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One Month Enough for Tummy Tuck, Breast Lift with Implants Recovery?

I am planning on taking a month off work to have a Tummy Tuck and a breast lift with breast implants. Is that enough time off work if I'm a hair stylist?

Doctor Answers 16

Return to Work time for Tummy Tuck, Breast Lift with Breast Implants

Tummy Tuck and Breast Augmentation with Lift Recovery is simultaneous and you can probably go back to full time work as a hair stylist within a month.. Nothing special about the breast augmentation lift surgery other than not using you chest muscles/arms to lift things and wearing your surgical bra and garments as directed by your plastic surgeon. Most surgeons use either a pain pump or else Exparel which is a local anesthetic injected at the time of surgery that lasts for 3 days and doesn't require tubes like a pain pump such as the On-Q device and can be used for your breast and tummy surgery.


Immediately after surgery, within the first few hours, the patients will walk in a slightly bent-over position. Start walking flexed at the waist (in a stooped position) for a few minutes every 1-2 hours the evening of surgery and continuing daily except when sleeping. This will minimize your risk for blood clots. Wear your TED stockings. Following the tummy tuck procedure, you should be in a flexed position to minimize tension on the incision sites by to bending at the hips (waist) in order to reduce tension on the newly tightened skin. A recliner chair is perfect for this purpose but a pillow beneath your knees and several at the head of the bed will work well also. A 'reclined' or sitting position relieves tension on the incision. During the 6 weeks after surgery: 
In about one week you can gradually stand up straight.
Gradually increase activity as tolerated.
No sexual activity for 6 weeks after surgery.
Wiggle your toes and move your ankles in circles in bed every hour.
No heavy exercise, bending, lifting, baths, swimming, sun exposure, smoking, alcohol or sports
for 6 weeks following surgery after your surgeon has given you clearance to do so.
Limit napping to one short nap (less than an hour) per day to prevent sleep disturbance at night..
Strenuous activity and the lifting of more than ten pounds must be avoided.  Many patients are able to return to work and daily activities within 2 weeks of surgery.  Softening of the surgical scars, return of sensation, and loosening of the tight sensation may take several months. Abdominoplasty recovery can be in some cases slow and uncomfortable requiring more time for a full recovery. Light activity is comfortable in 10-20 days. You should be able to resume work as a hair stylist by then.

Sports will be more comfortable after 6 weeks.

Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 63 reviews

Mommy Makeover: Tummy tuck with breast implants


In general and in most instances, a one month recovery for return to work after a breast lift/augmentation with tummy tuck is a reasonable amount of time.

If your job involves heavy or strenous physical activity, then you may have additional work restrictions.

Always discuss your concerns with your surgeon.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 55 reviews

Quicker recovery from tummy tuck and breast surgery

You have received good advice from the previous posts, but here are a few additional suggestions to help speed your recovery. A technique for abdominoplasty called "progressive tension sutures" helps to lessen the time you have to have the drain tube in from 7-10 days down to 3-5 days in most cases. That can really jump-start your recovery. The use of pain pumps such as the On-Q can also minimize the need for narcotic pain medication which also helps to speed things along and get you moving sooner. You may feel up to going back as soon as 2-1/2 or 3 weeks but avoid lifting anything heavy for 6 weeks.

Richard Baxter, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

Recovery after multiple procedures

Dear Felicia,

What you are describing is a "mommy makeover". This is a large part of my practice and most patients are able to go back to work within one month. This does not mean that you are fully healed. This can take up to 6 months or longer. As a hair stylist, you spend considerable time standing. I suggest that you should still wear your compression girdle for 6-8 weeks. You'll find that the lower abdomen stands to swell later in the day and this might take 2-3 months to correct itself. For further information, visit my web site: Best of luck.

One month recovery is good estimate after tummy tuck,breast lift and breast augmentation

Thank you for your question. If your surgery goes smoothly and there are no complications during recovery, I would expect that a month is adequate recovery time before returning to work as a hairdresser.Most important you should check with the surgeon who is performing your procedures and follow the plastic surgeons guidelines who is actually operating on you.

Tummy tuck recovery

I think it is best to prepare for a “recovery”  of at least 4 weeks after tummy tuck  surgery. Descriptions of recovery times shorter than this,  in my opinion, is over-promising (especially in your profession).

I do have another word of advice for you. Patients who are about to undergo tummy tuck surgery spend a lot of time thinking about the physical preparation for the procedure (for example weight loss issues) but do not spend a lot of time thinking about the emotional aspects.
It is not uncommon for patients who undergo the procedure to experience severe “mood swings”. These emotions may range from depression ( “why did I do this to myself”) to elation  (which may lead to over activity). I think it is helpful to be aware that these emotional swings do occur postoperatively.
Suggestions I have for patients undergoing this procedure: 1. Make sure you have a strong support system in place who have time/patience to take care of you. 2. Be patient with the healing process, understanding that it will take several weeks to months to feel “normal” again. 3. Be prepared to distract your mind with things of interest such as books, magazines, and movies. 4. Expect less of yourself; do not go back to work too early and let others take care of you (for a change). 5. Keep in close communication with your surgeon and do not hesitate to communicate questions/concerns and the emotional swings that you may experience. 6. Keep in mind the end result!

One month enough recovery for breast lift with breast implants ant tummy tuck.


In New York City, we let our patients exercise one month after having a breast lift with breast implants and a tummy tuck. So you should be fine.

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Time Off for Tummy Tuck, Breast Lift with Breast Augmentation

Recovery time is definitely patient dependent. However, let's take a look at each procedure. According to my patients a standard breast lift is only mildly painful with a short down time, maybe a week.

Breast augmentation will give you soreness, mildly, even at 4 weeks. Most patients state that it feels like they've done a really hard work-out at the gym. Using your arms for an 8 hour day in your job may be a little difficult at 4 weeks but definitely doable.

The tummy tuck will cause the most pain. Suturing of the rectus muscles causes the most pain in this surgery. However, I haven't had any patient that couldn't work, even standing on their feet for 8 hours, after 4 weeks.

Recovery from tummy tuck, breast implants, and breast lift

One month is fine to go back to work, but I would recommend avoiding any heavy lifting or exercise for 6 weeks.  Also, make sure you take lots of breaks in between clients, and sit down as much as you can while working.  Good luck!

Time off work after Tummy Tuck and Breast Lift with Implants

Yes, in the majority of patients 4 weeks would be adequate time off from work as a hair-stylist. Your surgeon may recommend no lifting until 6 weeks from surgery.

When you first go back, try not to schedule a heavy load those first few days. Even though it may be safe, you energy level and endurance won't be normal. There is still lots of healing going on.

Your time to final healing can be months to a year or more.

John E. Gross, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.