Have you ever found yourself sitting by the pool, keeping one eye on the kids, and at the same time watching that mom? The one who seemingly has it all together. She has a few kids, always has a fresh pedicure, and is the pinnacle of fitness and good health. Why do you feel this pressure to be like her, to look like her?
A friend described our struggle in a poignant way–
We expect ourselves to look as peaceful as ducks to the outside observer: blissfully gliding, while hiding the underwater truth where we are paddling with all our might. We need to make beauty, success, mothering look effortless while working at this ideal tirelessly behind closed doors. This strain can leave some women broken in the process.
I love what I do as a plastic surgeon because I empower women to shatter that mold. Just yesterday I had a successful businesswoman and mother of two come in to discuss improving her appearance. After we came up with a personalized skin care regimen, I put my hand on the doorknob and asked the question, “anything else you want to discuss?” Woman to woman. Mom to mom. And that’s when the truth came spilling out. This strong woman, the pinnacle of success, was reduced to tears over her postpartum body, and how devastated she was that she couldn’t “shed the weight” no matter how much she “worked out.”
Today I am going to tell you about a few myths that I spend hours breaking down in person when I help my patients learn to love their true selves, and to show themselves the same compassion they reserve for their loved ones.
Myth #1: If I work out hard enough, I can get rid of the belly flab.
Not true! The “pooch” as it can be affectionately called, or that part of your belly that seems fluffy, pudgy and soft is not going to go away with a thousand crunches. Or a million, for that matter. Loose muscle and skin that once made way for one, two, or three babies, does not just “snap back.” Further, your body stores fat more during each pregnancy, and breastfeeding successfully often requires intake of extra calories. It is a miracle that our bellies go down as much as they do considering all this!
As a mother of two who is still breastfeeding her 7-month-old, trust me, I can completely relate. The most common plastic surgery approach to treating this belly flab is a tummy tuck with liposuction. We can remove extra skin and fat, tighten the muscles and improve the waistline all in one operation. This is a part of the mommy makeover procedure, which is one of our most commonly performed procedures at Tannan Plastic Surgery.
Stop looking at yourself in the mirror with frustration. It is not vain to seek help in looking the way you feel – young and fit. If the extra skin and flab of your belly bothers you, consult your board certified plastic surgeon to discuss options for treating it.
Myth #2: My breasts will not sag if I wear a bra all the time.
Our breasts change with pregnancy. Whether you breastfeed or not, they still swell, get big, then deflate and hang low. Occasionally some women have even larger breasts after all is said and done. The once perky fibrous tissue is replaced by fat – and we all know what fat does. It hangs. With gravity, hormonal changes and time, our breasts are not what they once were. So again, when you look around yourself in the gym, at burn boot camp, or on fitness blogs you follow – remember, you are not to blame. Your body has changed, and if it bothers you, there are ways we can help.
Sometimes a breast lift is enough to accomplish what you’re looking for. Other times women seek breast augmentation to have a natural but fuller look that they used to enjoy before having kids. These rejuvenating breast surgery options make up the other half of the mommy makeover procedure.
Release yourself from any guilt that you caused your breasts to sag. As a mother and a young professional woman, I feel the pressure and I get it. If you simply want to restore your breasts to their pre-pregnancy volume and shape, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Trust me, you are not alone.
Myth #3: I just need to find the right cream for these pimples and wrinkles and sun spots.
Our skin takes a beating every day. What we got away with in high school and college does not fly in our 30s, 40s, and 50s. We need to have a healthy skin care regimen – which means regular cleansing in the morning and at night. It means regular exfoliation with a scrub a few times a week, and then your skin is primed and ready to receive more potent therapeutics. It could be retinols to help stabilize and strengthen collagen while boosting new collagen production. It could be prescription products to even out the pigmentation changes that occur with pregnancy or improve the texture and tone that change with age. It could be soothing anti-inflammatory products or potent anti-rosacea products to treat the redness.
A lot of these heavy-hitting treatment protocols do double duty and work on fine lines and wrinkles while treating other issues. The makeup counter and online sellers like Amazon do not have access to the prescription strength medicated treatment protocols we do.
At Tannan Plastic Surgery, we offer ZO Skin Health by Zein Obagi. This line has medical grade and high-end skin solutions that can simultaneously strengthen the skin, even tones and texture, and treats fine lines and wrinkles. I also perform chemical peels to help intensify the treatments when indicated.
We have an all-women, and an all-mom team. We help you feel comfortable from the moment you have your consult to the operating suite, which is on-site and AAAASF certified. We have certified anesthesia providers, registered nurses and surgical scrub technicians. We are not only a team of experts, working together to take care of you, but we too are moms, and we are in this together.
Dr. Shruti Tannan is a board-certified plastic surgeon at Tannan Plastic Surgery who specializes in surgical and nonsurgical treatments. With our all-women team we offer the full scope of cosmetic and reconstructive surgery for the breast, body, face and hand with an on-site certified operating room. At Tannan Plastic Surgery, our mission is to restore you to your most confident, positive self, while staying true to who you are. We focus on natural results and highlighting your own innate strengths.