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Being a mother can be one of the most rewarding and amazing experiences a woman can ever experience. However, nine months of pregnancy and breast feeding can cause some changes to the body that are difficult to reverse. There are a number of combinations of procedures that can remove fat from stubborn areas, flatten the tummy, and return the breasts to a more rejuvenated, youthful appearance.
Am I a good candidate for a mommy makeover?
There are a couple of factors that will give you the best results from your mommy makeover. First, have you successfully lost the weight you had planned. The reason this is important is if you continue to lose weight after the tummy tuck or breast lift, you may develop more loose skin and require follow-up procedures. Although a mommy makeover can provide tighter, and smoother skin in the breasts, abdomen, and thighs, it is not a weight loss procedure. It is in your best interest to be at a stable and healthy weight first.
Secondly, are you planning on having more children? If the answer is yes than it would be wiser to wait until you are finished having children as an additional pregnancy will reverse your results.
Thirdly, did you have a c-section during your delivery? A c-section can cause scarring, which can be corrected during a mommy makeover. Also, if you developed a hernia during pregnancy, a mommy makeover could possibly address this, as it affects the same general area.
The soonest you should do a mommy maker is at least six months after delivery. Carrying a baby for nine months and going through a delivery is traumatic and you body needs time to recover. This includes breastfeeding, as breastfeeding changes the shape of a woman’s breasts. It is important to wait until any swelling dissipates before breast procedures.
Finally, your general health is an import factor on if you are a good candidate for a mommy makeover. It is important to let Dr. Samimi know if you have a history of diabetes, heart disease, gastric bypass, MRSA, or smoking. These medical conditions can impact your ability to heal
Which procedures should I include?
A mommy makeover is an umbrella term that can include; abdominoplasty, liposuction, thigh lift, breast lift, and/or breast augmentation. Any number of combinations are possible to fit your needs.
An abdominoplasty or “tummy tuck” is a multi-step process that involves suturing the abdominal muscles tightly together again, liposuction, and removing excess skin, often through a horizontal incision along the lower abdomen. It is important to repair the abdominal muscles as this is what gives the abdomen a flatter, tighter appearance. The liposuction is often performed in the upper abdomen area, hips, and flanks, to give the waist a smaller diameter and more definition.
Liposuction surgically removes adiposities that can be deposited in areas due to genetics, or pregnancy. Liposuction can be done in any number of places. A couple of the most common areas for a mommy makeover are the hips, thighs, arms, and lateral chest. This is not intended as weight loss, but more as sculpturing the body’s curves.
Thigh lifts are utilized when there is loose skin in the inner part of the thigh. Liposuction is not enough to address laxity in the skin, and sometimes it is best to surgically remove the skin. This results in smoother skin throughout the thighs and upper knee area.
Breast lifts, with or without breast implants, is a common part of the mommy makeover as the breasts go through so much change during pregnancy. Often the nipple shifts downward, and women lose part of their breast volume during breastfeeding. Lifting the breasts up to their previous height help give the breasts a more youthful appearance. If the breasts have lost significant volume, then breast implants are a common method of restoring fullness in the upper part of the breast. There are some women that prefer not to have implants placed and if they do not want a large increase in size, then fat injections to the breasts can be an option.
What surgical techniques do you recommend?
Pregnancy affects each woman completely different. That is why we offer complementary consults with Dr. Samimi. Although Dr. Samimi performs each of these surgeries, it may be necessary to do your mommy makeover in steps due to the length of surgery and your overall recovery. Some combinations include Breast Lift with Abdominoplasty. Abdominoplasty and thigh liposuction. We do not schedule Thigh Lifts and Abdominoplasties together due to resulting discomfort during recovery.
What will my recovery be like?
The first couple weeks are when you will experience the most discomfort as your body recovers from the various surgical procedures. This is a good time to rest and allow your body to begin healing. Compression worn 24 hours a day will help reduce the swelling. Pain medications and lidocaine pain pumps, which slowly infuse lidocaine, helps mitigate pain and discomfort. We ask that you avoid lifting more than 10 lbs. for at least 2 weeks. Sleeping with your head elevated and pillows behind your knees will help keep tension off your incisions. We expect much of your swelling to dissipate at about 6 weeks, however results can take up to 6 months to a year.
How long will it take for scars to heal?
Scarring is largely dependent on a patient’s skin type. There are several ways to help reduce the redness or darkness that can result from incisions. We recommend silicone scar ointments, such as Biocornium, applied day and night, for up to a year. Also, avoid any UV sun exposure, as this can keep the scars red/dark longer. Apply sunscreen even if your scars are under clothes, as UV can penetrate most clothing. Also, microneedling can help flatten and heal incisions, but this should be done after 6 months.
Although it is uncommon, some patients develop hypertrophic scars. These are raised scars, which are not to be confused with keloid scars. Sometimes Dr. Samimi will inject Kenalog (a steroid) to help these incisions flatten.
When will I see my mommy makeover results?
The majority of swelling from mommy makeover procedures dissipates after 6 weeks. However, it can take up 6 months to a year for residual swelling to be absorbed. Also, it can take about a year for scars to fully remodel and heal. Implants can take about 4-6 months to settle into their final position. We are a society that does not like to wait and unfortunately to see results requires some patience.