It is perfectly normal for lips to start swelling after having lip fillers. This is caused by the trauma of the injections but will disappear in just a couple of days after the procedure. There are a couple of tricks to help reduce the swelling and avoid bruising, read on to learn more about how to reduce swelling after lip fillers.
Why do lips swell after lip fillers?
It is perfectly normal for your lips to swell and bruise after getting lip injections but everybody is different and the severity of the swelling will be different from person to person. The reason your lips can swell is because of the following reasons: natural body reaction, quality of injections and procedure and the use of anti-swelling measures (like applying ice straight after the procedure). The last two refer to the way the procedure was executed by your doctor. The quality of the injections can have a huge impact on the swelling.
Another reason for swelling is the hyaluronic acid, which is used in fillers. HA binds with the water particles of the skin and can temporarily make the lips look puffed.
Here is a brief overview of the lip filler swelling stages. After the first day of your treatment, a large part of the swelling should be reduced. By day 2 or 3, most of the pain and swelling should be gone and you can start seeing the results of your treatment. On day 4 or 5, all the swelling should be gone and you can start seeing the full effect of the injections.
How to reduce swelling after lip fillers
There are lots of different ways of reducing swelling after getting lip fillers. Just know that it is perfectly normal for your lips to be swollen and even bruised in the first couple of days after your procedure. There is no need to worry. The swelling can appear right after your treatment or can show up later. If you are still experiencing swelling a month after your procedure, it is highly recommended to contact your doctor.
Remember that each person reacts differently to having lip fillers, some people are more prone to bruising than others. This article should not replace any real medical advice and should be used as a guideline on how to care for your lips. Reach out to your doctor or aesthetician for any specific questions regarding your lip filler treatment.
Listed below are some of the best remedies you can try to help reduce the swelling and any other discomfort.
1. Use an ice pack right after the procedure
Your lips will most likely be swollen after your dermal filler procedure, this is completely normal and this will also disappear in the next couple of days. Applying an ice pack will help reduce the swelling, itching and bruising. Straight post treatment the ice pack can be applied every 5-10 minutes depending on the swelling and for up to 6 hours. Make sure to use a cloth or towel around the ice pack so it doesn’t stick to your lips and cause more pain.
It is very likely that your doctor will give you a cold compress or ice pack which you can hold against your lips straight after the procedure.
2. Apply bruising cream
Using a bruising cream like the Bentpla Gel
will help speed up the bruising healing process as creams like this have anti-swelling, healing and regenerative qualities. Apply the cream once in the morning and once at night until all bruises have disappeared.
3. Don’t do intense workout in the next 24-48 hours
In the first 24-48 hours after the procedure, avoid all intense and unnecessary workout. A raised heart rate or elevated blood pressure can increase the swelling or bruising of your lips. Additionally, any stretching exercises such as yoga or pilates can involve head down positions, which will increase the blood flow to the face and make the swelling worse.
If you do want to get some workout done, stick to just walking and keep your heart rate under 100.
4. Stay hydrated and healthy
Drink enough water and eat hydrating, healthy fruits or vegetables to help your body heal and to mobilise fluids. Avoid food which has an excess of sodium as this might also increase the swelling.
Do not drink any alcohol after your treatment as alcohol works as a blood thinner and can also increase bruising, inflammation and swelling. Drinking alcohol should be avoided in the first 24 hours after getting lip fillers. It is also highly recommended to not have any alcohol a couple of days before your procedure.
5. Avoid high temperatures in the next 48 hours
High temperatures can make the swelling worse, so avoid visiting spas, saunas, steam rooms or other places with high temperatures. For the best results after getting lip dermal fillers, you want to be in a cool and calm area.
6. Sleep with your head on an elevated pillow
Do not sleep with your face down and try to sleep with your head on an elevated pillow as this will minimize the blood flow to the treated area and to reduce any additional swelling. Do this for at least 3 nights to ensure your new fillers will stay in place. If you want to make sure you don't accidentally turn around while sleeping, then you can use a wrap around neck pillow to stabilize your head.
7. No makeup in the next 24 hours
Avoid covering your lips with anything, except for bruising or anti-swelling cream, especially not with lipstick or tints. Using makeup might irritate your lips more and prolong the healing process. It is recommended to give your lips at least a day to recover and become less sensitive before applying lipstick.
A great tip is not to book your lip filler treatment the day before an important happening or event. You want to give your lips time to heal and get the best results. Schedule your appointment at least one week before that special party of event you want to attend.
8. Don’t smoke
Smoking after having lip fillers is highly discouraged as this might increase the risks of infections. Smoking should not influence the outcome of the treatment, but smoking dries out the skin and lips and this can lead to more irritated lips. Wait at least a day before having your first cigarette. If possible, try to avoid being around people who smoke.
9. Avoid medication
Even though there are plenty of over the counter remedies available to reduce the swelling it is highly discouraged to avoid taking any anti-swelling medications, especially if this was not recommended by your doctor or practitioner.
10. Do Not Fly
Just to be on the safe side, it is highly discouraged to fly as you want to avoid cabin pressure for a prolonged period of time. Because of the procedure, the lips are already under a lot of pressure and needs time to heal.
When to worry?
In most cases the swelling will subside after a couple of days, but sometimes it is possible that there is something more serious at hand. If you are experiencing any of the following signs, make sure to contact your doctor:
- Swelling and inflammation that lasts longer than a month
- Intolerable pain
- Pain that lasts longer than a week
- Vascular occlusion
- Cold sores
If you are experiencing one of the side effects mentioned above after having lip fillers, contact your doctor straight away.
Frequently asked questions
How to reduce swelling after lip injections?
There are lots of different ways of reducing the swelling after lip fillers, like applying ice, staying hydrated, avoiding workout and much more.
How long before the swelling after lip fillers disappear?
Most of the swelling should have disappeared after just a day or two, and one week later all the swelling and bruising should be gone, but this differs from person to person.