If you have extra skin on your abdomen, a tummy tuck is a surgical procedure that removes this excess skin and pulls your remaining skin taut. The end result is a flat stomach with no additional skin. To maintain the results from your tummy tuck, here are three things you need to do.
1. Follow Your Surgeon's Post-Surgical Instructions
It takes approximately six weeks to fully recover from a tummy tuck. Most patients are able to resume light activities within two or three weeks. It's essential that you follow your surgeon's instructions, or you risk interfering with the healing process. Putting too much strain on your incisions can even cause them to reopen.
A tummy tuck that doesn't properly heal may leave you with a large amount of scar tissue that makes your surgical incision more noticeable. This can detract from the flat appearance of your stomach, so make sure you understand your surgeon's instructions and follow them.
2. Avoid Gaining Weight
Maintaining a steady weight is one of the most important things you can do to preserve the look of your tummy tuck. When you gain weight after a tummy tuck, it increases the size of your stomach and stretches your skin back out. Depending on how much weight you gain, your stomach may not return to its flat post-surgery look, even if you lose the weight.
If you have liposuction during your tummy tuck, you can usually expect weight gain to distribute fat in other areas of your body due to the permanent decrease in the number of fat cells in your stomach. Some patients who gain excessive amounts of weight find that the gain does increase the size of their stomach.
Try to stay within five to ten pounds of your weight the day you have your tummy tuck for longlasting results. If you could become pregnant, make sure that your family is complete before deciding to have a tummy tuck as pregnancy weight gain also impacts the longevity of your tummy tuck.
3. Stay Away from Cigarettes (and Other Tobacco Products)
Tobacco products are bad for your overall health, but regular smoking can also impact how your body looks. When you smoke, this decreases your body's ability to circulate blood. Poor blood circulation makes it harder for your body to heal immediately after surgery, and it can also contribute to premature aging. Over time, the skin on your stomach will naturally lose some of its elasticity and start to droop, but smoking will hasten the process, leaving you with loose skin.
For more information about tummy tucks, consult a professional who provides this service.