MOMMY MAKEOVER

Mommy makeover is an umbrella term for a combination of plastic surgery procedures that can help restore your pre-baby body after dramatic changes brought on by pregnancy, childbirth, and breastfeeding.

One of the biggest benefits of a mommy makeover is that it combines several procedures in a single surgical session. It’s customized to fit each patient’s unique needs but typically involves these surgical procedures:

A tummy tuck, sometimes paired with diastasis recti repair, to tighten the belly and repair separated muscles. Breast augmentation, with or without a breast lift, to raise saggy breasts or replace lost fullness. (Some women choose to have breast reduction instead.) Liposuction to remove excess fat and recontour the body.

Procedure

Your procedure may be performed in a hospital, an independent surgical facility, or an office-based surgical suite (which should be appropriately accredited). If it’s not done in a hospital, make sure your board-certified plastic surgeon has hospital privileges, so you can get emergency care quickly in the rare event that something goes wrong. Once you’re prepared for surgery, your doctor and medical team will follow the surgical plan you agreed on. You’ll be under general anesthesia (completely asleep and intubated) until it’s all over. During a breast lift with augmentation, your surgeon lifts and reshapes breast tissue, removing extra skin and often repositioning the nipple so it sits higher on the breast.

Breast augmentation is usually done by inserting silicone implants over the breast muscle. But if you’re looking for a relatively small increase in breast volume and don’t need a lift, your surgeon could do a fat transfer, taking fat from other areas of the body (such as the belly or thighs) via liposuction and injecting it into your breasts.

To perform a tummy tuck, your surgeon makes a low, hip-to-hip incision, pulls back the skin and underlying abdominal tissue, repairs and tightens your ab muscles, and removes excess skin and tissue. They may also repair a hernia or diastasis recti before closing the incision.

For liposuction, the surgeon inserts a thin, hollow tube called a cannula through small incisions to suction out excess fat. Some types of energy-assisted liposuction also tighten skin, which helps prevent laxity and sagging once the fat is removed.

A surgeon who specializes in vaginal rejuvenation can tighten the entrance to the vagina with a perineoplasty and the vaginal canal and floor with a vaginoplasty.

Recovery

Recovery time after a mommy makeover depends on what you had done, but it’s safe to assume that you’ll need at least two weeks off work—up to six weeks, if your job is highly physical or involves heavy lifting. You’ll be able to engage in light daily activity during the initial two-week recovery period, with no exercise at all for three weeks and no intense exercise for six weeks. You’ll also need to avoid any heavy lifting.

Swelling and bruising will start to subside in one to three weeks, and you’ll see your final results within six months, when you’re done healing. Scars will continue to fade for 6-12 months after surgery.