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Recovery from Laser Surgery

Laser Timeline

  • Your skin will be very raw, and day 3 will be the peak of redness and crusting.
    Be very diligent about the vinegar soaks and Aquaphor. The vinegar is used to soak and remove the crusting so that the skin will heal evenly. The Aquaphor is applied as a thin layer to function as a liquid bandage and prevent infection.
  • Infection is the enemy of an excellent result. Do not sleep with your pets. Do not apply anything to your skin other than Aquaphor for the first 7 days. Do not allow the crust to build up unattended to by the vinegar soaks. Do NOT smoke. Do not skip your antiviral medicine. Do not swim in a hot tub, pool, or the ocean. Do not touch the lasered area without washing your hands vigorously first.
  • Start your oral medication (Valtrex, Famvir, or acyclovir) on the day of surgery and take as directed to prevent a herpetic breakout.
  • Patients experience a variable amount of redness after laser. Redness will be cherry-red for 7 days, pink for 3 weeks, and then will slowly fade week by week until it resolves at around 2-3 months. Younger patients (30s-40s) will heal much more quickly. Diabetes and smoking significantly delay wound healing and increase risk of infection. Avoid smoking for 2 weeks prior and 2 weeks after laser, if you cannot quit entirely.
  • During the healing process, you should AVOID SUNLIGHT – wear sunglasses, and a hat when going outside. It is important you do not expose your newly lasered skin to the sun for at least 6 weeks. You will notice redness worsens very quickly if you are exposed to sun while you are still healing. Sunscreen (SPF 45+) should be applied daily regardless of weather or activities. ALL redness goes away – this just takes time (2-3 months).
  • You may wash your face twice daily with either Cetaphil gentle cleanser or Dove. Wash gently using your hands. Pat dry with a soft towel. Do NOT rub the area.
  • As the skin heals, itching may occur as a part of the normal wound-healing process. If your skin feels dry and tight, you can apply additional Aquaphor. You can take oral Benadryl to relieve the itching.
  • You can start using foundation/makeup to cover up the redness 7-10 days after your laser treatment.

Contact Us

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    The Center for Eye and Facial Plastic Surgery
    35 Clyde Road, #104
    Somerset, NJ 08873
    Monday – Friday: 8:30a – 4:30p

    Livingston Office
    22 Old Short Hills Rd Suite 202
    Livingston, NJ 07039
    Monday: 9:00a – 5:00p
    Tuesday: 12:00p – 7:00p
    Wednesday – Friday: 9:00a – 5:00p

    P: (609) 608-0142
    F: (855) 644-0469

    Contact Us 609-608-0142