Should I get a tummy tuck? It’s a question our Torrance, CA, plastic surgery patients often ask when they’re in pursuit of a tighter, flatter tummy. While tummy tuck surgery certainly has what it takes to create a toned midsection, it’s not always the best approach, and it’s not right for everyone.
In this blog post, we’ll share a few pointers for determining whether you’re an ideal tummy tuck candidate, both physically and emotionally.
Make sure your concerns match up with tummy tuck indications.
You may be a candidate for a tummy tuck if you are looking to treat:
- Excess abdominal skin
- Separated abdominal muscles (diastasis recti)
Keep in mind that a tummy tuck is not a weight loss procedure but rather a complement to a healthy lifestyle.
Think about your future family plans.
While everyone’s circumstances are unique, it’s best to wait until you are finished having children to move forward with a tummy tuck. The procedure won’t affect your ability to get pregnant, but future pregnancies can alter your results and undo the work the surgery did to tighten your abdomen.
Consider whether you may be a better candidate for liposuction.
Some people in search of a flatter tummy are better suited for liposuction than a tummy tuck. If you have localized pockets of fat in your abdomen without any loose or stretched skin, lipo may be the way to go. People who have maintained a stable body weight and have not had children are the most likely to fall into this category.
If stretched skin or separated abdominal muscles are concerns for you along with excess fat, you’re likely a good candidate for a tummy tuck with added liposuction. Learn more about this and other tummy tuck techniques in this blog post.
Take note of your physical health.
A tummy tuck is an invasive surgical procedure that requires general anesthesia. You need to be in good general health to undergo it safely. That means a healthy BMI, no smoking, and no serious conditions such as bleeding disorders that may put you at risk of complications. We’ll review your health status during a pre-op appointment to make sure you can safely be cleared for surgery.
If you’re on a weight loss journey, think about how much weight you still want to lose.
It can be exciting to pursue a tummy tuck as soon as your weight loss goal comes into view, but it’s best to time the surgery near the end of your journey. Additional weight loss after a tummy tuck may lead to more loose skin on the abdomen. We recommend waiting until you are at or near your goal and your weight has been stable for a few months.
Make sure you realistically have the time to recover.
Recovery makes all the difference for tummy tuck results, and it’s important to follow all recovery guidelines to make sure you heal well and safely. You will need about 2 weeks away from desk work and as many as 6 weeks away from physically strenuous work. Make sure this timeline is doable for you so you don’t have to stress about returning to responsibilities sooner than you are ready.
Check your motivations and expectations.
Be certain that you are pursuing this tummy tuck for your own goals—not to please a partner or meet societal expectations. This is a choice you should make only to elevate your confidence in yourself. In the same vein, make sure you have a positive self-image and realistic expectations for what the surgery will achieve.
To see examples of the kind of results you can expect, please visit our tummy tuck before-and-after photo gallery.
You don’t have to decide whether a tummy tuck is right for you on your own. Our board-certified plastic surgeons are happy to discuss all your options at a private, one-on-one consult. To get started, please request a consultation online or call (310) 784-0644 . We happily welcome tummy tuck patients from throughout Torrance, Manhattan Beach, and other surrounding cities.