An abdominoplasty, or tummy tuck, is an operation that tightens excess skin and underlying tissue in the abdominal area to create a flat, firm abdomen. This excess skin is often caused by pregnancy, weight loss, or aging. When planning for your tummy tuck, there are several things you can do to prepare your body for the best outcome.
Tobacco smoke can cause many complications with healing, and it is best to avoid smoking for at least two weeks before and four weeks after the tummy tuck. If you need to stop smoking, your doctor may advise using nicotine patches and gum.
A balanced diet with abundant vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, proteins, and essential fatty acids will help your body heal quickly. Mainly focus on vitamins A, C, and E for healthy scar tissue. You can also get minerals and vitamins from drinking plenty of water and eating healthy fresh fruits and vegetables.
Since the procedure is to tighten the skin, exercise is essential to help you lose weight, and you should develop a routine to follow before and after your surgery. Routine exercise such as walking, swimming, or cycling can help prevent excess skin from redistributing in your abdomen after surgery. Your exercise routine should include abdominal and strengthening exercises to achieve a flat belly, firm muscles, and a good posture.
Drinking water will help you flush out toxins and reduce the risk of infection. Losing weight can dehydrate the body, so water is essential when trying to lose weight. You should drink at least ten 8oz glasses of water a day.
Aspirin and other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) slow down healing, so it is best to avoid taking these medications unless instructed otherwise by your doctor. If you need pain relief, you can take acetaminophen and your doctor will prescribe you stronger medication.
Tummy tuck surgery will leave scars on your abdomen. You can minimize the appearance of scars by wearing specially designed body-shaping underwear, which is made to compress the tummy and give a smoother appearance when wearing clothes that fit closely. You can buy these undergarments at underwear specialty shops, or your doctor may recommend you wear them after surgery.
The results of tummy tuck surgery take time to develop, so be patient with yourself as you recover. The first few weeks and months following abdominoplasty will require you to focus on the healing process and allow your body time to adapt. When the scars have healed, your body will be in the best condition possible for trying to achieve your desired weight.
Abdominoplasty is a standard procedure that can help you achieve a flat, firm abdomen and remove excess skin and fat. Having realistic expectations of the procedure will ensure you are satisfied with your results. By preparing yourself before surgery, you can ensure a smoother recovery. Your body will take time to heal, but with patience and time, it will be in the best shape possible to achieve your ideal weight and appearance.
Dr. Lorraine Golosow is an experienced plastic surgeon who can help you decide if you are a good candidate for tummy tuck surgery. To schedule a consultation to discuss your plans for a tummy tuck, fill out our online form or call one of our two offices located in Cape Coral and Fort Myers, FL.