Pregnancy is lovely, but a woman’s body goes through many changes to get ready for childbirth. Women often find that their bodies don’t bounce back to the size and shape before they had children.
Fortunately, many effective plastic surgery procedures can help a woman get her body back to how it was before pregnancy. These procedures may be an option from six months to a year after childbirth.
A tummy tuck is a plastic surgery procedure that removes extra skin and fat from the abdomen, most often after pregnancy or significant weight loss.
During pregnancy, the abdomen expands to make room for the growing child, but the skin stretches and may not contract enough after childbirth.
The result is loose and sagging skin above or below the navel that is impossible to eliminate with diet and exercise.
Your plastic surgeon can trim away this skin and fat, as well as tighten the abdominal muscles, to give you a smooth, flat belly again.
If you have loose skin above the belly button, you may need a full tummy tuck, but loose skin below the navel may only require a mini-tummy tuck.
Note that a tummy tuck is not for everyone. Your surgeon may recommend that you wait to have this procedure if:
- You smoke
- May get pregnant in the future
- Plan to lose a lot of weight
- Have heart disease or diabetes
- Had abdominal surgery earlier that left scar tissue
- Have a BMI above 30
Also, recovery from a tummy tuck takes at least a month. You will not be able to lift anything more than five or 10 pounds for several weeks, so you may need help at home if you have small children.
The results from a tummy tuck can last for many years if you stay near your ideal weight.
After nursing, the breasts may sag or deflate, making many women self-conscious about their appearance. But a breast lift can elevate the breasts to their natural position.
Your plastic surgeon can trim away extra skin and fat to make the breasts sit higher on the chest. The surgeon also may move the nipple and areola to provide a more natural look.
According to Houston Plastic Surgeon, Dr. Ashley Steinberg, “A breast lift can dramatically change a woman’s appearance after breastfeeding and is one of the most popular procedures in my practice.”
Some women also opt for a breast augmentation that involves placing silicone or saline implants in the breasts to increase their size. If you want a more subtle size increase, your plastic surgeon can liposuction on another body area and inject the fat into the breasts.
Breast augmentation alone will not lift the breasts; breast implants will only accentuate sagging or drooping. In this situation, your surgeon will probably recommend a breast lift.
It is recommended to wait until you are done having children before you have a breast lift. If you get pregnant again, it will undo this procedure, and you will need to have it done again.
A labiaplasty is a plastic surgery procedure that shortens the labia minora, which can become longer and looser after childbirth.
It’s the most commonly performed plastic surgery on the genitals and can ease irritation and pain that women may have from the labia being tugged and twisted. Women often complain of not being able to wear tight fitting clothes, pain during intercourse, or inability to ride a bike because of pain and discomfort.
The labiaplasty can correct asymmetry if one labia minora is longer than the other or reduces its length.
The most common is the trim procedure, where excess tissue is removed, and the surgeon does stitches directly. The other option is the wedge procedure which keeps a natural border after some tissue is removed. Folds in the clitoral hood also can be reduced during this procedure.
After you are pregnant, you may decide to have one or more of the procedures outlined above. But if you want to have several procedures at once, you may choose to have a mommy makeover.
This procedure aims to improve the appearance and shape of a woman’s body after childbirth. You can have several procedures done in the same surgery to reduce the cost and have all your recovery done at once.
Each mommy makeover is different, but women often decide to have several of the following procedures:
- Breast lift
- Breast augmentation
- Tummy tuck
If you decide to have a mommy makeover, it is recommended that you be in good overall health and close to your ideal body weight. It’s also important to have realistic expectations about the procedure, and you should be done having children.
You should talk to your plastic surgeon about your goals, and they will help you decide which procedures may be best for your mommy makeover. Most women usually choose to have procedures that focus on the breasts and abdomen, including a breast lift, liposuction, and a tummy tuck.
The procedures outlined above can make dramatic differences in a woman’s body after pregnancy and childbirth. You should wait at least six months after having your last child before considering these cosmetic procedures.
Talk to your board-certified plastic surgeon today to determine if you’re a good candidate for the procedures described above.