Pregnancy, childbirth, and motherhood are times of blessing and joy for most women. While fortunate women can occasionally escape the physical alterations pregnancy causes, the truth is that the majority of women experience stretched skin, fat deposits, and weight gains in unflattering patterns. It is important that you realize that these unsightly changes are typical and normal.
We have several thoughts on these bodily changes most women find problematic. First, follow your OB’s instructions regarding post-partum exercise and diet. Second, do not even consider plastic surgery as an option for at least six months after the birth of your last (planned) child. Third, many undesirable bodily changes can respond to a focused plan of diet regulation and exercise (including cardio fat burning, sit-ups, crunches, weight training, etc.). If you have followed these three guidelines and its been over 6-12 months since your last child was born and you are still are frustrated by your body shape, come and talk to us.
The typical problems young moms come into the office with are relaxed (saggy) or atrophied breasts, stretched or redundant tummy skin, or unrelenting fatty collections on the tummy, hips or thighs. The hormone changes during pregnancy, weight fluctuations, and gravitational tugging all contribute to these unsightly body changes.
While we can’t return you to the svelte body of the 22 year old cheerleader (pre-kids) that you may have been, we certainly can reverse the negative changes that you find yourself confronted with. We want you to at least be able to TRY to get into an attractive outfit or bathing suit that, right now, you would feel awkward even dreaming about.
Breasts can be altered by tightening (a breast lift – or mastopexy), enlarging ( a breast implant – or Augmentation) or some combination of the two, if needed. These are low impact operations, performed outpatient ( go home the same day) and typically require 2-3 weeks of light activity to recover from. We usually can return you to a youthful breast shape with minimal scarring and little discomfort.
Tummy and body reshaping after childbirth can be achieved using tummy tucks ( also called Abdominoplasty) along with fat removal ( liposuction). The typical improvement of your stretched or bloated tummy tissue with a tummy tuck can yield a nice, smooth abdominal contour that 12 months in the gym with a personal trainer could never attain. A woman’s stomach (“six pack”) muscles frequently pull outward during pregnancy and can be tightened and repositioned to restore a truly “flat” abdomen. Additionally, the fat bulges of the tummy or hips or thighs that never went away after that 55 lb pregnancy weight gain can be easily sculpted away with liposuction done at the time of the tummy tuck. Theses procedures can take a little longer to perform and therefore to recover from ( 3-4 weeks) than breast procedures due to the way you use your abdomen for so many activities during the day.
60-70% of our patients decide to do BOTH a breast lift and a tummy tuck during the same operation mainly because they need help in both areas, but also because they realize they want one operation to correct all their bodily damage, and therefore only one recovery time.
In summary, our Mommy Makeover patients are delighted to learn that there are answers to their unexpected bodily changes after childbirth and that there is hope to be able to look at your figure in the bathroom mirror and not cringe anymore. Dr. Woods is an expert at guiding you along this path and helping you decide on what plastic surgery procedure would be best for you individually. He will also show you photos of his patients who have had these procedures to assist you in the decision making process.