If you’re a mom or someone who’s lost a lot of unwanted weight, then you should be able to feel proud of your accomplishments. Unfortunately, changes in the body can compromise self-esteem, and sometimes make it difficult to feel great about yourself. The stomach is often the most pressing concern for women and men who have sagging skin and “problem areas” of stubborn fat. While diet and exercise can improve some of these issues, sometimes natural methods just aren’t enough to get the desired look. In these cases, tummy tuck surgery might be a good option. However, the procedure is not right for everyone. Let’s take a look at the benefits and drawbacks of this popular surgery.
What Is a Tummy Tuck?
A tummy tuck is a surgical procedure to improve the appearance of the stomach area following childbirth or massive weight loss. It is different from liposuction of the stomach, as the procedure also addresses excess skin and loose stomach muscles, which prevent the tight and toned appearance many people covet but are unable to attain.
The Benefits of Tummy Tuck Surgery
Naturally, there are significant benefits to tummy tuck surgery. Here are some results patients can expect following the surgery and healing process:
Pregnancy does more than stretch out the skin; it can also stretch out the stomach muscles themselves. These vertical muscles are almost pulled apart by pregnancy, and when this happens, exercises to tone the tummy just don’t work, and can even make the problem worse. Tummy tuck surgery pulls these muscles back together and allows the patient to pursue a toned stomach once again.
No More Loose Skin
Skin is an elastic and retractable organ, but there is only so much it can do to repair itself following extreme stretching. This often results in loose, hanging skin that compromises the aesthetics of the stomach area. During a tummy tuck, excess skin is trimmed and tightened for a youthful appearance.
Resolution of Problem Areas
Fat reduction is just a small part of the tummy tuck process, but it is vital to the success of the procedure. Most people have stubborn fat in this area that does not respond to diet and exercise. During a tummy tuck, excess fat is removed to improve the overall stomach contour.
The Drawbacks of Tummy Tuck Surgery
Unfortunately, tummy tuck surgery does have its downsides as well. While it is a highly effective procedure that most patients feel is worth the drawbacks, they do need to be considered before you move forward.
One of the biggest drawbacks of tummy tuck surgery is the resulting large scar. While this can be hidden by clothing and even swimsuits, there is only so much it can be reduced. The scar will depend on how well you heal, and can be difficult to predict prior to surgery.
The tummy tuck is an extensive procedure that unfortunately requires a relatively difficult recovery period. Most patients return to work within a couple of weeks, but other normal activity, including exercise, must be postponed further. Numbness and swelling can take months to subside. The recovery process can be limiting and uncomfortable, but assuming the surgery goes well, the results should be worth the effort.
As with other plastic surgery procedures, tummy tuck surgery does not come cheap and is not covered by insurance. Financing is typically an option, as most people cannot afford the surgery out of pocket, but the payments may be a financial obligation you may be unwilling to take on.
Tummy Tuck Timing
So when should you pursue a tummy tuck? It is advised for women to wait until they are done having children, as a subsequent pregnancy could undo all the work of the surgery. Additionally, patients should be at a stable weight before undergoing a tummy tuck. Aside from that, patients just need to be adults in good health who do not smoke. Otherwise, the best time is whenever you feel ready.
Is It Right for You?
A tummy tuck is appropriate for many patients, but it’s not the right approach for some. The procedure is quite invasive and can produce dramatic results, so it’s best for people who are in good health, have realistic expectations, and significant sagging skin and/or muscles in addition to isolated fat pockets in the stomach. Only you and an expert plastic surgeon can make the decision as to whether the procedure is right for you, however.
If you would like to improve the appearance of your stomach, but are mostly concerned about unwanted fat, you don’t have to go for a full tummy tuck to get the results you’re looking for. There are many gentle fat loss procedures you may want to consider, including mesotherapy (injectable treatments that dissolve fat) or laser liposuction. It’s worth considering all the options before you make a decision.
Plan Your Procedure
If you’re ready to look great in a bikini again, then it’s worth speaking to an expert about your hopes and goals. There are many options available, and only a board certified plastic surgeon can guide you in the direction that is right for you. Before you move forward, you will need to have your candidacy assessed, and choose a plastic surgeon you can trust completely.
At Masri Clinic for Laser and Cosmetic Surgery, we offer the best in patient care, and our experienced surgeons each boast over 25 years of experience. If you would like to explore your options with us, call 866-487-3223 today to schedule a complimentary consultation with our experts today.