How Long After Full TT with MR Before I Can Care for my One Year Old Son?

I am asking about basic child care, putting him in and getting him out of crib, lifting him onto diaper changing table, putting him to bed, etc. Just basic, necessary lifting..certainly nothing overboard or not needed while healing. I assumed it was along the rule of no lifting anything for 4-6 weeks post op. Another poster here mentioned that her PS said she could not hold/carry her 1 yr old child for 3 months! Of coarse some situations may be different so what is the general rule of thumb?

Doctor Answers 6

Lifting children after tummy tuck: the reality of it

There are two standards:  that which should be done, and that which is actually done.

Of course surgeons encourage patients not to lift their young children after tummy tuck surgery for as much as six weeks postoperatively as possible, particularly if a hernia repair around the umbilicus is involved.

However, I know what happens when young mothers get home:  they are back on duty.

It helps to plan ahead and have additional help, in laws, parents, etc. to help with the lifting of the children.  However, who will put the child in the car seat when suddenly nobody is there?  Post tummy tuck patients should exercise as much caution as they can, particularly in the first two weeks.  If caught in a position where they have to lift, it is best to lift with the legs rather than with the core.

Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 177 reviews

Child care after a tummy tuck

This is a commonly asked question and one where there is such variability of answers. Ultimately, whomever you choose to perform your tummy tuck, that is whose instructions that you should follow. For my patients, I recommend full time assistance for the first several days to a week. After that, my patients can CAREFULLY perform some of these child care activities but I do explain each one specifically.

It is very important that patients are careful because of the risk of breakage of the muscle repair or precipitation of bleeding. 

Steven Turkeltaub, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Child care after tummy tuck

Great question! I would recommend that you refrain from lifting for at least a month after surgery. A one year old weighs at least 20 pounds and this would definitely limit your ability to care for your baby without assistance. Many patients try to coordinate their surgeries with their spouses' vacations and then arrange for family members to help out.

Robert L. Kraft, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

Lifting after Tummy Tuck

Plastic surgeons may differ on how long they restrict your activity.  Most of the surgeons in my community recommend between 4 and 6 weeks. 

Don W. Griffin, MD
Nashville Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 72 reviews

Lifting after tummy tuck


As you might expect your level of comfort and activity restriction after a tummy tuck may vary.  This variable depends on a number of factors including:

1) How tight your closure is

2) Whether abdominal wall muscle tightening was performed

3) Your plastic surgeons prefernces

4) Your pain tolerance

In general, lifting should be limited to very small amounts in the first 2 weeks, perhaps only 5 pounds or so.  If you wear your abdominal binder tightly you may be able to increase this amount a little weeks 3-4 especially if you use your legs and limit how often the lifting is performed.  Most individuals will be able to take care of a 1 year old by about weeks 4-6.  Of course you will have to listen to your body closely and make sure that you do not overdo it.

All the best,

Dr Repta

Remus Repta, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 162 reviews

Child Care after Tummy Tuck

Thank you for the question.

As you know the tummy tuck operation is a major operation;  every patient experiences a different recovery course. This makes it difficult to discuss “general rules of thumb”.

I would suggest planning for the worst-case scenario which will hopefully be about 6 weeks away from child care activities. Your  plastic surgeon will help guide you  with activity level depending on how your recovery proceeds.

I hope this helps.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,485 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.