Factors that negatively affect the appearance of the tummy
Nowadays people find it more and more difficult to get and keep a flat and firm tummy. Sometimes it is the fat accumulation on the midline, otherwise it is an excess of skin or the abdomen just looks protruding. Despite what some people believe, not all the issues of the abdominal wall can be corrected with some physical exercise and a stricter diet. The reality is that there are some factors that can affect the appearance of the tummy and lead to imperfections on the abdominal wall that can only be corrected with the help of plastic surgery.
In this article we will discuss factors that negatively affect the appearance of the tummy and how we can correct different imperfections of the abdominal wall.
The aging process
The abdominal wall is just as affected by the aging process just like any other part of the body. This means that in time, some people will start to accumulate fat on the waist while the skin will lose elasticity and start sagging. Weight accumulation on the abdomen and flanks can occur even in people who are dedicated to keeping an active lifestyle. But with age, it gets more and more difficult to keep the fat away, and it can become hard and even impossible to avoid fat accumulation on the midline after a certain age. However, it is also important to mention that the fat accumulation on the midline will be less significant in people who exercise routinely and have a good and balanced eating regimen compared to people who have a more sedentary lifestyle and don’t eat too well.
The aging process can’t be avoided, but what can be done to have an aesthetic appearance of the tummy for longer is to exercise, eat healthy and balanced, keep hydrated, and use moisturizing creams to keep the skin hydrated.
Unlike the natural aging process, this factor can actually be avoided. Weight fluctuations are one of the factors that can produce significant damage on the tummy as well as other areas of the body. The appearance of the whole body is changed when weight gain occurs and then changes occur again when the weight loss happens.
When we gain weight, the skin stretches to accommodate the excess kilograms. But when we lose those excess kilograms, the skin can’t shrink back on the new contours of the body so it will be left saggy in a vast majority of cases. After weight loss occurs, it can also happen for a certain amount of fat to be difficult to remove, even after months or years of a strict regimen. This is why it is important to completely avoid weight fluctuations if you want to keep a beautiful appearance of the body, especially the tummy. Weight fluctuations of more than two kilograms every month can significantly damage the aesthetics of the body and leave behind fat deposits and saggy skin.
Pregnancy is a special time in a woman’s life. Having a new life growing inside you can trigger a lot of different emotions. However, one thing that is certain is that in a vast majority of cases, pregnancy will leave permanent marks on the body, and not very nice ones.
It can happen after pregnancy for women to be left with an unsightly appearance of the breasts, stretch marks on different parts of the body, and a protruding, saggy abdomen. This can happen even for women who have lost all the baby weight but are still left with a saggy tummy. There is also diastasis recti, which is a condition that affects the muscles of the abdominal wall. Due to the growing of the uterus during pregnancy, the muscles are stretched and a gap is created between them. After childbirth, the muscles don’t come together again on the median line, and the gap between them doesn’t allow the abdomen to look flat and firm. Diastasis recti can’t be corrected with physical exercises, and in some cases, performing physical exercises that are not recommended when suffering from diastasis recti can make the condition even more visible and severe. The only solution to correct this is to undergo surgery.
Surgical solutions for a flat and firm tummy
- Abdominal liposuction
When the patient is confronted with just an unwanted layer of fat on the abdominal area, chances are abdominal liposuction will do the trick and help the patient get the flat and firm tummy that she wants.
Abdominal liposuction is one of the most commonly performed plastic surgery procedures in the world, and it delivers spectacular results when the patient is a good candidate. To be a good candidate for abdominal liposuction, the patient should have good skin elasticity. This means that the procedure is not to be performed as a stand-alone procedure on patients over a certain age. Aging affects skin quality and makes it less probable for the skin to retract on the new contours of the body after the procedure.
Also, the results of the procedure are not only dependent on the talent of the plastic surgeon but also the patient’s ability to comply with the rules to be followed after the procedure. After abdominal liposuction, the patient should wear a girdle for at least two to four weeks to reduce the swelling and refine the results. Weight fluctuations are to be avoided after undergoing an abdominal liposuction to avoid the alteration of the results.
- Tummy tuck
The tummy tuck (or abdominoplasty as it is known in medical terms) is a more complex and invasive procedure that is performed on patients who don’t have a good skin quality or are suffering due to other imperfections on the abdominal wall such as umbilical hernia, skin sagginess, and diastasis recti, among others. When the tummy tuck is performed, the plastic surgeon will make an incision on the lower part of the tummy, on the suprapubic area. The skin and underlying fat tissue are detached from the muscles, and the muscles are strengthened with sutures after being brought together on the median line. Once this operation is completed, the skin and fat tissue are re-draped on the tummy and good tension is restored to create a flat and firm tummy.
Sometimes the tummy tuck is recommended to be performed with an abdominal liposuction to achieve better results. The tummy tuck alone has no effect on the fat layer on the abdomen, so if the plastic surgeon considers that there is a significant adipose layer and it can be reduced with liposuction, both procedures could be performed at the same time.
Another derived procedure is the hourglass tummy tuck. This procedure has been developed with the aim of improving the shortcomings of the traditional tummy tuck. The hourglass tummy tuck entails combining liposuction with the classic abdominoplasty and a fat transfer to the hips to help the patient achieve not only a flat and firm tummy but also an improved shape of the body.
To be able to undergo a tummy tuck, patients should be in good health and emotional condition and understand that an ulterior pregnancy or weight fluctuations can alter the results.
There are several factors that can negatively affect the appearance of the tummy. Some of them can’t be prevented, and this is in the case of the natural aging process that can trigger fat accumulation on the midline and also saggy skin on the tummy as a result of a reduction in elastin and collagen in the skin.
Pregnancy and weight fluctuations are other factors that can change the appearance of the tummy for the worst. Any weight fluctuation of more than 2 kg every month can have negative effects on the appearance of the tummy. When it comes to pregnancy, a condition called diastasis recti can affect the muscles of the tummy by creating a gap between them. This condition can only be corrected surgically.
The surgical methods that we can use nowadays to restore the beautiful appearance of the tummy are abdominal liposuction and the tummy tuck. Patients with different aesthetic imperfections on the tummy will be recommended one or the other procedure. Also, there are variations and combinations of procedures that can be performed together with a tummy tuck, such as the hourglass tummy tuck.