The first few days following a laser skin resurfacing procedure are usually challenging with regard to care. The treated area will be tender, red, and swollen for the next few days or week, with some pain lasting between one and four days.
Considering that the site of treatment is very delicate, it is important that you exercise proper wound care to achieve the best possible result. Here are a few useful tips:
1. Keep the skin as moist as possible
The basic rule of wound care is that you keep the treated site consistently moist to facilitate proper healing.
2. Cold compresses for crusts that form
Don’t pick off the crusting if it forms. Instead, thoroughly soak the crust and then gently rub it off with moist gauze as follows:
Step 1: Soak using cool water
Step 2: Continue soaking with cool water frequently while at home, preferably every 1-2 hours for the first couple of days, and then every 2-4 until the bleeding or oozing stops.
Step 3: Take a large clean bowl, add some tap water, ice cubes, and a tablespoon of white vinegar for every cup of water. Place a stack of gauze pads nearby and leave them where the cold water drips on them repeatedly over time.
Step 4: Take some wet, dripping gauze pads and apply them over the treated areas, and change them every 5 minutes or so before they dry. Alternatively, you can apply the wet gauze and keep cold water dripping over it.
Step 5: Once you’ve finished the compress, pat the area dry with a clean soft towel and gently apply some Vaseline.
The objective is to soak and then gently extract any dead skin and residue. Your body will keep secreting serum in a normal response to the skin burn, and this will tend to pile up as a yellowish paste. Although it looks unsightly, it is nature’s way to help in protecting the healing skin, so don’t aggressively scrub it off.
After the crusts have completely healed and the skin has stopped oozing, the “greasy” creams will stop, and you can shower normally without the cold compress. But you should apply a moisturiser generously to the treated skin to keep it hydrated and keep it from drying as it is still healing.
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