Mommy makeover

Short summary

  • addresses the consequences of pregnancy and childbirth
  • breast lift and augmentation for renewed firmness, contour and volume
  • tummy tuck for tighter silhouette
  • liposuction to remove stubborn areas of fat
  • a safe combination decreases downtime and costs
  • wait until you are finished with childbearing

What is a ‘mommy makeover’?

A mommy makeover is a lay term for a number of different cosmetic procedures, often performed together, to address the effects of pregnancy and childbirth. While the operations are customized to the patient’s exact needs, a mommy makeover most commonly involves some form of breast surgery and body contouring with an abdominoplasty and or liposuction.

How the body changes after childbearing?

One of the most common issues after pregnancy and breastfeeding is a change in the breasts, which tend to lose volume and/or droop. Another issue after having children is loosening of the abdominal muscles and skin. This results in decreased tone, skin sagging and stretch marks. The muscles can stretch and separate along the center of the abdomen (diastasis). In addition to weight gain, shape changes and deposition of stubborn fat on thighs or buttocks can be particularly problematic. Some women want to get rid off indented scar after C–section.

Each woman’s body will experience different effects after pregnancy. The extent of changes depends on genetic predisposition, skin elasticity, number of pregnancies, age and other factors. Hormonal changes associated with pregnancy can changes the body’s metabolism and the ability to lose weight and tone the muscles. Even the most body-conscious mammas may have a hard time to regain their figure. There are things that will improve spontaneously and others that will not. Dieting and physical activity will not lift your breast or make them fuller again, repair stretch marks or drooping skin, or repair separated abdominal muscles. Unfortunately, there is also no cream or exercise to improve the tone or elasticity of the skin.

How can effects of pregnancy be corrected?

Most commonly performed procedures for restoring and improving the pre-pregnancy breasts are: breast lift (mastopexy) and breast augmentation (augmentation mastoplasty) that can be combined as augmentation mastopexy. As the result breast will be positioned higher, have renewed firmness, contour and volume. An abdominoplasty (tummy tuck) creates a firmer and flatter abdomen and slimmer and tighter silhouette with reduced abdominal laxity. It is a two layer technique that tightens the underlying muscles and the overlying loose skin. It may also include liposuction to remove excess fat deposits in stubborn areas. Some patients may choose a lower body lift, which tightens sagging skin around the thighs, hips and buttocks. Not often caused by pregnancy or childbirth itself, women might decide to reduce the oversized labia minora (labiaplasty) at the same time.

For each individual, a combination of procedures is chosen, based on detailed pre-operative analysis, taking into account patients concerns and wishes.

Please follow the links to learn more about each of these procedures.

What are the benefits and drawbacks of combined procedures?

With advanced surgical and anesthesiological techniques and by following stringent quality guidelines, it is possible to combine procedures and carry them out in one session, maintaining the highest level of patient safety. The advantages are a decrease in down time as recovery is combined and shortened. The cost is significantly less than two operations done on separate days as the procedures are combined under a single anesthetic and operating room charge. On the other hand, the length of time a patient is under anesthesia correlates with the rate of complications. By and large, if the procedure is done in less than three hours, the risk does not increase notably. This should be taken in account when assessing the possible risks for patients who are not completely healthy or elderly patients, who may not tolerate longer procedures as well.

When is the best time to have a ‘mommy makeover’?

Many changes following pregnancy improve with time. You should get into shape, eat healthy, exercise, get back to your pre-pregnancy weight, and see how your body responds. You should wait with the surgery for a least a year after the birth of your last child. It is important to recruit help around the house in the early postoperative period, since strenuous activities and lifting your babies should be avoided for at least couple of weeks after the procedure.