Should You Get a Tummy Tuck After Giving Birth?

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When I had my first child, the baby weight came off relatively easily. It took time and effort, to be sure, but with breastfeeding, exercise and a relatively sane diet, the extra kilos around my middle slowly melted away. I felt good about myself, and I (somewhat arrogantly) went around telling others that with a little hard work and discipline, any mom can get her old shape back.

Then came baby #2.

Should you get a tummy tuck after pregnancy

My second birth was a bit more complicated in every way. When it was done, I was in no condition to go near an elliptical for weeks. What’s more, I’d put on significantly more weight than in my first pregnancy. Chalk it up to an aging metabolism plus a few extra pints (okay, maybe more than a few) of Häagen-Dazs during those nine months.

I hit the gym with a vengeance as soon as I was back on my feet, and tried diets ranging from low-carb to juice cleanses. I did begin to lose weight, but at a much slower rate than I would have liked. No matter what I did, it felt like nothing was working.

One day after slugging it out on the treadmill, I ran into a rather svelte friend of mine who has three kids.

“I don’t know how you did it,” I said, shaking my head.

“Can I let you in on a secret?” she asked. “I cheated a bit. I got a tummy tuck. After the third kid, I just didn’t want to go through the whole thing again. It wasn’t fun and I don’t tell many people, but at least it’s taken care of.”

It was a tempting thought, I have to admit, and I’m sure I’m not the only mother who thought so. A tummy tuck, or abdominoplasty, is a relatively quick way to reverse one of the lease pleasant side effects of pregnancy. And these days, when celebrity moms are prancing across tabloid covers in their perfect bikini bodies a month after giving birth, there’s an awful lot of pressure to look perfect.

There’s no right or wrong answer when it comes to this issue, but here are a few things to consider when making this decision.

It’s expensive. Admittedly, it will cost you significantly less in Thailand than it will in any Western country. Prices vary by hospital, but expect to pay a minimum of Bt122,500 for the procedure itself, plus more for follow ups.

It’s a major procedure. The name “tummy tuck” sounds cute, but abdominoplasty is a serious involving two large incisions. There’s a lot of alteration that goes on. In most cases, doctors even have to make a new belly button to make the post-up tummy look normal.

There is significant recovery time. The procedure itself takes about four hours and usually a hospital stay of two to four days. You’ll most likely need to take one to three weeks before returning to work and daily activities. You’ll also be asked to wear a protective brace for four to six weeks.

It still won’t take the place of diet and exercise. A tummy tuck is a good idea if you have stretched excess skin or specific lumps of fat that just won’t go away. It won’t make you thin, and you’ll still have to work out if you’re carrying unwanted kilos.

In the end, I decided to opt out. For me personally, a nonessential major surgery just wasn’t worth the risk. Still, my friend was very happy with the results of her surgery and does not regret her decision. The important thing is to talk to your doctor and make an educated decision.

Photo Credit: Daniel DeArco Photography via Compfight cc

Samitivej Womens Health Center

Samitivej Hospitals are world class international health care facilities located in Bangkok, Thailand.

Fully equipped with the state-of-the-art technologies, our innovative Women's Health Center at Samitivej Sukhumvit Hospital provides comprehensive gynecological and obstetrical service for women of all ages.

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