At NYU Langone, our surgeons encourage most people who have had hernia surgery to return to most of their daily activities as soon as possible. Bed rest is not necessary.
Your doctor may also recommend that you walk regularly during recovery. Walking doesn’t put strain on the abdomen or groin and can encourage blood circulation. You may return to work when you feel well enough.
While the surgical site heals, your doctor may tell you to restrict some activities that can aggravate the healing process, such as lifting anything heavier than 10 or 15 pounds. You may also be asked to refrain from sexual activity for one to two weeks.
Most often, our surgeons use stitches that dissolve after several weeks. The incision is covered with a waterproof dressing that’s removed in the doctor’s office during your first postsurgical visit. You can shower, but your doctor may recommend avoiding bathing or swimming while you still have this dressing.
After your first follow-up visit, your doctor usually removes any restrictions on your activities, though he or she may recommend that you stop any activity that causes symptoms of a hernia, such as pain or a bulge. Contact your doctor if this occurs.