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Once you’ve had a baby, your life changes forever. You may have expected some of those changes — little sleep, extra emotions, and the feeling that your heart is living outside your body wrapped in a baby onesie.
However, you may have been less prepared for the physical changes that last long after you heal from the birthing process. Stretch marks, a sagging belly and breasts, and your feet might even be a different size!
It may not be possible to fully reclaim your pre-baby body, but you can take some steps toward improving your appearance and regaining your confidence. Plastic surgery can be a great option for some moms, as long as you ask the right questions and find the right surgeon.
How do you go about choosing the right plastic surgeon so you can reclaim your pre-baby tightness and confidence? Here’s what you need to know.
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If you’re thinking about plastic surgery, the first question to answer is, “What do I want to change?”
A ‘mommy makeover’ can address a wide range of plastic surgery options. The most common address the breasts, stomach, and thighs.
For example, you might look at a breast lift or augmentation. After breastfeeding, your breasts might be saggy or less full. Augmentation adds implants to improve their size and shape, while a breast lift removes excess skin and tightens the surrounding tissue to support your breasts more effectively.
Many women are concerned about their saggy stomachs after having a baby. A tummy tuck or liposuction can address these concerns. A tummy tuck creates a smoother, firmer stomach profile by removing excess skin and fat and tightening the underlying muscles. Liposuction removes pockets of fat that stubbornly stick around despite your best efforts.
Beyond these options, you may also consider a facelift, buttock augmentation, or other treatments to firm and smooth your skin and regain your youthful profile.
In making these decisions, think about what parts of your appearance bother you the most. It’s unlikely that you’ll be able to (or want to!) get all of these procedures. Instead, focus on the ones that will have the most impact on your confidence. Also, be sure you have realistic expectations — you’re not likely to look like a supermodel when you’re done, which is fine, because what’s important is looking like you!
Next, think about who your provider should be. There are a lot of factors to consider, so don’t be shy about meeting with multiple surgeons to determine who meets your criteria and who you feel the most comfortable with.
In the U.S., the surgeon should be board-certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS). Don’t just take their word that they are certified — ask if they are board-certified by the ABPS specifically.
Next, be sure to ask about their experience, especially with the procedures you’re focused on. Ask to see case studies and look for reviews to ensure patients are satisfied with their results. If they offer a new approach or technology, ask for proof that it’s safe and effective.
Ensure that the surgeon does the procedure at an accredited medical center. Many office-based surgical facilities are not accredited, which means they may not be as safe. Also, make sure the surgeon has hospital privileges in an accredited hospital for the procedure you’re getting. Hospital privileges involve an extensive review of the doctor’s training and competency.
During your consultation, pay attention to how thorough the doctor is in asking about your medical history and existing medical conditions. You should not feel rushed, and the surgeon should take plenty of time to answer your questions. Do you feel a good rapport with the doctor? Even an experienced surgeon may not be the right fit for you, specifically.
Finally, ask about follow-up care and costs. Cosmetic plastic surgery is generally not covered by health insurance, so you’ll want to plan for the expense and ensure that the surgeon is within a reasonable range. Also, make sure the doctor is clear about how follow-up care and revisions are handled so you know what to expect.
Because health insurance generally doesn’t cover cosmetic surgery, you’ll want to take some time to plan for the cost of the procedure.
Being able to look great without breaking the bank is challenging, but there are a variety of strategies you can use to save up the money. Careful budgeting can allow you to earmark a certain amount of money each month toward the surgery fund, for example. Consider reducing your other spending or shopping at low-cost stores while you’re trying to reach your goal.
You also want to compare prices, both in your daily budget and in terms of the plastic surgery. While cost is not the only reason you choose a surgeon, if you’re confident about the credentials of a particular doctor and they cost less, it may be a good idea to choose them over another option.
If you do decide to use debt, such as a credit card, be sure you do so responsibly. You should know the interest rate of the card, and if possible, choose a card with a lower interest rate. Consider using a card that offers rewards since you’re going to spend a considerable amount, but be careful about applying for too many cards since that can damage your credit.
Every body is beautiful in its own unique way, but we understand if you want to take steps to regain your pre-baby firmness.
Post-pregnancy fitness is an important part of reclaiming your confidence in your looks, from kegels to abdominal workouts to low-impact cardio. However, plastic surgery can give you much quicker results as long as you have realistic expectations.
The tips above are a great place to start when it comes to choosing the right plastic surgery procedures and surgeon for your needs. You’ll look and feel great once you are properly healed, and it will be easier than ever to enjoy every moment with your bundle of joy!