Read This If You’re Considering a Mommy Makeover

A woman’s body undergoes significant (and often permanent) changes due to pregnancy and breastfeeding—and in many cases, diet and exercise alone are often unable to help it bounce back to its pre-baby state. According to Haute Beauty Expert Dr. Emerick Salas, “The most dependable way to restore a tighter tummy and youthful-looking breasts is Mommy Makeover surgery, and this combination of procedures can include a tummy tuck, breast augmentation and/or a breast lift, as well as liposuction.” But before you schedule surgery, there are a few key things to know.

mommy makeoverPhoto Credit: Shutterstock

The basics

Every Mommy Makeover is fully customized to meet a patient’s unique needs and goals, and each procedure is different. Dr. Salas explains, “Some women experience more substantial changes in the breasts, especially after breastfeeding multiple children, while others see more stretching of the abdominal skin and muscle. The beauty of the Mommy Makeover is that we can address changes in both areas in one surgical procedure.” Although each component of a patient’s Mommy Makeover is tailored to provide the level of correction necessary, all of these procedures have two things in common: Breast enhancement and a tummy tuck, which is also known as abdominoplasty.

  • Breast augmentation: Pregnancy and breastfeeding commonly lead to a loss of breast fullness and sagging, and some women are able to restore pre-baby volume and position with implants alone.
  • Breast lift: “In cases of more severe post-pregnancy sagging, it may be necessary to remove excess skin and rebuild the internal support structure to return the breasts to a more aesthetically pleasing position,” says Dr. Salas. Some women may need a breast lift in addition to breast augmentation with implants to achieve their desired results.
  • Tummy tuck: This component of the Mommy Makeover removes excess skin and tightens muscles to restore a firmer, flatter stomach. “There are a variety of tummy tuck techniques than can address mild to severe excess skin and muscle laxity. It’s important that patients understand a tummy tuck always results in a scar, but fortunately, plastic surgeons specialize in making nice thin scars. The length and shape depend on the type of tummy tuck performed, although it can usually be hidden by panties and bikini bottoms,” explains Dr. Salas.

Timing is Everything

Many women wonder how quickly they can schedule Mommy Makeover surgery after giving birth, and a few factors come into play. I advise women to wait at least six months after giving birth, but in some cases,  it may be better to wait closer to a year. If a new mom is breastfeeding, I recommend waiting at least three months after the baby is weaned. Yet one timing “rule” is for sure: It’s important for a woman to be sure that she is done having children. Additional pregnancies are bound to impact Mommy Makeover results, and she may wind up back where she started before surgery.

Tummy tuckPhoto Credit: Shutterstock

Recovery Reality

Regardless of type, all surgery comes along with some period of recovery. Breast augmentation alone is relatively easy, and generally comes along with a few days of fatigue, soreness and taking it easy. Breast lift recovery is more intense because skin is removed, tissues are repositioned and drains may be inserted to facilitate healing. The tummy tuck aspect of the Mommy Makeover requires the most recovery time, including several days of bed rest, at least two weeks of help getting around and avoiding exercise and heavy lifting for four to six weeks.

But when it comes to Mommy Makeover surgery, there’s likely a baby, toddler or young child that needs to be taken care of. It’s absolutely imperative that you have someone else to act as your child’s or children’s caretaker 24 hours a day for at least the first week after surgery. It’s also important to keep in mind that you should not pick up your baby or small children for three to six weeks after surgery, so you must make the proper arrangements.

Consider the Details

Most Mommy Makeover patients focus on the ‘big picture’ in terms of results, but the smaller details—specifically the belly button and areola—play a major role in the final outcomes. A tummy tuck requires repositioning the navel during surgery, and an unnatural appearance after surgery can tell the world (or anyone who sees your midriff) that you’ve undergone this procedure. The same goes for the areola in the case of a Mommy Makeover that includes a breast lift, since this procedure often involves repositioning and reducing the size of the nipples. When considering a Mommy Makeover, be sure to look at plenty of the surgeon’s before-and-after pictures to be sure that he or she has a track record for providing final results that appeal to you.