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How Long After Otoplasty Can I Swim (And Why)?

Exact Answer: 2 – 3 Weeks

Otoplasty is one of the many types of cosmetic surgeries of the 21st century. It is a surgery involving one’s ear or both ears. Otoplasty helps in correcting or adjusting the shape or position of the ears.

This surgery aids people to rectify any structural abnormality concerning their ears. Plastic surgery surgeons can help people who don’t like their ears that protrude too far from their head by modifying the shape and repositing their ears via otoplasty.

Even though otoplasty is elective surgery, it is still considered a major surgery as it involves delicate tissues of the ear and its modification. Thus, the body requires proper time to heal and recover before going back to rigorous activities like swimming, weight lifting, and exercise.

How Long After Otoplasty Can I Swim?

Typically, any strenuous activities should be avoided immediately after one has undergone a major surgical procedure. The body needs to get sufficient rest to ensure that the recovery is not hampered in any sense. Thus, post-surgery precaution by one’s surgeon should be meticulously followed without any excuses.

It is vital to abide by the doctor’s directions for post-otoplasty care to make sure that the ear heals correctly and thoroughly. For this to happen, one should avoid engaging in activity that could potentially injure one’s ears after the procedure. Such activities involve swimming, workouts, jumping, etc.

If one is an active person who loves swimming, such a restriction would be burdensome to follow. However, complete rest for 1 to 2 weeks after otoplasty is necessary for positive recovery after surgery. Thus, to avoid any unwanted complications after surgery, it is best to avoid swimming 2 – 3 weeks i.e about 14 – 20 days after the otoplasty procedure.

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The length of time one is required to wait before diving back again into the swimming pool would differ in each person’s case. Thus, one’s otoplasty surgeon would be the only person competent to tell exactly how long to wait after otoplasty to swim. However, as a general notion, 2 – 3 weeks is an acceptable period to wait before starting swimming after otoplasty.

ConditionsDuration
The time that is taken by the ear to fully heal after otoplasty8 – 12 weeks
Waiting time required by a person to be able to swim after otoplasty 2 – 3 weeks

Why Does It Take So Long After Otoplasty To Swim?

Otoplasty is a term that is widely used to refer to cosmetic ear treatments that assist in rectifying deformities and irregularities in one’s ear. Ears are undoubtedly delicate and thus take a substantial amount of time to recover after the procedure.

Doctors all around the world advise patients to refrain from engaging in any kind of rigorous activities post-surgery to avoid tearing out sutures after the otoplasty surgery is done. It is essential that one rests for a sufficient period to time to recover and build one’s way back to normalcy and have an active lifestyle post-surgery.

Duration to avoid swimming after otoplasty hugely depends on the extent of work done during the surgery. Every otoplasty surgery is different and has a different healing period. Therefore, at least for a couple of weeks after surgery, any vigorous activity should be strictly avoided.

Swimming, in particular, should be strictly resumed only after 3 to 4 weeks after otoplasty as if one goes swimming too early before the ear has sufficiently healed, this could harm the person doing so. Going swimming in the initial weeks after the surgery can result in the development of a hematoma or seroma that could cause serious complications in one’s recovery.

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Hematoma or seroma refers to the buildup of fluid beneath the skin of the ear. Treating such conditions is quite complex and difficult, thus, it is best to religiously follow all the post-otoplasty precautions sincerely to heal properly after the surgery.

Conclusion

Swimming can affect the ear after otoplasty and thus it is necessary to ensure that a sufficient time gap exists between the otoplasty surgery and the time one resumes back to their swimming routine.

In situations like these, it is best to follow and abide by precautions and recommendations given by one’s otoplasty surgeon to avoid any intricacies after the otoplasty is done. The healing process might take longer than one would expect it to take, but one needs to be patient for at least 2 – 3 weeks after the surgery before going for a swim to experience the best otoplasty results.

References

  1. https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-642-35431-1_42
  2. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.3109/00016489109134994