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Are My Post-Pregnancy Body Changes Permanent?

Women undergo significant physical changes during pregnancy. While the body gradually returns to its pre-baby shape, certain changes may ultimately be permanent. Some of the most noticeable areas that are affected by pregnancy include the abdomen and the breasts. Oftentimes, diet and exercise can help reverse changes to these areas, making them look similar to how they were before pregnancy, but in many cases, they may look slightly different.

The abdomen expands over the course of several months to accommodate the growing baby inside. After giving birth, a woman’s belly gradually shrinks back to its former state, which can leave lax or excess skin. Additionally, the abdominal muscles can separate, in what’s known as “diastis recti.” The abdominal skin will slowly tighten, and the muscles may heal on their own. However, in some patients, there will still be sagging skin, as well as a protruding abdomen due to the muscle separation not completely resolving. When this occurs, diet and exercise typically is not enough to restore the abdomen to its pre-pregnancy form.

In addition to changes in the midsection, the breasts may look very different after pregnancy. This is because the breasts often grow as milk is produced. Once this milk is no longer there, the breasts will typically decrease back to their pre-pregnancy size. Similar to the abdomen, this can cause the skin to become lax and not tighten completely, leading to a sagging and flatter appearance.

Although some women seem to easily “bounce back” after pregnancy, seeing minimal long-term effects, others may experience lasting changes. For those who feel unhappy with the changes they have undergone from pregnancy, wanting to restore more youthful body contours, the mommy makeover is available as a surgical solution. Procedures like the tummy tuck, breast lift, and breast augmentation can help correct common concerns of mothers.

Want to learn if a mommy makeover is right for you? Contact Richmond Aesthetic Surgery to schedule a consultation with our board-certified plastic surgeon.

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