Sudden weight loss and pregnancy can influence the physical body, especially the stomach. Therefore, it becomes very difficult to lose fat as the stomach stores most of the fat in the body. If diet and exercise are not working to reduce the excess skin in the abdomen, you can opt for a tummy tuck.
What is tummy tuck?
Tummy tuck or abdominoplasty refers to a cosmetic procedure used to eliminate the excess fat in the stomach surgically, giving a flat and firm shape to the abdomen. Abdominoplasty also tightens the muscles of the abdominal wall. In simple words, you can get a well-shaped body without doing any physical exercise or following a proper diet.
Reasons for which people opt for a tummy tuck are:
- Flabs in the abdomen which do not go away with exercise
- After pregnancy or extreme weight loss, as the shape of the abdomen changes
- Changes due to aging
- C-section during birth
- Weak abdomen muscles
- People feel unattractive while showing off their belly
How abdominoplasty is done?
During the surgery, you will be given anesthesia so that you remain unconscious throughout the process. The surgery may take anywhere between 1 – 5 hours.
There are two methods of abdominoplasty:
- Complete abdominoplasty
Under this procedure, the doctor will make a large incision from one side of the hipbone to another. Another incision will be made to move your belly button and sculpt the surrounding tissues and muscles.
After this, liposuction will be used to remove the excess fat and the skin will be stitched well. All this will be done while your body remains numb with local anaesthesia.
- Partial abdominoplasty
This procedure is recommended for people who have fat deposits below the navel. The surgeon will make a large incision across the lower tummy, however, in this procedure, your belly button will remain intact. Further, the surgeon will separate the skin from the abdomen wall and remove the excess fat. The process takes around two hours.
Another type of tummy tuck, called High Lateral Tension Abdominoplasty is the latest in the process. Under this method, a skilled plastic surgeon will tighten your abdomen muscles both vertically and horizontally, thus, giving you a flat abdomen and waistline.
Preparing before the surgery
Before making any decisions, you must reach out to a board-certified plastic surgeon. Your doctor will recommend you to follow the below-mentioned steps:
- Avoid smoking and using recreational drugs.
- Get your blood tests done, as asked by your doctor.
- Avoid taking any medications not advised by your doctor or anti-inflammatory drugs which can increase bleeding during surgery.
- Stabilize your body weight.
Complications after tummy tuck surgery
Tummy tuck surgery involves risks and complications like you can suffer from pain and swelling for days after the surgery. In rare cases, you can suffer from infections, blood clots, and bleeding under the skin flab. However, these complications do not usually happen if a skilled plastic surgeon performs the surgery.
Abdominoplasty also leaves scars that will never go away completely. But your doctor can advise you to apply some ointments so that, the scars can fade away a little.
Taking care of yourself post-surgery
Whether you have undergone a partial or full abdominoplasty, you must take care of the area which will remain stitched for a few days. You will be able to experience the results of the procedure in a few weeks. Follow what your surgeon tells you to do to care for the plastic bandage which will promote healing. Other things you must follow for a proper recovery are:
- Do not do any physical exercise or weight-lifting after the surgery.
- Make sure you take a few days off from work after the surgery.
- Women should have help around the house to take care of the children.
- Avoid smoking and drinking alcohol for at least 2 weeks post-surgery.
- You should eat healthy and nutritious food as tummy tuck will not help you in weight loss. Lack of physical activity, a healthy lifestyle and a proper diet can accumulate the fat in your abdomen again.
- Sit or lie down in comfortable positions, as advised by your doctor.
- Return to your daily routine only when you feel fully recovered.
You must be aware of a few myths related to abdominoplasty. The tummy tuck procedure cannot change your body type completely. It will just make your tummy look flat and toned. Tummy tuck cannot make the body of women look similar to what it was before pregnancy. However, it will make their body look proportionate with no excess fat or skin.