Many people undergo abdominoplasty or tummy tuck procedure to achieve a slimmer, fitter waistline. It is the surgical removal of excess skin and fat and tightening of the underlying abdominal muscles. It is designed to tone your stomach region and enhance its shape when diet programs and exercise have failed to work.
Following surgery, it is vital to ensure that your core is working properly. Thus, cosmetic surgeons recommend physical therapy before and after the procedure. It can teach your abdominal muscles how to work correctly again, and prevent issues like back, hip, and pelvis pain. It can also help you achieve optimal results and go back to your routine activities whether it’s sport, work, or recreation in a timely manner.
First 24 hours
Patients spend the first 24 hours in the hospital following surgery in order to optimize comfort levels. Post-surgical instructions are also crucial to help reduce complications. During the first 24 hours, physiotherapy is applied to help the patient to sit up on their own and bring themselves to a standing position. Achieving these can lay the groundwork for later exercise.
Week 1 to 2
Patients are instructed to wear a compression garment from 4 to 6 weeks after surgery to reduce swelling and maximize the tummy tuck results. Thus, mobility during this time will be limited. Once the soreness has faded, light activity may begin. Patients can start by walking short distances while maintaining a flexed posture at the hips. This is to protect the abdominal muscles and fascia repair from being pulled. You can return to your work as long as it is not physically demanding.
Week 3 to 4
As the body heals and swelling reduces, the patient may resume light exercises such as walking and recumbent cycling. Vigorous exercises should be avoided, especially workouts that target the abdominal wall like sit-ups. Patients are only allowed to lift light weights to avoid aggravating the incision area. They can add more weight and repetitions to their fitness routine over time.
Week 6 to 8
It is expected that nearly 90% of the muscle groups are healed by this time. Aerobic exercises such as running, moderate swimming, and spin class are generally cleared. A patient will still need to go to a Dubai physiotherapy clinic to continue upper body and leg exercises and range of motion exercises to strengthen the body. Abdominal-specific exercises are still discouraged as it may lead to swelling.
Week 8 and beyond
Even if you feel well enough to resume your daily activities, it doesn’t mean you should. Only your surgeon can confirm whether the site is 100% healed. Be patient to work your abdominal muscles as your body heals. Doing it to soon may stretch out the surgical site and alter the tummy tuck results. Stick to the physical therapy guidelines prepared for you by your therapist.
A tummy tuck can be a life-changing decision. Thus, you need physiotherapy before and after the procedure to help achieve a toned physique and celebrate your new body. Move in the right direction following a tummy tuck with the help of Scandinavian Physiotherapy Center. Book an appointment today by calling +971 4 551 6126!