Mommy makeover refers to combination of plastic surgery procedures that aim to restore a woman body to their pre baby shape after pregnancy, childbirth, and breastfeeding. Being a mom is a fulfilling experience but also not without sacrifice. Many moms lose breast volume and shape, develop looseness of their abdominal muscle, excess abdominal skin, and even significant stretch marks. These physical changes can ruin a woman’s confidence and self-esteem. Surgeries can be tailored to address these physical changes and return to moms the body that they deserve.
Common procedures involved in a mommy makeover are tummy tuck (abdominoplasty), breast lift, breast augmentation, liposuction with or without skin tightening, labiaplasty, and sometime facial surgeries such as fat transfer and neck liposuction.
Who is a Good Candidate for Mommy Makeover?
The best candidates are healthy women who are done with childbearing and have realistic expectations of surgery. Smoking however is a contraindication if breast lift or abdominoplasty are involved as historically smokers have significantly more complications. The best candidates are non-smokers, or former smokers who have quit smoking for at least one month prior to surgery. Pregnancy and breast feeding are still possible after mommy makeover however having a child after surgery may reverse some of the surgical improvements.
How is Mommy Makeover Surgery Performed?
Depending on each patient’s needs and goals, different procedures may be required. These procedures may be performed altogether or staged. Most procedures involved in mommy makeover are performed in the operating room under general anesthesia or monitored anesthesia care. Limited liposuction or labiaplasty can be performed under local anesthesia. If abdominoplasty is part of the mommy makeover, drainage tubes may be inserted under the skin for a period of several days to aid in the healing process.
What is the Recovery?
Downtime from a mommy makeover is dependent on procedures involved. However, it is often one to three weeks. During recovery time, activities will be restricted. Bruising and swelling will be greatest in the first week but should resolve in four weeks. Abdominoplasty with muscle plication (repair of the muscle separation) is a painful process and pain medication is often necessary in the first week. Combining procedures is very commonly done however it can increase risks of deep vein thrombosis or pulmonary embolism especially if abdominoplasty is part of the mommy makeover. Post-operative use of baby aspirin may reduce the risk as a blood thinner and also aid in pain-control.
Breast lift with or without augmentation and tummy tuck are most commonly known mommy makeover procedures. These are the most powerful procedures to address the excess skin and muscle laxity that moms often encounter after pregnancy. For patients who have mild excess skin, poor scarring, or who prefer a less invasive and less scar approach, skin tightening technology such as Renuvion or BodyTite can provide significant improvements with minimal scarring. However, results from minimally invasive approaches are often less dramatic and required significantly more time to show. Understanding different procedures, their pros and cons, as well as their limitations allow moms to choose the best makeover for themselves.