A mommy makeover rejuvenates all those things you love about your body, so that you can continue being the best mom and the best version of yourself. You may feel distracted and not quite 100 percent if you aren’t feeling as good about your body since pregnancy and childbirth. That’s completely understandable. Pregnancy changes your body, and the gift of your new baby doesn’t change the fact that you may want to restore some of those pre-baby characteristics.
If you’re interested in learning more in the Baltimore area, the next step is to schedule a consultation with board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Ronald Schuster. To arrange your appointment, please call us at 410-902-9800.
Read more in the sections below:
What is a Mommy Makeover?
A mommy makeover is a comprehensive approach to rejuvenating your body. The phrase itself does not refer to any one procedure. In fact, your mommy makeover could involve just a single procedure or more than one. The goal is to address the areas you’d like to renew, whether it’s your breasts, abdomen, thighs, back or a combination.
Mommy makeovers often include some combination of the following:
These procedures target areas of the body commonly changed by pregnancy and the demands of full-time parenting.
Diastasis Recti after Pregnancy
Obviously your abdomen is the main part of your body altered by pregnancy. As you carry your developing baby, the skin, tissue and muscle all stretch and expand. Once your baby is born, your tummy will shrink, but it’s unlikely to shrink back to the pre-baby baseline.
Diastasis recti is a very common condition in which the belly muscles stretch so far during pregnancy that there is a space between the left and right side of the belly muscles. About two-thirds of pregnant women experience it. It makes your belly puff out no matter how many crunches you do! In fact, abdominal exercise can make the condition more pronounced, in some cases. A tummy tuck includes repairing stretched belly muscles, so it is often an integral part of a mommy makeover.
Mommy Makeover Candidates
Pregnancy has a way of changing a woman’s body. The developing baby causes your abdomen to grow. It’s normal to gain weight, and oftentimes this weight doesn’t go away easily. You may feel like it’s really difficult to get back in shape after childbirth. Some of the most common problem areas reported by women seeking a mommy makeover are:
- Stubborn excess fat
- Sagging skin
- Stretched skin
- Deflated breasts
- Enlarged areolas
- Loss of breast firmness
- Stretched, separated abdominal muscles (diastasis recti)
Any problem area can be rejuvenated in a mommy makeover. The whole point is to tailor it to you. As part of your consultation, we’ll also discuss health-related candidacy issues, such as whether you are:
- In good general health
- Free from underlying medical conditions that could impact recovery
- Have realistic expectations of what a mommy makeover can achieve
- At or near your ideal body weight
- Interested in surgical procedures so that your results will be lasting
Most women looking to rejuvenate their physiques post-baby are good candidates for these procedures. In your consultation, Dr. Schuster will help you choose the best course of action, including whether surgical or non-surgical treatments will best meet your goals.
Choosing the Right Time for a Mommy Makeover
Feeling beautiful in your skin is really important. As parents, we have a tendency to put our children’s needs before our own, pretty much constantly. But as a parent, you need to practice self-care in order to keep being the best parent you can be. We understand that investing this kind of time in yourself may feel counter-intuitive, but you should make room for it if it’s something that’s important to you.
We’ll discuss timelines during your consultation. You’ll know what will be required in the weeks leading up to surgery, and how much time you’ll need to take off from work and/or childcare demands. Here are a few items reported by moms as being pertinent to mommy makeover timing:
- Future pregnancies may alter your results. Some women elect to put off breast procedures and body procedures till they are no longer planning for more pregnancies. The reason being that pregnancy could bring back some of those physical characteristics you sought to reverse with plastic surgery, i.e. stubborn fat, deflated breasts and stretched skin. On the other hand, some women go ahead and elect the surgery when they are ready, knowing that they may decide to have more children down the road. The choice is ultimately yours, and Dr. Schuster is here to provide clear, straightforward information so you can make that decision.
- Mommy makeovers aren’t a way to lose weight. The best results are achieved when you are already at your ideal body weight. None of these plastic surgeries are a form of weight loss. They are a means of refining and fine-tuning the contours of your physique, and removing lingering fat that doesn’t shrink in response to exercise. So, if you are overweight currently, talk to Dr. Schuster about whether you are a cosmetic surgery candidate now or whether some amount of weight loss is necessary.
- Arranging for assistance so you can focus on your recovery. You’ll need help with family obligations for at least a week or two, possibly longer. Your spouse or another trusted loved one will need to help with school pick-up and drop-off, meals, lunch prep, childcare, after-school activities, etc. You can’t be lifting, bending or running around for a certain amount of time after some of these mommy makeover procedures. You’ll also want to do nothing more than resting and walking around for a few days.
- Your body, hormones and weight must have been given time to stabilize. Your body needs time to return to its baseline, which is the soonest possible point you could undergo a procedure. Breastfeeding should be complete, and your weight and hormones must be stable.
Ultimately these are guidelines and we encourage you to arrange a consultation with Dr. Schuster if you’re thinking about a mommy makeover. Together, you can discuss how the procedure would fit into your life and the best timing for you.
