How to Prepare Yourself for a Tummy Tuck Surgery

Tummy Tuck Surgery

In the U.S, tummy tucks are the 5th most popular plastic surgery procedure. 

Tummy tucks are fantastic for your posture, weight management, and your abdominal region. Perhaps you’ve got your procedure booked, but you’re not sure how to prepare.

Sounds familiar? Don’t worry, you’ve come to the right place. Here is how to start preparing for surgery.  

What Is Tummy Tuck Surgery?

Tummy tucks, also known as abdominoplasty surgery, flattens the abdomen by cutting away excess skin and sewing it back together again. It may also include surgically fastening the abdominal muscles, so they look and feel taut. 

Note, there are three main types. For instance, you can get a complete abdominoplasty which involves a large abdominal incision to removes an extensive amount of fat. The surgeon even creates a new belly button.

On the flip side, a partial abdominoplasty procedure involves a small incision, so less fat is removed. Lastly, a reverse tummy tuck is like the previous treatment but the loose skin is extracted from the upper part of the abdomen. 

But, it’s important to note, if you’re planning to get pregnant then wait until you’ve given birth. This is because, during the procedure, your vertical muscles are tightened so if you fall pregnant, this will separate so you’re back to square one.

How to Prepare 

You’ve got a list of tummy tuck benefits, and you’re excited about your procedure.

It’s wise to give yourself four months’ notice so you can prepare yourself mentally and physically. 

As soon as you’ve made your decision, get a medical evaluation from your physician to see whether it’s a viable option. Also, make sure you’re eating clean, drinking plenty of water, and exercising regularly. If you’re an avid smoker or drinker, then quit as these can hinder the healing process. 

You should also find a reputable, board-certified plastic surgeon with extensive experience with tummy tucks. Ask to see their before and after photos so you get insight into their work. 

Once everything has been booked, schedule leave from work and make arrangements for child care. Also, figure out post-surgery transport and care by freezing healthy meals, stocking up on pillows, and loose-fitted clothing so it’s easy to remove. And don’t forget ice packs, over-the-counter medication, and gauze pads, so you’re fully prepared. 

When you’re two weeks away from your appointment, don’t take painkillers or anti-inflammatory medication as they may cause bleeding after your surgery. Further, if you’re suffering from a cold or fever, contact your surgeon to possibly reschedule your tummy tuck. 

What to Eat Before a Tummy Tuck

Your abdominoplasty pre-surgery is crucial, and this starts with your diet. Eat plenty of vitamin C such as fresh fruit and veggies, as vitamin C speeds up the healing process.

If you can, avoid processed foods because they increase inflammation and cause a spike in your blood sugar levels. So this means less rice, pasta, and potatoes. Instead, load up on foods packed with omega-3 fatty acids like walnuts, mackerel, and salmon. 

Know the Procedure

One of the top tips for surgery preparation is to understand the procedure. First, you’ll be administered general anesthesia so you’re comfortable during the tummy tuck. 

Your surgeon will make an incision between the pubic hairline and belly button, depending on how much excess skin is to be removed. The skin from the upper abdomen is pulled down, the fat is trimmed, and the remaining flesh is sewn together. 

The skin is fastened together using adhesives or sutures so you’re left with a flat, firm abdomen. Your surgeon will dress the incisions and suggest an elastic compression garment to reduce swelling.

After the Surgery

Abdominoplasty post-surgery is just as important as preparation. First, your surgeon will teach you to care for the affected area and which medications to take. 

This is the perfect time to ask questions you’re unsure of. For instance, “when can I resume my normal exercise routine?” or “what’s the best way to bathe while I’m healing?” Don’t be embarrassed, it’s important you feel confident and comfortable with your recovery. 

There aren’t any specific dietary restrictions but start with drinking plenty of water and then graduate to soft food like yogurt. If nothing appeals, load up on protein shakes to get enough nutrients and liquids. Eventually, you can return to your regular diet of vitamin C and protein-rich foods.

Even though excess fat was removed, the remaining cells can grow depending on what you eat. So make sure you maintain a healthy lifestyle to sustain your amazing results. 

One week after the surgery, the surgeon will remove the bandages, and you’ll get a glimpse of your new waistline! Although the area will be swollen, you will notice a huge difference but you must continue to wear your compression garment. 

After eight weeks, you can return to your daily exercise and life. But if you notice any irregularities, schedule an appointment with your plastic surgeon so they can help.

That’s Everything About Preparing For Surgery

Hopefully, after reading this article, you now know everything about preparing for surgery. 

Before your surgery, make sure you eat protein-rich food, add movement to your routine, and ditch smoking. Be prepared by freezing healthy meals, getting support from your loved ones, and stock up on comfortable pillows. If you want to learn more, ask your plastic surgeon, and they will offer support. Good luck! 

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About the Author: Andrea Parker

Andrea Parker is a reporter for Zobuz. She previously worked at Huffington Post and Vanity Fair. Andrea is based in NYC and covers issues affecting her city. In addition to her severe coffee addiction, she's a Netflix enthusiast, a red wine drinker, and a voracious reader.