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According to the ASPS, the tummy tuck remains popular, ranking in the top five plastic surgery procedures for both men and women. Recovery time after tummy tuck surgery varies for each person, depending on age, the overall health of the person, type of tummy tuck, and post-surgical care.
Once you are out of surgery, make sure to follow the tips found in this recovery guide to promote a safe and speedy tummy tuck healing process.
What Can I Do to Recover From My Tummy Tuck Quickly and Safely?
Tummy tuck surgery involves an extensive process of cutting and tightening your core skin, muscles, and fat. Since your core strength is essential to all other body movements, all tissues must be handled with special care.
Failure to follow proper healing guidelines can result in injury, infection, inflammation, and lackluster results. This is why it is essential to make your health and comfort a priority during your tummy tuck recovery.
Here are a few things to keep in mind:
Take Care of Your Incisions
When you get a tummy tuck, an incision is usually made from hip bone to hip bone just above the pubic area. You will want to keep this incision clean to avoid developing an infection.
Daily cleaning of the wound is important. Wash in the shower with clean soap and running water. Avoid immersing in bathtubs or any water that is still and potentially contaminated.
Limit Physical Activity
Patients must avoid strenuous physical activity for four to six weeks after their tummy tuck. Any intense physical activity can reopen your wounds and delay the healing process. After seven to 10 days, light walking or stationary bicycling are generally recommended as it promotes blood circulation and will help you heal quicker.
See Your Surgeon for Follow-Up Appointments
Your surgeon will advise on when you should return for a check-up. It is important that you not miss this appointment, as your surgeon will make sure there are no complications from your surgery. They may also provide you with details based on your healing progress, such as your anticipated recovery timeline.
Wear Your Compression Garment
You will be asked to wear an abdominal support garment that helps with swelling and reduces discomfort during the recovery process. Your surgeon will advise you on how many hours to wear the garment per day and the number of days you are recommended. This garment might be placed at the time of surgery or may not begin until after the first week, depending on the circulation to the wound.
Sleep While Bent at the Waist
After your tummy tuck surgery, you will need to keep flexed at the waist for about a week. This helps blood flow to the lower central abdomen. Standing straight will compromise the healing if one remains unflexed at the waist for more than an hour at a time.
Get Plenty of Rest
It is essential to get plenty of rest after surgery. Take time off work and ask for help around the house. Whatever you do, you want to avoid overexerting yourself. This can prolong your recovery period and place you at higher risk for complications.
Follow a Nutritious Diet
When you provide your body with the nutrients it needs, it can speed up your healing process. Make sure to eat healthy foods that are rich in protein and iron. A multivitamin is okay but supplements may create too much stress on the digestive system and liver.
Interested in Learning More?
Dr. Hiatt is board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS), which ensures that he has the training and experience to provide a safe and effective procedure. He is also a member of the prestigious American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) and the Aesthetic Society (ASAPS). To schedule your consultation with Dr. Hiatt, please call (480) 844-1410 or fill out our online consultation form.
We look forward to helping you achieve the appearance you desire!