vitamin D, energy, and optimism for your recovery, there are some definite downsides. Too much sun exposure can lead to dehydration and make any swelling or irritation after your operation worse.
So when you head out there, make sure there is plenty of shade and you’re wearing light, breathable clothes with lots of room to let the breeze in.
As soon as you are given the okay to wear topical products on your skin, make sure to apply sunscreen of at least SPF 30 or above every day to prevent your scars from getting exposed or darkening.
Stay cool but stay out of the water (WE MEAN IT!)
It seems like a great idea, cool down in a beautiful lake in the middle of July, and let the water relax you. But with any body of water comes challenges for post-operated patients. Pools mean chlorine can irritate the skin around your surgery scars. Even the cleanest of bodies of water can have microorganisms and bacteria that while harmless for most people can cause infections for people healing from surgery.
So when can you get back in the water? 30 minutes ain’t going to cut it here. While estimates vary on the operation from 2-3 weeks to 2-3 months the key factors in deciding whether to move into a new phase of freedom of movement for a post-operative patient are:
- Has your surgeon had a chance to recently observe your recovered incisions and okayed you?
- Does your wound cause any pain or irritation?
- Is your wound completely healed?
The great news is that for most surgeries, a nice cooling shower is usually allowed one to two days post-operation.
Hydration + Nutrition = Complete Quick Recovery
With everyone moving and starting their summer body workout plans, it may be tempting to jump out there and join in the competitive desire to stay or get in shape. But there’s no reason why surgery has to stop you from getting your summer body and staying on track for recovery.
Summer is a great time for nutrition as grilling season means opportunities to try out smoked salmon recipes, or grilled chicken burgers. The season is perfect for watermelon, berries, and squashes, which when paired with enough water, can help you stay healthy and still participate in the amazing foods summer has to offer.
Final Tip!: Give your body time!
Look we get it. Summer is not meant to stay on the sidelines, but time and rest are some of the key components of the healing process. Let your body be your guide. If your exercise, your walk, or even your drive feels odd or uncomfortable, most likely it’s time to chill on that for now. The goal right now is optimal healing, and if that is your main focus you’ll be out there swimming in Lake Arrowhead in no time!
If you or a loved one have questions about a potential surgery or recovery, speak to Surgery Group of Los Angeles, or any medical professional today!