[vc_single_image image=”4374″ img_size=”large”] Pregnancy and childbirth have the tendency to leave a woman feeling less attractive. While a child can bring happiness into the life of the mother, the aesthetic side effects of pregnancy and childbirth are so immense that many women experience a drop in their self-esteem after childbirth. Pregnancy and childbirth lead to extra, sagging skin in the abdomen and other parts of the body. These changes after childbirth make many women emotionally and psychologically fragile. One of the modern fixes for the pregnancy-induced aesthetic changes is the tummy tuck, which is a plastic surgery procedure that effectively addresses the unappealing physical effects of childbirth. While exercise and diet can help you lose weight, it cannot help you get rid of the surplus, drooping skin in your tummy. The only effective and quick way to restore your pre-pregnancy shape is through the tummy tuck surgery. Also known as abdominoplasty, the tummy tuck surgery helps restore your pre-pregnancy abdomen by removing the extra, sagging skin from your tummy. The procedure also involves the removal of the extra fat and tissue from the abdomen in addition to repairing the abdominal wall muscle. The tummy tuck procedure will provide you a firmer, flatter and slimmer abdomen and waistline that will beautifully complement your overall physical shape. Realistic expectations It is very important for the tummy tuck patient to have realistic expectations from the surgery. If you are thinking of going under the knife to get rid of the post-pregnancy sagging skin in your abdomen, the tummy tuck surgery can help you achieve that. You should discuss all your options with your surgeon before deciding to go under the knife. It is important to completely understand what the surgery involves, so you may be able to properly prepare for it. Discussing the risks and complications of the tummy tuck surgery with your surgeon is also key to a successful recovery and satisfactory result. You can expect the tummy tuck procedure to flatten and slim down your abdomen by removing the extra skin and fat from the tummy, and by repairing the abdominal wall muscles that might have been damaged as a result of the pregnancy-induced stretch. The removal of the surplus skin can also eliminate the stretch marks somewhat. However, you should still keep in mind that the tummy tuck is not a weight loss method. While the surgery will provide you with a tighter and firmer abdomen, it will not get you rid of all the fat cells from your tummy. That can only be done through a liposuction. If you are obese, you must try to lose some weight before undergoing the tummy tuck procedure. In addition, the tummy tuck surgery can help you appear younger than your age by contouring your abdomen, but it is by no means exempted from the aging process. As a result, aging can have negative effects on the results of tummy tuck. If you are adamant about maintaining your new appearance over the long haul, you may need to undergo some minor touch-up treatments down the road. There is also no guarantee that the tummy tuck surgery will deliver you your pre-pregnancy tummy in its entirety. Even though the procedure can help you achieve a good shape, there is a chance that you may not like the end results. It is, therefore, very important to have realistic expectations from the tummy tuck surgery. Tummy tuck candidacy In order to be a good candidate for the tummy tuck surgery, you must meet certain eligibility criteria. The plastic surgeon will assess your overall health before giving you the green light for tummy tuck. Aside from that, your lifestyle, existing aesthetic condition, overall heath and aesthetic goals play large roles in determining your candidacy for the tummy tuck surgery. If you have shed substantial weight after childbirth, and want to get rid of the resulting loose, saggy skin in the abdomen, you may also qualify for the tummy tuck surgery. Another requirement is that you must be at least 18 years old. Moreover, you should not be suffering from any serious illness like diabetes or heart diseases because it can be life threatening. Being in stable emotional and psychological health are just as important. In addition, if you are planning to have more children, you will be discouraged from the tummy tuck since it will only reverse the effects later on. If you are a smoker, you will be required to stop smoking. Lastly, having realistic goals and expectations are also important to qualify for the surgery. When to avoid the tummy tuck If your reason for considering the tummy tuck surgery is to lose weight, then don’t. The tummy tuck surgery is not a weight loss method. While the procedure will not help you lose weight, you will still have an improved appearance afterwards. However, weight gain after the surgery will negatively affect the results. This might make you think that weight loss after the surgery will help, but on the contrary, this will also hamper the results of tummy tuck. Furthermore, if you plan to have more children, you should postpone your tummy tuck procedure until your family is complete. As for those who suffer from health issues, the tummy tuck surgery can be life threatening for people who have diabetes, autoimmune disorders, high blood pressure, etc. Tummy tuck options There are two types of tummy tuck procedures: the full tummy tuck and mini tummy tuck. Let’s take a closer look at both options. Full tummy tuck: Under the full tummy tuck procedure, the plastic surgeon will make an incision from one hipbone to the other. He or she will then fold the skin and tissue as required and remove the surplus. The surgeon will also repair the abdominal muscles if they have been damaged or stretched as a result of pregnancy. The full tummy tuck involves repositioning your belly button. Afterwards, the surgeon will leave a cannula under the skin at the surgical area to drain away fluids that may accumulate there. Mini tummy tuck: If you have extra skin under the navel, you will qualify for the mini tummy tuck procedure. This intervention does not necessarily involve repositioning or recreating your belly button. The mini tummy tuck can be completed within 1-2 hours. Nevertheless, depending on your aesthetic expectations and imperfections, it may take more or less time. Risks and potential complications In the days following the tummy tuck surgery, you may experience some degree of pain and discomfort. Some patients may experience unbearable pain, while others may not experience any pain at all. Your surgeon may prescribe you pain relief medications to take for the first few days. Aside from the pain and discomfort, there are a number of risks and potential complications associated with the tummy tuck procedure. Some of the common complications include seroma, infection, excessive bleeding and blood clot formation. Patients who suffer from serious diseases and withhold this information from the surgeon before the surgery will suffer from life threatening conditions. Furthermore, if you are a smoker, you will be more at risk to potential complications because smoking negatively affects the healing process. Post-surgery care Post-operation care is very crucial to achieve better aesthetic results and minimize the risk of complications after the tummy tuck surgery. It is of utmost importance for you to strictly follow your surgeon’s instructions for a smooth recovery. You must keep the surgical area clean during the recovery period because even a little carelessness can trigger big health complications. Your surgeon will instruct you to avoid laying or sleeping on your abdomen for at least two weeks after the surgery. You will be required to avoid any high endurance activities, such as playing sports, working out and running for at least 6 weeks. Even though technically you may go back to work 10 to 14 days after the surgery, you should take more days off if your job involves strenuous activities to ensure that your recovery goes smoothly. If your surgeon has prescribed you with medication, make sure to take them on time and according to the instructions of your surgeon. Conclusion Pregnancy can leave you with sagging skin in the abdomen and damages the abdominal wall muscle. For this reason, tummy tuck is an effective plastic surgery procedure to resolve these issues as it can flatten and tighten your abdomen after childbirth. The procedure involves the removal of surplus skin from your tummy and the repairing of the damaged abdominal wall muscles. However, in order to get better results with tummy tuck, make sure to select only a Board-Certified plastic surgeon to perform the procedure. The tummy tuck procedure is not for everyone. You must meet certain eligibility criteria in order to be a good candidate for the procedure. If you are not suffering from serious health conditions, have realistic goals and expectations and have no planning of further pregnancy, you may qualify for the tummy tuck surgery. It is also important for the patient to know the risks and potential complications involved in tummy tuck and undergo the procedure only if they feel that the benefits weigh more than the risks. The tummy tuck surgery is recommended for women who have already tried to get rid of their abdominal skin through exercise and diet, but have failed. Tummy tuck is an effective solution to gain a more appealing shape, but it is not a weight loss method. Therefore, if your goal is to lose weight, you will not be qualified for the surgery.