Mommy Makeover Recovery
The length and nature of recovery after surgery is mostly determined by:
- The procedures included
- Whether the procedures are performed in one appointment or spaced out over time
Other general aspects of recovery include:
- Walk around your home every 3-4 hours to get your blood circulating after surgery
- Take medication prescribed to you by Dr. Schuster
- Wear compression garments as instructed by Dr. Schuster
- Return to light exercise in roughly 3-4 weeks, as cleared by Dr. Schuster
- Regain full activities after 4-8 weeks
Each procedure has its own timeline. For example, after a tummy tuck you can return to work in two weeks, and get back to your full activities in four weeks, with clearance for strenuous exercise happening around six weeks. You’ll also need to wear a girdle for six weeks. Other procedures have similar or shorter recovery timelines.
It takes a few months to see the results of most procedures, perhaps even longer. That’s because the treatment area is swollen at first. As the swelling dissipates over the weeks, the final shape is revealed. Having said that, most people notice an immediate difference after tummy tuck, breast surgery and liposuction, with continuous improvement for several months.
Choosing Dr. Schuster for Post-Baby Rejuvenation
Choose a plastic surgeon who cares about your health, well-being and the quality of your long-term results. They must also possess the skill, experience and qualifications to perform your surgery safely and effectively. Dr. Ronald Schuster has been performing plastic surgery for decades, including all procedures that are typically included in mommy makeovers. He possess all the qualities you should demand in a mommy makeover surgeon, including:
- Board certification by the American Board of Plastic Surgery
- Experience performing plastic surgery
- Experience specific to mommy makeovers
- Demonstrable results
Dr. Schuster is Chief of the Plastic Surgery Division at Northwest Hospital Center in Baltimore County. He is a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons and the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, among other memberships. Dr. Schuster was an early adopter of Ideal Implant, the only Structured Saline implant. In the past, Dr. Schuster was selected to serve as an initial clinical researcher for implementing Trilucent® breast implants. Above all, Dr. Schuster is personally committed to listening to you so that he can achieve the rejuvenation you have in mind. You deserve a plastic surgeon with compassion and understanding of the demands of parenthood and how it can affect your body. Dr. Schuster is excited to help his patients realize their rejuvenation goals.
Am I a Good Candidate for a Mommy Makeover?
Candidacy factors for a mommy makeover include:
- You are in generally good overall health
- You have realistic expectations of what these procedures can achieve
- You are ready to learn about the benefits and risks of the procedure(s)
- You have time to commit to a brief recovery period and downtime after surgery
- You have a concern or goal that a plastic surgery procedure is capable of addressing
Of course the only way to really truly know whether you are a good candidate is to meet with Dr. Schuster. He takes all the time needed to listen fully to your expectations, goals, concerns, questions, and plans. After examining the area you’d like to rejuvenate, he can determine if there is a procedure that will be a good match. He will also make sure you know all of your options, as there is oftentimes more than one possible approach.
How Long Does It Take?
The exact duration of the mommy makeover depends on the procedure or proceådures you choose to include. It could take several hours to complete the surgery itself, after which you will spend a brief time recovering under our supervision before being cleared to return home. You should plan to dedicate the entire day to the process.
How Long is the Recovery from a Mommy Makeover?
Each procedure will have its own recovery timeline, but generally the majority of downtime will take place over the several weeks following surgery. You should plan for at least 1 week off from work, roughly 4-6 weeks off from strenuous exercise, and a few months in which swelling will resolve and the final results will take shape.
What are the Benefits of a Mommy Makeover?
Each woman who visits us for a mommy makeover has unique reasons for pursuing these procedures, so that means the benefits will be somewhat unique to the individual as well. Benefits often include:
- Multiple procedures can be performed in one appointment, or at least as part of the same surgical plan
- Restore a positive self-image and experience a boost in your self-confidence
- Combat the effects of pregnancy, especially those that cannot be addressed with diet and exercise
- Be the best mom you can be by feeling good about yourself from the inside out
As a busy mom, you deserve the opportunity to focus on your cosmetic goals for once. Rejuvenating your body and breasts can provide an extra boost in the way you view yourself and the way you carry yourself, which you may find positively influences many aspects of your life.
What Are the Risks of a Mommy Makeover?
Each procedure carries the possibility of certain complications. Generally speaking, mommy makeover surgeries are safe and effective, especially when the patient has been carefully vetted for candidacy by a board-certified plastic surgeon. Possible risks include:
- Asymmetrical results
- Poor wound healing
Dr. Schuster and our team take all precautions necessary to reduce risks and ensure your safety. You can mitigate risks and side effects further by following all of the pre-operative and aftercare instructions exactly. These measures will help you heal correctly.
What is the Best Age for a Mommy Makeover?
There really isn’t a right or wrong age for a mommy makeover. If you have had one or more babies and would like to undo some of the physical changes that resulted from pregnancy and breastfeeding, then you are probably a good candidate. You may be in your 20s, 30s, 40s or beyond when you start thinking about a mommy makeover.
One thing to consider is whether you are planning for more children. It’s certainly fine to have more babies after a mommy makeover, but becoming pregnant again will most likely change the results you achieve. For that reason, some women undergo these restorative procedures only once they no longer plan for more children. That way, they won’t have to worry about weight gain, stretching, or breastfeeding altering the results.