Can I Swim 4 Weeks After a Mommy Makeover?

Mommy makeover planned for Apr 29th and trip to Mexico one month later. Will I be able to swim (or at least get in the water) by then?

Doctor Answers 28

Swimming 4 weeks after a Mommy Makeover

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A Mommy Make-Over is an umbrella term describing a group of operations performed to reverse the damages to a woman's body by pregnancy(ies). It encompasses any of a combination of Tummy Tuck, Liposuction, Breast Augmentation with or without a lift, among others.

As regards the 4 week recovery deadline, I think you may be shaving it too close. Such a target deadline is possible but far from assured and would depend on a smooth recovery free of potential complications. Six to 8 weeks would be a more realistic forecast for several such procedures.

Hope it all works great for you.

Dr. P. Aldea

Memphis Plastic Surgeon

Mommy makeover recovery

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Yes.  You will be able to swim and wear a bikini.  However, scars may not mature at one month postoperatively. 

Raffy Karamanoukian, MD, FACS
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 95 reviews

Water activities and swimming after mommy makeover

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Generally by 4 weeks after mommy makeover surgery, all incisions are healed and you should be able to get into the water.

Your breasts and especially abdomen may feel tight, however. I, therefore, recommend swimming at a very slow pace and do not push yourself if you feel uncomfortable.

Most importantly, however, is to avoid any sun exposure to your surgery areas. It will take at least 6-12 months for the blood supply to your abdomen to return to normal. Therefore, even a minor sun burn in one part of your body may result in a full-thickness burn on your abdomen. This may require skin grafting and will obviously result in a poor cosmetic result.

Michael A. Jazayeri, MD
Santa Ana Plastic Surgeon

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Swimming after a Mommy Make Over

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This is a very common question. A Mommy Make Over is an extensive surgical endeavor often with dramatic and life changing results. In order to achieve a great outcome it is very important to be very careful about your postoperative recovery. Considering a Mommy Make Over normally consists of some type of breast reshaping , liposuction, and a tummy tuck, either full or mini, there will be several lengthy incisions which will require healing. Complete healing and sealing of these wounds is essential before a person should immerse themselves in water. The tiniest of opening can allow entry of bacteria and potentially cause a serious infection. Many times public bodies of water such as a river, lake , ocean or even a public pool can contain unusual and possibly antibiotic resistant organisms that can result in a very serious problem. Even after the wounds themselves appear to be sealed stitches under the skin can work themselves out causing a small opening and allowing the ingress of bacteria. It would be best to delay immersing yourself in water until your surgeon has had the ability to examine your wounds and provide you with a release.
The physical act of swimming also needs to be considered. After a full abdominoplasty and especially one that includes muscle tightening it is best to refrain from activities that stress the core for at least eight weeks.
Very often swimming is performed outdoors in a bathing suit that might not cover parts of the body involved in the Mommy Make Over. Very often these areas are numb or have reduced feeling for several months. Because of the decreased sensation there is a greater chance of a serious sunburn which can cause irreversible scarring.

John J. Edney, MD
Omaha Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 133 reviews

Swimming After Mommy Makeover

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If your mommy makeover includes a tummy tuck, most plastic surgeons will recommend no heavy lifting or strenuous activity for 5-6 weeks after your procedure.  If your incisions are healing very well, then at four weeks you will likely be cleared to get into the pool.  But no swimming.  Talk to your plastic surgeon.  Have fun on your trip.

Swimming after a Mommy Makeover

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Hi there-

When it is most appropriate to resume physical activity like swimming will depend on the details of your Mommy Makeover and your surgeon's preferred techniques...

Generally speaking, if you are having a tummy tuck with muscle tightening, I would not want you swimming for 6 weeks after surgery.

Your best bet, however, is to discuss this with your surgeon- they are the only one who will have the complete understanding of the procedure you will have necessary to completely answer your question.

Cutting it close for sun drenched pool vacation one month after mommy makeover

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IT is possible that you will be able to get in the water but it depends on the extent of the procedures performed and an uneventful recovery. In any case it will be close and you should be avoiding sun exposure. It may be truly difficult to enjoy that vacation.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 86 reviews

Healing and Activity Following a Mommy Makeover

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The Mommy Makeover is a combination of procedures to bring a woman’s body back to the way she looked prior to pregnancy. Most commonly some variation of a #TummyTuck and #BreastSurgery are performed. Additional procedures can include liposuction, umbilical hernia repair.  The most common #breastprocedures include #mastopexy or #breastlift, #breastaugmentation, or #breastreduction.    

