The birth of your child is one of the most exciting moments of your life. Although children bring remarkable joy, sometimes the changes that mothers experience in their bodies can feel unwelcome. Lactation and breastfeeding provide children with essential nutrition, and that relationship is so precious. Still, the changes to your body after weaning can feel disappointing to some women.
Many mothers welcome these changes to their bodies as badges of honor and a visual reminder of their incredible motherhood journey. But for some moms, the changes to their bodies cause emotional pain, discomfort, embarrassment, and feelings of shame. In today’s modern world, there are a variety of options that can help women reclaim the bodies they had prior to childbirth, for those who desire to do so. For women who have already tried other options such as exercise, self-care, and a healthy lifestyle, another option that is available to them includes surgical procedures.
We believe all mothers’ bodies are beautiful and amazing, and we want you to feel that way, too.
At Dr. Andrews Plastic Surgery, we work with many mothers who are seeking help with their body and appearance after pregnancy and breastfeeding. We’d like to share with you some detailed information about the procedures we offer, so that you can be aware of the possibilities that exist and are available to you right here in the Iowa City corridor.
Pregnancy, as we know, stretches the skin of the abdomen significantly. Although skin has elasticity, sometimes the stretching that occurs forces our skin past its elastic limit, producing loose skin and stretch marks. In addition, it is healthy and expected that women gain weight during pregnancy. As women try to balance the care of children in the immediate postpartum period along with post-pregnancy recovery, it can become difficult to lose the weight that was gained to support a healthy pregnancy.
If your only postpartum issue is simply losing the excess fat, abdominal and waistline liposuction may be one way to give you the shape you had prior to your pregnancy. Liposuction is ideal for patients whose skin has good elasticity and tightened significantly in the months after the birth of the baby. Liposuction entails creating small puncture sites in inconspicuous areas and instillation of a fluid which numbs the tissue and adds medication to decrease bleeding. After the medication has a chance to take effect, the surgeon uses a thin tube to suction the excess fat from the targeted areas.
There is soreness associated with this procedure, but most patients can return to work in 48-72 hours. The results can be quite impactful; the procedure can dramatically change the body’s contours.
If your skin is stretched and loose after your pregnancy, liposuction alone will likely not help you achieve your aesthetic goals. In this situation, a tummy tuck, also known as an abdominoplasty, may be the best option. With an abdominoplasty, excess skin and fat are removed from the lower abdomen. Removal of the lower abdominal skin and fat produces a tighter appearance.
To accommodate the growing uterus as your baby is growing, the rectus muscle (the “six-pack” muscles) spread apart. This leaves some moms with an abdomen that can still protrude after the delivery. Some even have the appearance of continued pregnancy. A standard tummy tuck includes a technique called a rectus plication, where the plastic surgeon sews the abdominal muscles back together, making your abdomen appear flatter.
As mentioned above, many moms are left with residual fatty deposits that can be tough to reduce. Therefore, abdominoplasty is often combined with liposuction of the anterior abdomen and of the waistline. Liposuction associated with a tummy tuck will create a thin appearance. The goal of the tummy tuck is, therefore, to produce a tight, flat, and thin abdomen. A tummy tuck requires more downtime than liposuction, but can be associated with more substantial results.
Pregnancy and lactation cause breast enlargement that can be quite dramatic, but also dramatic can be the changes that occur after you are done breastfeeding. Postpartum breasts can appear stretched and deflated, often appearing smaller than they were prior to the pregnancy. Post-pregnancy breast rejuvenation can entail volume restoration with an implant. Breast implants are silicone devices that are commonly placed below the breast muscle. The implant fills the breast envelope and helps to restore breast projection.
If the breast skin is also loose and the breast sags greater than desired, a lift might also be a possibility. With a breast lift, the excess skin is removed and the nipple and areola (the colored area around the nipple) are moved to a higher position. If volume is not an issue or if you do not wish to have volume enhancement, yet you are left with a breast that is stretched and saggy, a lift may be all that is required if you seek rejuvenation. If you desire volume restoration and a lift but do not want an implant, a plastic surgeon can use your own excess fat to enhance the volume and contour of the breast.
Breast augmentation with implants is associated with a relatively quick recovery–if the procedure is done on a Friday, you can be back to work on Monday. If a lift is required, it is best to take two weeks off work to allow your incisions time to heal prior to returning to work.
Plastic Surgery in the Iowa City Corridor
At Dr. Andrews Plastic Surgery we offer a standard “mommy makeover” which is an abdominal procedure done in combination with a breast enhancement procedure. Before and after photos are available on our website if you’d like to get an idea of the type of results you can expect. Unfortunately, none of these procedures are covered by insurance. The costs depend on the procedures performed, but in general, it is more cost effective to combine procedures into one surgery if both breast and abdominal procedures are planned. Luckily, financing is available, and your plastic surgeons’ staff can discuss the options with you at the time of the consultation.
We believe that we are so lucky to live in a time where there are options available to people who feel discouraged and trapped inside a body they don’t recognize.
At Dr. Andrews Plastic Surgery, we have extensive experience with these procedures (as well as non-surgical options such as Cool Sculpting and Laser Skin Resurfacing) and would be happy to see you to discuss your personal goals.
About the Guest Blogger
Dr. Kahlil Andrews is a board-certified plastic surgeon from Los Angeles specializing in plastic, cosmetic and reconstructive surgery. He and his wife relocated to the Midwest in 2009 and are the proud parents of 3 children. With office locations in Coralville and Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Dr. Andrews’ academic and technical achievements are only exceeded by his commitment to patient care. Whether you are seeking reconstructive breast surgery, outpatient injectable treatment, or a full-blown makeover, Dr. Andrews gives his full attention and focus on achieving excellent patient outcomes.
For more information or to schedule a consultation call 319-382-8230 or visit drandrewsplasticsurgery.com.
This is a sponsored post. ICMB was compensated for sharing this piece. However, we love connecting our readers with people and organizations that are doing good in our community, and we think you will find this information helpful and informative!