First of all, congratulations on your weight loss! Changing old habits and sticking to a regimen is very difficult, which is where most people give up on their goals. You fully understand that you should be happy and proud of what you have accomplished, but something else is bothering you. After drastic weight loss, among the good you have done for yourself comes frustration because of the loose skin that further leads to confidence issues. In most cases, taking proper care of skin and leading a healthy lifestyle is simply not enough to allow the skin tighten itself.
Making the Decision
Some people see the loose skin differently; it is something that reminds them of the checkpoint they have reached. For others, it is the opposite. They had been working so hard towards a goal, yet to arrive at another problem. ‘Surgery’ is a big, scary word. It is not something we want to talk about, let alone be urged towards. But as with many things, if we know who to trust, surgery does not need to be as scary as it sounds. An experienced plastic surgeon will be able to tell you all of the details you need to know. Depending on the body part and the planned procedure, the operating time, price, and recovery will all be different.
What You Need to Know
These types of surgery have their similarities regarding requirements. Your weight needs to remain stable, and any health issues need to be resolved prior to surgery, as they can lead to complications. Managing stress, which can often serve as a motivator to overeat and smoke, is important both before and after body modifications. Furthermore, it is important for you to have realistic expectations. While a professional can do a wonderful job, minor scaring will be visible. While they do wonders, it is important not to mistake our doctors for magicians. Having unreal ideas, some people often end up taking multiple procedures, only to damage their overall health and end up dissatisfied. If you are certain you have good expectations and are not aiming after the ‘perfect’ body, you have already solved the biggest issue. After staying true to yourself, speak to your surgeon and together with them decide which procedure would be best for you, even if apart from skin removal you might opt for a cosmetic modification.
Types of Operations
Excess skin removal or skin excisions are aimed at different parts of the body. Body lifts are aimed at aesthetic improvement, patients are put under general anesthesia and incisions are made to remove excess skin and fat cells, while during some operations muscles are also tightened to achieve a better cosmetic appearance.
Abdominoplasty is focused on tightening the abdomen, whether the need arises from weight loss or pregnancy. Liposuction acts as a non-invasive way of removing fat, but in some cases that approach alone is not enough. Complete abdominoplasty usually takes two to three hours, and it involves an incision on the lower part of the abdominal area. Professionals will, apart from removing fat cells, tighten the muscles which may have loosened. Typically, scars disappear during the next year. During recovery, it is important to stay active. Moving, while not overburdening yourself, gives your body the circulation it needs post-operation. While not an instantaneous change, over time the change will be apparent in terms of general image and clothes will be a better fit. The patient’s confidence will receive a huge boost as well.
It is important to mention mammoplasty as well. While women seek out breast augmentation both for cosmetic purposes and in terms of self-confidence, others have serious, daily neck and back issues because of their bigger bust. As this pain leads to further complications, breast reduction surgery is a great means to achieve relief; as well as opening the chance to participate in sports, which they were unable to take part in before. Men also benefit from breast reduction, as excess glandular tissue causes discomfort for lean patients as they notice enlarged breasts. Post-surgery comments are always wonderful, as men mention feeling comfortable to be shirtless, something that they have not felt in even years before the operation. The enhanced confidence and motivation shows them opportunities to join events which they avoided earlier, as well as a sense of relief. The drastic and immediate results of mammoplasty really can change a persons approach to life, when handled by a professional.
Brachioplasty is the term used for arm lifts, surgical procedures which reshape and tighten the upper arms. Again, liposuction is the least invasive way of removing extra fat, but it may result in wrinkles and sagging. Minimal incision brachioplasty, under right conditions, serves as an alternative to the traditional technique as it helps conceal the surgical scar. Compared to an abdominal surgery, it is much simpler, and recovery comes at a much quicker rate.
Rhytidectomy is the professional name of a facelift, and the main reason for undertaking this type of surgery would be aging. As a way to counteract aging, rhytidectomy finds usage in the removal of excess skin, along with the tightening of cheek and neck muscles. It can be performed alone, or alongside forehead and eyebrow lifts, or nose surgery. Of course recovery will not be quick, and at the beginning swelling and bruising might be apparent. It is important not to worry, as attitude is also big part of the healing. Keep your head elevated as to speed up recovery and minimize the swelling, and true results will shortly follow.
Another of the popular requests doctors take up, rhinoplasty finds purpose as both a health and beauty boost. Regarding medical reasons, rhinoplasty can correct breathing problems that come from a birth defect or physical trauma. There are boxers who end up with serious problems, and they have regular check-ups so that no complications occur. On the other hand, it is a procedure that can be done for cosmetic reasons, changing shape and appearance. It involves rearrangement of nose bone and cartilage resulting in a new look.
While these procedures and more fall into the same group of ‘common’ operations, there are big and apparent differences. Recovery time would be one of them. Following an arm lift the patient can be sent home the same day, while procedures around the midsection demand several days of rest in a hospital. This is why there is not a ‘general’ surgery; Skin removal and tightening is personalized, depending on the unique concerns of the patient and what they find suitable.
Choosing a Professional
While it is an option to do four or possibly more and it does not seem dangerous to work on different parts of the body, it is not recommended as it is a risky choice without a few months passing in between the operations. This would be a good reason as to why it is important who we choose for our support, which doctor we choose to ask for help. A highly experienced, board certified surgeon with specific training can make us feel at ease; we will know that we are in safe hands. Employees of the Panthea Plastic Surgery clinic point this out nicely, as they say that “the safest hands are the best trained hands”.
As was said before, there are steps that can be taken before surgery, as it is a serious move. But apart from the health-based decisions, it is important that we stay positive throughout this journey. There are many stories of patients suddenly getting better, and what they all have in common is their optimistic outlook and self-confidence. While the feeling of discomfort will certainly appear at times, you are doing something great for yourself.
While we ultimately can’t affect some aspects of our life, we need to make use of what we can. Keep going forward, keep walking with your head held high and keep your body active and healthy, and it is going to support you as best it can. While it is one of your main supporters, remember that none of us are alone. The support people receive from friends and family is incomparable, as we need to remember we are not alone. Never be ashamed to ask for an opinion, to ask for help or support from the people closest to you, or professionals.