Healing after a  #tummytuck will require time. Some patients are out of bed and walking the night of surgery and every hour while awake. I allow my patients to return to work at one to two weeks with 14 days preferred.  However, no lifting or straining.  At three weeks, increased level of activity and full with no restrictions, at 6 weeks. #MummyTummy is a term given to modified tummy tucks which can use liposuction and skin tightening with radiofrequency such Vanquish, Vela3, thermage, thermiRF and others.  The actual fat contouring can be done non-surgically as well with #UltraShape or Cool-Sculpting.
As I advise my patients, if your work keeps you sedentary, you may return whenever you feel up to it. If your work is strenuous, wait until your work activity does not cause any superficial pain. 
Some employers will modify a person’s job duties so they can back sooner, but without physical activity. Our office can provide our patients with a note stating they are not to engage in strenuous activity for a specified period of time. The note will not disclose what procedure they have underwent. Therefore, you may have to request a similar note from your surgeon if you are not independently employed. I recommend avoiding heavy lifting and strenuous #activity for six weeks following your surgery. With that said, it may help you plan your return to work accordingly.

As for heavy lifting and other #strenuous #activities, it should be avoided for until you have clearance from your surgeon. You may, however, do normal activities at any time if they cause no pain or #discomfort. Let your body tell you what you can or cannot do. Aerobic exercise will raise your blood pressure, which could cause late bleeding and harm your result. Once you begin exercising again, start gently and let your body tell you what it can tolerate. Don’t rush!!  If you have concerns about your healing, or pain that you question to be unusual, it is important to call your plastic surgeon to discuss these further asked to be examined.

Jed H. Horowitz, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 116 reviews

Wait 6-8 Weeks to Swim

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A mommy makeover is a great procedure to counteract the changes that occur in a women’s body after pregnancy. It can combine breast surgery with body contouring procedures like tummy tuck and liposuction to create dramatic changes in your figure. It is a wonderful way to address numerous problems with just one surgery and one recovery, but that convenience comes at a cost. The recuperation from a big surgery just naturally takes longer than it would be for a single simple surgery. Expect that you will need to take at least 2wks off of work (depending on the job) that you will need to restrict your physical activities until you are heled which is usually at least 4-6 weeks, and as for swimming you will need to wait until all of your incisions are completely healed up (without any open spots or any stitches still in) Before you can immerse yourself in water even in the bath. Swimming in a pool, lake, or ocean is even riskier due to all of the organisms and bacteria that are swimming around in there with you! This is usually at least 6-8 weeks post op or possibly even longer. The consequences of doing that too soon are that you could develop a serious infection that could result in losing your implant or even death if it is not treated soon enough. The best advice is not to try to do things too soon, and keep yourself out of danger.


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Your plastic surgeon will give you the best answer in your specific case about swimming  and sex timing. For most of my patients I allow both swimming and sex to begin at 6 weeks post surgery with the woman on top to minimize the risk of trauma. Here are some fo the guidelines I give my patients: Following surgery, you will be walking in a bent-over position to keep tension off the newly tightened skin incision site. Although strenuous activity, and lifting more than ten pounds, must be avoided for 6 weeks, some people can return to work and daily activities as soon as 2 weeks after surgery. Softening of the surgical scars, return of sensation, and loosening of the tight sensation may take several months to a year or more.
Abdominoplasty involves a recovery period of 10 to 14 days longer than most plastic surgical procedures. Initial discomfort and decreased mobility is typical. To decrease this discomfort, we offer a long acting local anesthetic. This numbing injection solution (Exparel) which lasts for 3-4 days allows for an easier recovery and is preferable to older pain pump technology.
3-5 days or more of assistance at home is usually indicated. We can arrange for a nurse to stay with you if helpful.
You will be encouraged to move and walk regularly starting the day of surgery. Wearing your TED stockings at all times, except while washing, to prevent venous clots (deep vein thrombosis) is mandatory.
Light activity is comfortable in 10-20 days. No sports or heavy lifting for 6 weeks or more – please discuss with your doctor for specific questions.

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.