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Initially it is not a good idea to get stitches wet in the bath or shower. You get stitches when the skin has be cut and during the initial stages of healing, it can disturb some of the fragile structures that are trying to form to aid in the healing. Washing or rinsing the site where the stitches are can remove antibiotics that have been applied to the site to protect it. Although the shower or bath water may be pretty sanitary, it still can introduce some pathogens - bath water more than showers. More importantly though, if antibiotics have been washed away, the environment around you is loaded with pathogens that now have an easier time getting a start at infecting the site of the stitches. Last, but not least, getting the stitches wet means you are also drying out the skin around them. The skin around the stitches is already damaged and removing the natural protections like the natural oils produced by the skin.

I suppose it should go without saying that if the stitches are the kind that are designed to dissolve over time then you REALLY don't want them to get wet and dissolve ahead of schedule.

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13y ago
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14y ago

If possible, a bath is better because the stitches can be kept out of the water easily. If a shower is necessary, putting a plastic shopping bag or clingfilm/wrapping plastic around the stitches and sealing the bag/plastic with tape will protect the stitches for about 10 minutes.

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9y ago

Ask you surgeon, it depends if the material used to suture was dissolvable or not.

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Q: How long until you can shower with stitches?
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