What is a mommy makeover?
A “mommy makeover” is the familiar term for a personalized set of cosmetic procedures designed to help a woman address common effects of childbearing and aging on the face, breasts, and body and restore or improve upon her pre-pregnancy appearance. Mommy makeovers can include cosmetic surgery, non-surgical treatments, or a combination of both.
How can mommy makeover surgery benefit me?
Pregnancy can leave lasting—and often unwanted—effects on your appearance, such as sagging breasts, stretched abdominal muscles, and loose, excess skin. Many women are discouraged when their breasts and body do not return to their pre-pregnancy shape, even with a healthy diet and exercise. By addressing unwanted changes of pregnancy and restoring the appearance you desire, a mommy makeover can help you feel more like yourself, improving your comfort and self-confidence.
Each patient has her own personal goals with her mommy makeover surgery, which often include one or more of the following:
- Correct sagging and restore volume to breasts
- Improve breast symmetry
- Repair stretched or large nipple/areola
- Remove excess, sagging skin from the abdomen
- Repair stretched or separated abdominal muscles (diastasis recti)
- Reduce pockets of diet- and exercise-resistant fat
- Improve the way clothing and swimsuits fit
When should I have a mommy makeover?
Determining the right time for a mommy makeover is largely a personal decision between you and your cosmetic surgeon; however, there are certain factors to consider when timing a mommy makeover and choosing the procedures you will have.
- You must be fully recovered from childbirth before undergoing surgery.
- If you are considering breast surgery, you should wait until several months after you are finished breastfeeding to allow the breasts to return to a stable size and shape.
- Certain non-surgical treatments, such as injectables, may not be recommended while you are still breastfeeding.
- Typically, it is best to wait until you are finished having children before undergoing surgical “lifting” procedures, such as tummy tuck, breast lift, or lower body lift surgery; if you plan to become pregnant again in the future, non-surgical body contouring and skin treatments can be cost-effective options for interim treatments.
- If you are having a surgical mommy makeover, you will not be allowed to lift anything over 5-10 lbs. for the first few weeks after surgery; you will need help with childcare during this time, especially if you have younger children.
Choosing a cosmetic surgeon for your surgery
The most important decision you will make is who will perform your procedure(s). Because mommy makeovers typically involve multiple procedures, you will want to make sure the cosmetic surgeon you choose is not only experienced in each individual procedure you are considering, but also is experienced in performing them together. When you consult with potential cosmetic surgeons, ask how many mommy makeovers he or she has performed. Make sure you look at plenty of before and after photos, paying particular attention to patients body shapes and issues similar to yours and who had the procedures you are considering.
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Board certification and patient safety
Additionally, make sure the cosmetic surgeon you choose is board certified. Cosmetic surgeons who are certified by the American Board of Cosmetic Surgery have undergone intensive training in all aspects of cosmetic surgery and passed rigorous exams demonstrating their abilities. ABCS surgeons also operate exclusively in accredited surgical facilities and use the services of board certified anesthesiologists for surgeries requiring general anesthesia; this is essential for your safety.
What are my mommy makeover procedure options?
Because pregnancy and childbirth have a significant impact on the breasts and body, mommy makeovers tend to include breast enhancement (i.e. breast augmentation and/or breast lift) and body contouring surgery (i.e. tummy tuck and liposuction). However, your mommy makeover may include any procedures that will help you address your individual concerns. Below are common procedures women choose to have as part of a mommy makeover.
The majority of mommy makeover patients have at least one surgical procedure, often several at a time. In most cases, multiple procedures can be performed during a single operation, allowing a patient to improve multiple areas with only one surgery and recovery period.
Increasingly, women are including non-surgical treatments in their mommy makeover plans. Such treatments can be a good option for those planning to have more children as well as those who are not willing or able to take several weeks off to recover from surgery. Non-surgical treatments generally provide less dramatic results than surgery, but can still achieve significant improvements for the right patients.
- Non-surgical fat reduction
- Skin tightening treatments
- Cellulite reduction
- Non-surgical feminine rejuvenation
- Injectables: Botox & fillers
- Skin resurfacing treatments
Life after surgery
Since mommy makeovers are personalized to a patient’s needs and goals, surgery protocols and recovery times vary. A good rule of thumb is to expect a recovery similar to that required of the most extensive procedure you are having (in most cases, this is a tummy tuck). To learn more, please review the guides for cosmetic procedures you are interested in having.
Many patients have their procedures while their children are very young. Doing so allows them to get back to their desired appearance earlier, but requires careful planning with regards to childcare during recovery time. Most surgical procedures restrict lifting for 4 to 6 weeks after surgery; you will need to have someone else perform tasks that require a child to be picked up or carried while you heal.
How soon your results will be final also depends on the procedures you have. Although the time depends per patient, typically, patients feel comfortable and confident wearing a swimsuit within 3 months after surgery. Results are long-lasting and can be enjoyed for many years to follow.
When performed by a qualified cosmetic surgeon, a mommy makeover can be a rewarding procedure with long-lasting results. The best way to learn more about your makeover options is to meet with a board certified cosmetic surgeon for a consultation. Use our ABCS Find-a-Surgeon tool to find cosmetic surgeons in your area.