It’s that stubborn belly that appeared after your weight loss or after your pregnancies—and it just will not budge. You may have considered tummy tucks for years but instead tried to fix it yourself. You’ve dieted. You’ve exercised. You’ve dieted and exercised. Yet there it still sits, resistant to your best efforts. A tummy tuck can help eradicate the extra skin and tissue. Even a mini tummy tuck can get you your desired results. But what are the differences between a full tummy tuck vs a mini tummy tuck? And which one will work best for your particular “pooch”? Let’s get the skinny…..
What is a Full Tummy Tuck Procedure?
A full tummy tuck creates a flatter belly by addressing the entire abdomen, from right below the rib cage to the pubic area. A board certified surgeon will perform two incisions—one between the pubic area and the belly button and one above the belly button. They will remove excess tissue and skin, massage the muscles to shape them, and then stretch the skin tight over the abdomen for a more pleasing contour. Many times they will also move the belly button up higher or reshape it.
What is a Mini Tummy Tuck Procedure?
A mini tummy tuck is very similar to the full tummy tuck. The difference is that a surgeon will make only one incision—the one below the belly button. That is the only area that is addressed with a mini tummy tuck. Again, loose skin and tissue will be removed, the underlying muscle will be massaged and shaped, and the skin will be pulled tighter over that area.
So Which One Works for Me?
From those descriptions, you may already be thinking that you’d prefer one procedure over the other. If you’re still undecided, you might ask yourself if you only have a small area below the belly button where unwanted skinsoccurs. Since mini tummy tucks are less invasive, they have less scarring and a quicker recovery time. They are just as effective for that type of “pooch.” If they can achieve your goals, then it makes sense to go that route. You’ll be able to enjoy a flatter stomach that wows in bathing suits and more fitted clothing—and the confidence that comes with it.
If, however, you find that the extra skin and tissue is also above the belly button, you’ll benefit from a full tummy tuck. Even though this procedure requires more incisions and downtime, it will give you the final results you desire, and the overall recovery time is not very long.
Some Important Considerations
Whether you opt for the full or the mini, it’s important to note that there are some restrictions—and also some ways to optimize your results. If you are considering having children after this procedure, you’ll want to wait to have it done until you have finished having children; pregnancies can alter the outcome. Similarly, poor eating and exercise can undo the effects of the surgery so you’ll need to continue a healthy lifestyle with good food habits and regular movement to ensure that your belly stays flat.
Both the mini tummy tuck and the full tummy tuck can also be done in concert with other procedures to decrease overall surgery time, gain savings, and reduce recovery time. Many times at the Advanced Center for Plastic Surgery we pair a tummy tuck with several other surgical procedures in our popular Mommy Makeover. This procedure helps moms regain their pre-pregnancy bodies with breast lifts, enhancements, and more. If you have stretch marks, they can be addressed through the Mommy Makeover since a tummy tuck does not always fix them (unless the marks are on the skin being removed). You can pair a tummy tuck with liposuction too. Fat is not removed during a tummy tuck, so this procedure will remove excess fat in the belly area before you tighten the skin again.
Love Your Belly
Whether mini or full, tummy tucks are a simple, straightforward, and safe procedure that can give you the confidence to wear whatever you want. At the Advanced Center for Plastic Surgery, we have seen the transformations. The mini and full tummy tuck before and after photos are life-changing, and it is a privilege to help our patients make this change. If you’d like to schedule a free consultation, we would be happy to help you decide if a mini or full tummy tuck is the best option for you. We want you to love your tummy again!