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 20

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.

Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 52 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
4.9 out of 5 stars 81 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.

George Marosan, MD
Bellevue Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 38 reviews

Recovery Time for a Tummy Tuck and Breast Lift

A month off seems pretty long.With today’s rapid recovery techniques combined with the NO Drain technique, you should be able to get back to work within about a week to 10 days.Patients who have the rapid recovery protocol are usually out doing things the next day.I have had hairdressers back to their job as early as 5 days after a full tummy tuck (including muscle plication) and a breast lift with augmentation at the same time.

You can check out our tummy tuck page in the link below.

I hope that helps.

Best regards.

Brian Windle, MD
Kirkland Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 62 reviews

Planning your Recovery for a Mommy Makeover

A 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. Also some severe scars can be treated with re-excision, laser, kenalog/5-FU injections, creams, silicone strips and other methods to reduce and improve healing. Additionally, scar therapy with scar maturation products (e.g. BioCorneum or Embrace) are suggested for managing scars. However, we recommend you wait to use scar improving products until a few weeks following your surgery. 
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
5.0 out of 5 stars 109 reviews

Recovery after abdominoplasty

A month should be adequate to return to your job as a hair stylist. If you only had the breast lift and augmentation you could return in two weeks. Your full recovery however is determined more by the abdominoplasty and your recovery will still be ongoing and take longer. In the performance of a full abdominoplasty the skin and fat layer has been elevated off of the underlying muscle layer. This creates two large surface areas that have to heal and seal the space between the two layers. As long as the space remains open and the raw surfaces remain, drainage will continue. Drainage stops when the two surfaces have completely healed and no space remains tween the two layers. This normally takes between ten and fourteen days to occur. During this two week period if there is too much activity these two surface areas continued to shift back and forth over each other preventing adherence and delaying the healing process. For that reason it is best to plan on remaining home for two weeks and keeping activity to a minimal level to allow for the greatest chance of healing and the cessation of drainage. It is important to keep the wounds clean to prevent infection. Patient's should not sleep with their pets. This will help prevent infection. If the muscle has been tightened it is important not to engage in strenuous core activities for at least eight weeks. Aggressive abdominal exercises should not be performed for twelve weeks. Resolution of swelling is different from patient to patient. Most often the swelling is gone and the final result is realized within 6 -8months.
A well performed abdominoplasty can be a truly life changing experience. For patients to have the best chance for a good outcome and is very important to strictly follow the postoperative directions of their surgeon.

John J. Edney, MD
Omaha Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 112 reviews

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

Hello! Thank you for your question! I hope that these answers help! Tummy tuck is an excellent method for shaping the belly and create a flatter and sculpted abdomen after the procedure. Given your desires, I do believe that you would be an excellent candidate for this procedure in order to remove the excess skin/soft tissue of your lower abdomen and contour the areas of your belly. Also, abdominal wall tightening may optimize your result. Stretch marks to the level of your umbilicus will also be excised. I would highly recommend continued diet and exercise prior to any consideration for body contouring as getting down to your ideal weight prior to the procedure will certainly give you the best results. Also, a continued healthy and active lifestyle will be needed in order to maintain the benefits that the procedure has given to you.

You should consult with a plastic surgeon at anytime to go over options to assist you in deciding which procedure(s) would be right for you. I typically recommend a 6 week period of no strenuous activity/vigorous exercise along with an abdominal binder for the same time period. It usually takes 6-12 weeks for full healing and swelling to subside before results final. Best wishes!

Lewis Albert Andres, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

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.

Larry S. Nichter, MD, MS, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 154 reviews

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!

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,487 reviews

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
4.8 out of 5 stars 9 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.