When Can I Get a Mommy Makeover?

Reese Witherspoon got her tiny frame back just eight weeks after having her baby. Heidi Klum did it in six months. Uma Thurman, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Angelina Jolie—all of these actresses dropped their baby weight in record time after giving birth, leaving the rest of us to wonder: How did they do it? And if they can get their bodies back in mere weeks, why can’t I?

Unfortunately, celebrities like these give many women unrealistic expectations about losing weight and getting back into shape following pregnancy. The truth is, it takes a number of months for your body to revert to its pre-pregnancy state after you give birth—and it should! Think about it: For almost a year, your body has been stretching and changing to accommodate the new life growing inside of it. You can hardly expect it to snap back to the way it was before the second you give birth. These things take time.

The catch, of course, is that even if you give your body the time it needs to recover, it won’t necessarily revert exactly back to how it was prior to pregnancy. Exercise and healthy eating does the trick for some women—but others are not so lucky. Having children (especially if you have more than one) can take a toll on your stomach, breasts, hips, and thighs, causing sagging and volume loss that exercise and dieting simply can’t fix. That’s where the “Mommy Makeover”—a term that actually encompasses a number of surgical procedures, including labiaplasty, liposuction, abdominoplasty (tummy tuck), and breast augmentation/lift—comes in.

Mommy Makeovers, which are scaled and adapted according to each patient’s unique needs, can be a very effective solution to the body issues pregnancy can create. But it’s essential that women only undergo these procedures when the time is right. At minimum, you should wait at least six months after giving birth before undergoing any of the cosmetic surgical procedures that fall under the umbrella of the Mommy Makeover—and you also shouldn’t be planning on having any more children. (In other words, if you just had your first child, and you think you might have another, hold off!)

Why is it important to wait? For one, these surgeries are for body contouring, not weight loss. You also need to have already stopped breastfeeding, because your breasts need to be back at their normal size before you have them surgically altered in any way. And you shouldn’t get a Mommy Makeover if you’re just getting started having children because a second (or third, or fourth!) pregnancy could undo the changes you’ve made, and then you’ll just be right back in the same boat you were in before.

We all have different bodies—and pregnancies—and because of that, we all recover at different rates. Don’t let the celebrities on the big screen and in the pages of your magazines make you feel bad about yourself. Do what you can to stay healthy in the months following the birth of your child, and let things unfold naturally—don’t rush it! When and if the time is right, I’ll be here to talk to you about your options.

–Dr. Usha Rajagopal

What’s The Difference Between a Tummy Tuck & Liposuction?

*Disclaimer: Results are not guaranteed and may vary from person to person.

How much does a tummy tuck cost?

For a mini-abdominoplasty(mini tummy tuck) , the price ranges from $6,500-$7,500 at Dr. Rajagopal’s office, the San Francisco Plastic Surgery & Laser Center.  The price of a full abdominoplasty ranges from $7,500 – $10,000. Since each patient has different needs, the final cost of the surgery depends on the amount of excess skin and fat deposits that are removed.  The price ranges quoted above are all inclusive.

If you have any questions about getting back your pre-pregnancy body, or wish to schedule a consultation with Dr. Rajagopal, please call the San Francisco Plastic Surgery & Laser Center at 415-392-3333.