Many women consider having children to be one of the most important and rewarding choices of their lives. But regardless of all the joys that motherhood brings, it is common for women to experience unwelcome and lasting changes to their bodies from pregnancy that can be a source of embarrassment and adversely affect their self-esteem. Mothers are expected to do it all, and there is a common misconception that women should be able to quickly “bounce back” after childbearing with some dedicated dieting and exercise. However, what is frequently left out of the narrative is the unexpected challenge that many mothers will face, no matter how well they balance everything — getting back their pre-baby body.
Pregnancy, childbirth and breastfeeding can all take a tremendous toll on a woman’s figure, with the most apparent changes naturally-occurring to the abdomen and breasts. While diet and exercise are both key elements in maintaining a healthy lifestyle, flabby bellies, drooping breasts and stubborn baby weight are not reversible through these efforts alone. Fortunately, mommy makeovers have emerged as a package of complementary restorative procedures designed to empower mothers by explicitly addressing each of these areas of concern. Mommy makeovers are accompanied by less downtime for recovery and, subsequently, less medical costs to regain your pre-mommy figure and feel like your beautiful self once again.
What is a Mommy Makeover?
A mommy makeover refers not to an individual procedure, but rather a suite of surgical procedures that are entirely customizable to treat any of your unique post-pregnancy concerns, performed in a single surgical session. The procedures that women will commonly combine for their mommy makeovers at Newport Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Associates include:
This breast enhancement procedure uses saline or silicone implants to create additional fullness to breasts that have lost their shape and volume or that have become deflated in appearance after breastfeeding. Breast augmentation provides countless customizable options for women, allowing Dr. Seify to work with each patient to match their unique body proportions and desired results. Some of the choices you will make in preparation for your breast augmentation procedure will include:
- Implant type: Patients will choose from breast implants with silicone outer shells filled with a sterile saltwater solution known as saline or a cohesive silicone gel.
- Implant shape: You can select anatomically-shaped breast implants, also known as tear-drop shaped implants, or round-shaped breast implants, depending on your aesthetic preferences and anatomy.
- Implant texture: The outer shell of breast implants come in both textured or smooth varieties. Dr. Seify can inform you of the pros and cons of each style to determine which is best for you.
- Implant size and profile: Patients will choose the size of their implants as well as their profile, or how far the breast implants project from the chest wall.
- Implant placement: Breast implants can be placed either above or below the pectoral muscles. Where the implants are placed may be determined by your desired implant style.
- Incision placement: Incisions for breast augmentation procedures can be placed along the natural curve of the breast (inframammary), around the areola (periareolar), near the underarm (transaxillary) or through the navel (transumbilical). Incision placements are usually determined by implant type and your personal preference.
While the decision-making process for breast augmentation surgery can seem extensive and often daunting, Dr. Seify will walk you through each step of your choices to ensure that the choices you make are a good fit for you and that you are entirely comfortable with your plan.
Dr. Seify can perform breast augmentation under either general anesthesia or local anesthesia with intravenous sedation, depending on your needs. Incisions will be created in your predetermined area, and your selected implants will be inserted either above or below your chest muscles. Once your implants are correctly positioned, Dr. Seify will close the incisions and place bandages around your chest to support your new breasts.
Most women can expect to return to work or normal daily activities within one week of their breast augmentation surgery. However, women with more strenuous jobs may need more time to recover. Patients can expect multiple follow-up appointments at our office so that Dr. Seify can monitor your recovery progress and advise you when it safe to resume specific activities. Results of breast augmentation are evident right away and will be long-lasting in most cases. The FDA and breast implant manufacturers recommend replacing breast implants after 10 years.
Some mothers find that the size of the breasts isn’t the only thing altered after pregnancy. Sagging, drooping breasts can be addressed with a lift procedure that restores deflated breasts to a more youthful projection on the chest wall. The nipples and areolas may also be reduced or repositioned to create a natural, proportionate appearance. Dr. Seify may recommend a breast lift procedure alone for your mommy makeover or in conjunction with breast augmentation or reduction to produce the best possible outcomes for you and your goals.
A breast lift procedure will start with an incision placed around the areola, where any scarring will be well hidden within the pigmented area of the nipple. Depending on how much of a lift you require, a second incision may also be made vertically across the lower center of the breast. Through these incisions, Dr. Seify will remove and reposition tissue and excise excess skin to create a perkier and firmer breast shape. Breast lift patients will typically return to work after about one week of recovery.
While some mothers experience a loss of fullness to their breasts after pregnancy, others find that the changes brought on by breastfeeding have made their large breasts even more disproportionate with their figure. These women may also find that heavy, pendulous breasts cause ongoing physical discomfort to their neck and back. A breast reduction may be the right option to create breasts whose size and shape are in better balance with the overall body profile and eliminates uncomfortable physical symptoms.
