Everyone knows that having a baby changes things. Gone are the days when you got a full eight hours of sleep; gone are the days when it was easy to go out on a whim on a Friday night; and gone, too, are your once flat stomach and perky breasts. Friday nights excepted, the good news is that you’re able to get some parts of your life back after pregnancy. Eventually, the baby will sleep through the night, and so will you. And with the help of a little plastic surgery, a tummy tuck, for instance, or a mommy makeover, you can get some of your pre-baby body back.
What a Tummy Tuck Does
Also called an abdominoplasty, a tummy tuck can help make your stomach flat and taut once again. It’s fairly common for women, even women who had flat tummies pre-baby, to end up with a stomach pooch after baby. Depending on your specific concerns, a tummy tuck can help tighten skin or muscle, remove extra fat from the area, or conceal certain types of scars, such as c-section scars.
When combined with other surgeries like liposuction, a breast lift or breast augmentation, and performed on mothers, the procedure is often called a mommy makeover. Since every mother’s concerns are different, a tummy tuck and mommy makeover is a completely customizable surgery.
Reasons for a Tummy Tuck
There are plenty of reasons why you might want a tummy tuck after pregnancy. No matter what your reasons are, it’s important that you have a plan in place for recovery afterwards. You might need someone to watch the kids, for example, and you might want to make sure that your spouse will be around to give you plenty of help and support, particularly during the first two weeks after your surgery.
Extra Skin in the Abdominal Area
Your stretch marks are proof that the skin in your tummy area stretched out during your pregnancy. Further proof is that your skin just didn’t bounce back after the baby was born. Where things once were smooth and taut, now there’s a bit of a droop. No number of crunches or sit ups will get rid of that extra skin. Dieting won’t help, either.
If your main post-pregnancy concern is a bit of loose skin in the abdominal area, you might be best off with a mini tummy tuck. A mini tummy tuck uses a smaller incision than a full tummy tuck and also produces less dramatic results. But, if you’ve just got a small amount of extra skin, it might be all you need.
In the case of a considerable amount of loose skin, perhaps after being pregnant and giving birth several times, and if there is a bit of extra fat, too, you might be best served by having a full tummy tuck performed. The full procedure does need a bigger incision, and produces a longer scar. But, many women find they can easily hide their scar with a swimsuit bottom or with a standard pair of underwear.
Although a tummy tuck produces its own scar, it’s also a valuable surgery for covering up other types of scars. If you had a C-section when delivering your child or children, you are likely to have a scar running across your abdomen. A tummy tuck will conceal the scar by lifting the skin over it.
After pregnancy, some women experience a separating of the abdominal muscles, called diastasis recti. The split muscles cause a number of issues, from creating a tummy pooch to causing back pain and constipation. While some women are able to bring their muscles back together through therapy and exercise, others need surgery. If you’ve had kids and are dealing with diastasis recti, a tummy tuck might be a treatment option.
A full tummy tuck will focus on tightening the muscles, as well as on tightening the skin. In fact, in a lot of cases, women who have a tummy tuck to tighten their stomach muscles also need to have a fair amount of loose skin removed, as the tightening of the muscles increases skin laxity.
You Want to Feel More Confident
In many cases, a tummy tuck after pregnancy does more than improve the physical appearance of your abdominal area. It can also improve how you feel about yourself and make you more confident in your appearance.
Pregnancy can really change the way your body looks, and coupled with the significant life changes that having a baby brings, it can be difficult to feel confident in your new body. While a tummy tuck might not improve all areas of your life, it can help give you the confidence you need to feel proud about your body and about being a mom.
You’re Finished Having Children
One final reason to have a tummy tuck after pregnancy: you’re finished having kids and are ready to take your body back. Surgeons typically recommend waiting to have a tummy tuck or any surgery involved in a mommy makeover until after you’ve had your last child, as getting pregnant again can undo or change your results. Once you’re sure that your last pregnancy was really your last, you can start considering surgery to help you get your body back.
Leading Houston plastic surgeon Dr. Paul Vitenas regularly performs tummy tucks and full mommy makeovers on women who are seeking a flatter stomach and improved body contour after baby. To learn more about the surgery and to see if you’re a good candidate, call 281-484-0088 to schedule a consultation with Dr. Vitenas today.