Pregnancy, aging, or significant weight loss can all lead to unpleasant changes in the abdominal area. Many men and women suffer from excess loose skin and stubborn pockets of fat that may make it harder to wear certain items of clothing. In extreme cases, affected individuals may feel self-conscious while at the pool or the beach. A tummy tuck – also referred to as abdominoplasty – is a cosmetic surgery that removes excess fat and skin from the tummy area to reveal a firmer and flatter abdominal contour.
Is a tummy tuck worth the money and effort?
Many individuals who have aesthetic concerns in the abdominal area debate on the pros and cons of having a tummy tuck. While the benefits are clear, there are also drawbacks to undergoing this treatment. Attending a tummy tuck consultation may be an excellent first step to getting all the information you need.
In this post, we are going to look at the reasons why you may want to have a tummy tuck, as well as some of the other facts that you should take into consideration in order to answer this question.
Why have a tummy tuck?
Abdominoplasty is a highly individualized procedure. As a result, different people choose to undergo this cosmetic surgery for varying reasons.
- Tighten weakened muscles – diastasis recti is the partial or total separation of the ‘six-pack’ abdominal muscles. This condition typically occurs when the underlying muscles have been over-stretched and damaged, usually due to pregnancy. Plastic surgeons perform abdominoplasty to join and strengthen these muscles to result in a firmer and flatter abdominal contour.
- Remove excess skin – excess skin in the abdominal area may result from pregnancy, weight fluctuations, or aging. These folds may be unresponsive to exercise, diet, and other lifestyle interventions. If this is the case, cosmetic surgery is usually the only choice to correct this aesthetic concern. During a tummy tuck, plastic surgeons will tighten abdominal skin to reveal a smoother and youthful contour.
- Remove excess fat – stubborn fat in the abdominal area is a common aesthetic concern among both male and female patients. Plastic surgeons usually use liposuction to get rid of this unwanted fat while leaving the surrounding blood vessels and lymph intact. Removal of fatty deposits is one of the key tasks during tummy tuck surgery.
- Remove past scars – an important bonus of abdominoplasty surgery is that it is able to eliminate the appearance of existing scars from the midsection. Female patients in Baton Rouge who have had a hysterectomy or c-section scars may choose to have a tummy tuck for this very reason.
- Increase self-confidence – excess skin and fat in the belly can leave you feeling embarrassed, particularly when you are in a pool or at the beach. This could cause your self-esteem levels to plummet and make it impossible for you to wear certain clothing. During a tummy tuck, plastic surgeons focus on alleviating nagging aesthetic concerns in the abdominal area, revealing an attractive, firm, and flat belly contour. This can drastically improve your sense of self-image and increase your confidence.
- Correct medical issues – outside of aesthetic reasons, a tummy tuck may also be performed for medical reasons. These include improving or correcting urinary incontinence, posture problems, and ventral hernias.
Considerations before having a tummy tuck
To determine whether a tummy tuck is worth it for you, you need to look at the benefits as well as the ‘difficult’ choices. Keep in mind also that non-surgical alternatives are available for individuals who are not exactly keen on having a surgical procedure.
Below are some important tummy tuck considerations that will help you make an informed choice.
– Insurance coverage
Health insurance typically does not pay for elective cosmetic procedures such as a tummy tuck. For this reason, you may need to pay for the procedure out of pocket. Keep in mind though that some insurers will readily pay for abdominoplasty that is required to improve medical conditions such as ventral hernias, posture problems, and urinary incontinence.
– Surgical scars
Just like any other surgical procedure, a tummy tuck results in scarring that can last for months on end. The key for patients is to work with a seasoned plastic surgeon who keeps scars minimal and conceals them where they are least noticeable. Most top plastic surgeons in Baton Rouge will also enroll you in a scar management program to make sure that your abdominoplasty scars fade well with time.
– Procedure recovery and downtime
Tummy tuck is an invasive surgical procedure that has a significant downtime and recovery period. In addition to preparing for this treatment, you’ll need to set time off (at least 2 weeks) for recovery. It may take up to 8 weeks before you are able to engage in exercise or participate in manually demanding tasks. More so, the benefits of your tummy tuck will not be immediately noticeable. Residual healing can take as long as six months.
Abdominoplasty is one of the most common surgical procedures in the United States. In 2020, there were more than 97,000 of these procedures completed in the US, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS). 95% of individuals who had this treatment said that it was worth it on the review platform Real Self. A similar 95% of patients on Real Patient Ratings said that they were satisfied with the outcome of the treatment.