Pamper Yourself With a “Mommy Makeover”

This post is sponsored by MercyOne Des Moines Medical Center

mommy makeoverMay is an important month to recognize mothers, especially for the limitless sacrifices you undergo in bearing and raising children. Many joys arise from being a mother, but pregnancy and breastfeeding can take a toll on a woman’s body. 

Have you ever considered having a “mommy makeover?”

Common Types of Mommy Makeovers

A “mommy makeover” aims to improve the areas of the body affected by pregnancy. Though it most commonly treats the breasts (breast lift and or implant placement) and the belly (tummy tuck), other procedures can also be involved – most commonly liposuction – for additional body contouring. 

The body changes that happen to the breasts during pregnancy, in addition to the constant effects of aging and gravity, can cause women’s breasts to become droopy or look deflated over time. Surgeries on the breast aim to counteract these changes.

No two women’s anatomy or desired appearance are the same. Because of these differences, the procedure is tailored to each woman’s unique anatomy and wishes. A breast lift or “mastopexy” aims to correct droopiness of the breasts. The incision for this procedure can vary from a circle around the areola alone or in combination with a vertical scar along the central breast. An anchor-like incision that also includes a horizontal scar running along the lower breast fold is also possible.

A breast augmentation entails placing an implant in the breast to add volume. This can help with the deflated appearance the breasts can develop over time. An augmentation is most commonly performed through an inconspicuous incision above the lower breast fold, but can also be performed through incisions that run along the border of the areola or through an incision in the armpit.  

Some women are best treated with both a lift and an implant placement. This combined procedure is known as a mastopexy-augmentation. The implant can correct the deflated appearance and add fullness to the upper pole of the breast while the lift aims to improve the droopiness. 

What is a Tummy Tuck?

mommy makeoverThe tummy is another area that is commonly affected by childbearing.

Excess, lax, or redundant belly skin, as well as separation of the rectus abdominis muscles, are common occurrences after pregnancy. The rectus abdominis are the muscles in the center of the abdomen you can see in someone who has a six-pack. The separation of these muscles, called diastasis, can cause a pouchiness in the central abdomen. Diastasis can be mild in some cases or very severe in others.  

Unfortunately, diastasis can only be repaired surgically. While sit-ups and core exercises can strengthen the abdominal muscles, they cannot correct diastasis. During a tummy tuck, excess skin is removed and the diastasis is repaired. Variations from a mini tummy tuck to a full tummy tuck are individualized. 


Liposuction is another procedure that can be added to a mommy makeover. Common areas treated include the flanks and inner thighs, but can also include other problematic areas. Liposuction requires only small incisions resulting in equally minimal scarring. Incisions are usually placed in inconspicuous locations, such as in the belly button for abdominal liposuction or near the groin crease for inner thigh liposuction. 

Multiple procedures are often combined in a “mommy makeover.” This takes advantage of a single session under general anesthesia and one recovery period. A mommy makeover is usually performed as either an outpatient or with an overnight hospital stay.

While a mommy makeover is not for all women, it can help correct some of the bodily changes that result from pregnancy. The best way to find out if it’s right for you is to consult with a plastic surgeon and find out what options are available to you.

Samuel M. Maurice, MD, FACS, FAAP

mommy makeoverDr. Maurice specializes in all areas of plastic, cosmetic, and craniofacial surgery. He founded Mercy Plastic Surgery in 2011, to bring his expertise to the central Iowa region.

His individualized approach to plastic surgery helps each patient make educated decisions designed to achieve their desired outcomes. To request an appointment with Dr. Maurice at MercyOne Des Moines Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery, please call 515-643-5455.

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The post is part of a series of sponsored posts by MercyOne Des Moines Medical Center.

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