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Mommy Makeovers exist because babies are hard on their mommy’s “B’s”: Breasts and Bellies. The physiological changes that are necessary for a healthy child are not always beneficial for a healthy mommy’s body.

How to Repair the Aftermath of Pregnancy

The television video segment below is from this month’s Body Beautiful. I discuss Mommy Makeovers, the alternative to living with the results of pregnancy for both the Breast and Belly, from the perspective of a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon who has taken care of many mommies.

For the Breasts, options include: Breast Augmentation, Breast Lifts, Breast Reduction or a combination of these. Reduction of hypertrophied (overly enlarged) nipples and areolae is also possible. For Bellies: Liposuction, Mini Tummy Tucks and most commonly, Full Tummy Tucks are available. The video provides an introduction to many of the options available, including fat grafting to the buttocks (Brazilian Butt Lift), but cannot substitute for an in depth consultation with an experienced and Board Certified Plastic Surgeon.

Mommy Makeover Video from this month’s Body Beautiful on KRON 4

Breast Changes

Breast Enlargement for lactation is necessary, but when breasts shrink after breast feeding ends, the result can be empty, saggy breasts. Recent evidence points to pregnancy itself as the main culprit. Breast feeding, on the other hand, may instead offer benefits to both breast shape and baby wellness.

Why Breasts Sag With Pregnancy

Breasts are attached to the muscles behind them by long thin bands called Cooper’s Ligaments. When the breasts engorge, these ligaments elongate and cannot support the breasts as well. Immediately after breast feeding stops, the breast lose volume, which leads to further drooping. Some improvement occurs during the first six months after the cessation of lactation, so it is best to give the breasts a chance to recover, before planning your breast intervention.

Breast Enhancement

There are many options for Breast Enhancement. The most common is Breast Augmentation, which restores lost volume and can help deflated breasts. When the breast enlargement that comes with pregnancy does not resolve, and the breast remain too large, Breast Reduction may provide relief from the excess weight and size of the breasts. If the size is good, but the breasts have dropped too low, a Breast Lift may be all that is needed.

Belly Changes

What happens to the belly is a little simpler to understand. As the baby gets bigger, the belly stretches. This includes the skin and the muscle of the abdominal wall. Furthermore, the rectus muscles, which are a pair of muscles running down the middle of the belly, can separate and drift away from the midline causing abdominal weakness and diastasis.

What is Diastasis?

Diastasis is a separation of the rectus muscles. It is not a hernia and is usually not symptomatic or dangerous. A simple test for diastasis is to lay on your back, raise your shoulders off the bed/floor, and look at the center of your belly. Normally, when the shoulders rise the abdominal muscles tighten, and the abdomen flattens. With diastasis the mid-line, especially the area just above the belly button, will bulge upwards as the muscles tighten.

The bulge occurs because the muscles are no longer next to each other. As they are pulled apart with pregnancy, or weight gain, the middle of the abdominal wall is left unsupported. When the abdominal muscles tighten, the guts are squeezed and look for more room. The soft midline gives and provides additional space.

Repairing Diastasis is part of a Tummy Tuck, and one of the reasons that Abdominoplasty works better than diet and exercise for many mommies.

Abdominal Enhancement

The most common abdominal component of the Mommy Makeover is the Tummy Tuck or Abdominoplasty. This provides repair of the muscle, tightening of the skin and removal of excess lower abdominal fat. If the problem is residual fat, and the skin is tight, Liposuction, alone may be all that is needed. When there is mild skin laxity isolated to the lower abdomen, a Mini Tummy Tuck could be a good compromise.

The Mommy Makeover has Lots of Options

Hopefully, the video and post above gives you some guidance. While information above is accurate, it may be specific to your needs, because every body is a little different, and individual needs and results will vary.

The best way to find out what the Mommy Makeover can do for you is during an in-person appointment with a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon. To schedule a private consultation, call my office at (925) 943-6353, and get the details you need to decide if the Mommy Makeover is the right procedure for you.

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