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DO’s and DON’Ts

Living with Lymphoedema, there are things you can do and avoid to help keep yourself as well as you can be…

Do …

•  keep your skin well moisturised
•  treat any cuts/grazes quickly with antiseptic and or a dressing
•  use insect repellents to prevent insect bites
•  use factor 15 or higher on swollen skin in hot weather
•  use an electric razor if shaving
•  wear rubber gloves for household chores
•  wear gardening gloves when gardening
•  make sure all swollen areas are covered with compression garments
•  wear compression all day ( except if you have cellulitis)
•  wear compression garments when exercising
•  make sure there are no creases or wrinkles in your compression garments
•  make sure your compression fits properly and get it renewed regularly
•  wash garments at 30degrees, do not tumble dry or dry on a radiator
•  watch out for signs of cellulitis and get it treated quickly
•  when travelling get up for short walks if on a train or aeroplane
•  if travelling by car take frequent stops
•  when travelling do simple exercises – shoulders/fingers/feet
•  when travelling drink plenty of water
•  wearing a second compression garment can be useful during a long flight
•  deep breathing exercises are helpful for improving lymph drainage
•  use Simple Lymphatic drainage (SLD self massage) this helps lymph move out of the swollen areas – get your therapist to show you how to do it. Videos/DVDs are available from the LSN ( see Links page)

Don’t ..

•  take hot baths and saunas
•  walk around barefoot
•  take excessive exercise – build up slowly so you know your limits
•  wear high heeled shoes
•  wear tight shoes
•  wear tight jewellery
•  wear underwear with narrow or tight bands or straps
•  wear elasticated cuffs on sleeves or socks
•  have injections or blood pressure taken on affected areas

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