Breast reduction surgery can be performed alone or in conjunction with a breast lift depending on your desired results. The incision locations are similar, and Dr. Seify can use the incision to remove excess breast tissue while restoring the perkier position of the breasts. Once the breasts have been reduced and repositioned, the incisions will be closed. Recovery time for breast reduction and breast lift are similar for both procedures so that you can enjoy full results without any extra time off work.
The breasts aren’t the only area of the body that goes through significant changes during and after pregnancy. Women that cannot achieve a flat stomach after childbearing may turn to a tummy tuck to recreate a slimmer and sleeker pre-baby midsection. During a tummy tuck, Dr. Seify will tighten the underlying abdominal muscles, remove stubborn fat deposits and eliminate excess loose skin to restore a smoother, flatter stomach.
Dr. Seify generally performs tummy tucks under general anesthesia. A horizontal incision line will be placed across the lower abdomen that extends from hip bone to hip bone. Placement of the incision will be low enough on the abdomen to hide any scarring beneath a swimsuit or underwear. This one incision allows Dr. Seify to make all the necessary corrections to the area before suturing the incision closed using a layered approach that optimizes healing and minimizes visible scarring as much as possible.
Most patients can observe positive results from their tummy tuck surgery immediately, though postoperative swelling may interfere with your final results for a few weeks. Recovery for tummy tucks generally takes about two weeks, but strenuous activities will be restricted for up to six weeks to give your body plenty of time to recover. Tummy tuck results will be long-lasting so long as you maintain a healthy weight after your procedure.
Mini Tummy Tuck
Often referred to as the limited tummy tuck, a mini tummy tuck is a procedure reserved for mothers who only have a limited amount of loose skin or stretch marks in the lower abdomen. While a traditional or full tummy tuck addresses these concerns both above and below the navel, a mini tummy tuck is limited to the area below the navel and above the pubic bone. It will usually not involve the tightening of abdominal muscles. Though it doesn’t address the full abdominal area, mini tummy tucks often boast shorter incision lines and recovery periods for patients.
For mothers who do not require a tummy tuck procedure but still wish to eliminate areas of stubborn fat, liposuction may be a less invasive option to achieve your goals. Liposuction is a procedure that can be used virtually anywhere on the body to get rid of fat deposits that will not respond to diet and exercise. However, in the case of mommy makeovers, liposuction is often combined with a tummy tuck to contour the area and smooth out problem spots in the midsection for optimal results.
Dr. Seify offers several different techniques for liposuction procedures under local or general anesthesia depending on your needs: tumescent technique, the super-wet technique, and ultrasound-assisted liposuction. In both the tumescent and super-wet methods, varying amounts of a fluid mixture of saline and a local anesthetic will be injected into your target areas to help facilitate fat removal. In ultrasound-assisted liposuction, ultrasound energy is applied to rupture and liquefy fat cells, making them easier to suction out of the body.
Recovery time after liposuction surgery can vary depending on factors such as the amount of fat removed and the technique used in your procedure. Most patients will feel comfortable returning to work or normal activities within a few days to a week of their procedure. Noticeable improvements to your figure will be apparent immediately after your surgery; however, final results will typically take several weeks or months to emerge as residual swelling gradually subsides.
High Definition Liposuction
High definition liposuction, otherwise known as VASER-assisted liposuction, uses powerful ultrasound high-frequency vibrations to break fat cells apart before removing them from the body. The technique is considered to be gentler and less invasive than traditional liposuction; however, it gives Dr. Seify a great deal more control in creating sleek and defined body contouring results. High definition liposuction not only shortens the recovery period for patients and limits side effects but also works to highlight the three-dimensional muscular anatomy for body sculpting like never before.
Smartlipo is a revolutionary new technology that has drastically increased the safety and efficacy of traditional liposuction. Using laser lipolysis, or laser-assisted liposuction, Smartlipo uses thermal energy to rupture and liquefy stubborn fat cells for easier removal from the body. The heat generated during treatment coagulates the blood vessels, meaning fewer side effects and shorter recovery times after your procedure than with traditional liposuction.
There is no limit as to what surgical procedures can be included in your mommy makeover plan. While many women wish to address only the areas of their bodies that underwent the most dramatic transformation during their pregnancy, others will use a mommy makeover as an opportune moment to address other areas of their figure they are unsatisfied with. At Newport Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Associates, Dr. Seify will make a point to carefully listen to your concerns to create a personal treatment plan that will best achieve your aesthetic goals.
Who is a Mommy Makeover For?
