Summary: You could be forgiving for wondering if there is a painless tummy tuck procedure out there. Tummy tucks do have a certain reputation for post-operative discomfort. The problem is that the “painless” tummy tuck alternatives don’t seem to deliver results. For most patients, that’s pretty frustrating. However, there are certainly some options that are worth discussing.
Can You Have a Painless Tummy Tuck in Real Life?
If you’re looking for a painless tummy tuck, you might be out of luck. There are plenty of gimmicks out there—or tricks—that seem to promise you results without any type of discomfort. And that seems appealing because what you want isn’t necessarily unreasonable.
You want to look great. You want to look as fit as you feel. You want your tummy to be flat—even more so if you’ve been constantly committed to a healthy lifestyle for quite some time. These are not unreasonable desires. Unfortunately, the notion that you could achieve these desires with little discomfort is unrealistic.
That’s why you need to be on the lookout for scams—for products that are too good to be true. Is there a such thing as a painless tummy tuck? Not really. Although—the answer isn’t quite that simple. Let me walk you through what I mean by that.
What Does a Tummy Tuck Do?
In order to fully investigate this notion of a painless tummy tuck, we should take a minute and look at what a tummy tuck actually does. According to the website of Milwaukee area plastic surgeon Dr. Mark Bosbous, a tummy tuck is designed to essentially eliminate excess skin.
That’s important because your body isn’t necessarily very good at dealing with excess skin on its own. It’s not like fat, which you can burn with a little bit of exertion and determination. Once excess skin develops, it’s usually there to stay. And it can accrue for any number of reasons, especially around the belly:
- Pregnancy and childbirth
- Weight loss or weight gain
- Natural aging processes
- Genetics and your natural predisposition
When this excess skin forms around the tummy, you might want to get rid of it (in some cases, you might even confuse excess skin for fat—a plastic surgeon will definitely know the difference). There’s no physiological benefit of disadvantage to this excess skin (generally speaking), so your body doesn’t really care about it.
However, patients are sometimes concerned with the aesthetics of this excess skin—and, therefore, several products have been introduced that claim to get rid of it.
How to Make Your Tummy Look Firmer
If you want your belly to look a little bit firmer that might involve eliminating excess skin. There’s really only one real way to do that—the surgical procedure known as a tummy tuck. Generally, tummy tucks have proven themselves to be effective and satisfying. Patients tend to love the results. However, the recovery period for this procedure is notoriously uncomfortable.
There are two “alternatives” to tummy tuck that are often suggested:
- Laser procedures: There are plenty of laser procedures that suggest they have the ability to “tighten” skin. In some ways, this makes sense. Certain laser procedures can do this. However, these laser systems tend to produce very subtle results. They just can’t compete with what you can accomplish with a tummy tuck surgery (meaning many people who seek out these laser systems as a tummy tuck alternative end up quite disappointed).
- Wraps: You see these all over the place: some kind of plastic wrapping you put around your abdomen. I’ll be really to the point with these: for 99% of people, they won’t work. If you really want results, just ignore these products.
Is That the End for Painless Tummy Tucks?
Just because those “alternative” procedures for tummy tucks don’t actually work doesn’t mean that the painless tummy tuck is dead. Indeed, surgeons have developed several ways of diminishing the discomfort associated with tummy tucks. There are two major techniques:
- A pain pump: A so-called “pain pump” is essentially a pump left in place in the body after surgery. This pump slowly administers a topical anesthetic into the affected area, diminishing discomfort.
- An injection: There are a few special topical anesthetic injections that are so powerful the effects last for days. These are sometimes used for tummy tuck patients in order to strongly diminish the discomfort felt in the first few days after surgery.
To be sure, neither of these techniques will make a tummy tuck completely painless. But they can diminish the discomfort that patients feel.
Know What You’re In For
That’s why almost all surgeons will discuss that discomfort—and how to handle it appropriately—during their consultations with patients. The fact of the matter is that most tummy tuck patients end up feeling as though the procedure was worth that discomfort, and they also tend to love the results. So if you want to eliminate unwanted excess skin from around your belly, a tummy tuck—not the alternatives—might be the best way to go.