Due to its flexible and customizable treatment options, a mommy makeover can be an appropriate solution for a wide range of mothers with aesthetic concerns. The best candidates for mommy makeovers are women who are in good overall health, are near their goal weight and have realistic expectations as to what this procedure can do for them. If you are planning any additional pregnancies or losing a significant amount of weight, Dr. Seify will likely advise that you delay your mommy makeover procedure until you are finished with childbearing or losing weight. Pregnancy and weight fluctuations may reverse any of the improvements you achieve with a mommy makeover.
New moms must also wait to undergo a mommy makeover until they have healed fully after giving birth and are finished breastfeeding their children. Ideal candidates for mommy makeovers should also be able to take some time off of work and childcare and be able to arrange for someone to help around the house while they recover. While you will be able to return home the same day as your surgery, you should plan on taking at least two weeks to heal, depending on the procedures chosen. You can learn more about your approximate recovery time frame during your initial consultation, during which you will work with Dr. Seify to design your mommy makeover plan.
Are Mommy Makeovers Only For Mothers?
The mommy makeover procedure earned its name from the popularity of women combining these procedures after childbearing; however, you don’t have to be a mother to benefit from a mommy makeover. Many patients seek a similar combination of cosmetic procedures to address concerns related to aging or significant weight loss or gain for the benefit of a single surgical session and recovery period. Any woman who wishes to restore her breasts and abdomen, whether she has had children or not, can enjoy the rejuvenating results of a mommy makeover procedure.
Benefits of a Mommy Makeover
Mommy makeover procedures at Newport Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Associates offer women a comprehensive approach that addresses a multitude of cosmetic concerns frequently experienced after childbearing, including:
- Breasts that have changed size or shape or have taken on a deflated look after pregnancy
- Breasts that have begun to sag or droop, leading to an aged appearance
- Breasts that have become disproportionately large or pendulous after breastfeeding
- An abdomen that has developed a permanent pooch after pregnancy
- Abdominal muscles that have become stretched and lax after pregnancy (diastasis recti)
- Localized areas of fat on the body that lingers even with diet and exercise
- Stretch marks across the abdominal area after childbearing
- Loose skin caused by changes in abdominal size due to pregnancy or weight gain
Dr. Seify will take the time to understand and identify all of your concerns before your surgery so that he can devise a mommy makeover procedure tailored to your precise needs and aesthetic goals. If a mommy makeover is not the right choice for you, he will work with you to find the best procedure or combination of procedures that will make your goals a reality.
What to Expect From Your Mommy Makeover Procedure
Mommy makeovers are typically performed as an outpatient procedure, meaning you will be able to return home the same day as your surgery. The details of your specific procedure will depend on what is included in your mommy makeover surgical plan. In most cases, Dr. Seify will perform your surgery under general anesthesia, which could take up to four hours or more. Incisions will be carefully placed where any scarring will be inconspicuous and well hidden under clothing or swimwear.
What to Expect From Your Mommy Makeover Recovery
The recovery process for a mommy makeover will vary from patient to patient, depending on which procedures were performed as well as the extent of these procedures. You will be provided with postoperative instructions to help you care for your incisions and increase your comfort level throughout your recovery journey. As a mother, you may want to resume taking care of your family immediately after your surgery; however, it is essential that you rest and have someone to help you out around the house for a week or two to allow for proper healing and optimal results.
The recovery time frame for mommy makeovers is generally based on the most extensive surgery performed for your procedure. Most mothers can expect to resume normal activities or return to work after about two weeks; however, strenuous activities and heavy lifting should be avoided for about four to six weeks to prevent complications. Dr. Seify will be able to advise you throughout your recovery as to when specific activities will be safe to resume.
Your Mommy Makeover Results
As an extensive surgical procedure, a mommy makeover offers some of the most dramatic results of any plastic surgery today. However, while you will notice many visible improvements to your figure immediately following your surgery, most mothers will not see their full results for several months as residual swelling diminishes and incision lines mature and fade. Breasts, abdomen and other areas of the body targeted by your mommy makeover will be enhanced, and you will be able to enjoy the restoration of your pre-baby body for many years to come.
Schedule Your Mommy Makeover Consultation Today
Mommy makeovers offer the perfect solution to mothers hoping to address all of their post-pregnancy concerns with one surgery and one recovery period. If you are ready to reverse the toll that motherhood has taken on your figure and do something for yourself rather than your kids, board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Hisham Seify is here to help design a lasting treatment plan that gets you the body you deserve. Call the Newport Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Associates office today at 949-251-1502 to schedule your in-person consultation and learn more.
*The information about Mommy Makeover was reviewed by Dr. Hisham M. Seify. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us using our contact form below.