One of the things that patients tend to be most concerned about if they are considering a tummy tuck is the scarring left behind afterwards. Although it is important to have realistic expectations about what to expect – the incision is significant so scarring is unavoidable – there are steps you can take to help your scar heal and fade.
Minimise tummy tuck scarring: get up and about as soon as you can
There is a wealth of data that supports how important it is to get mobile again as quickly as you can. Walking around helps the blood flow to the affected area which is a great help when healing, and it also helps reduce swelling. As soon as you feel you can take these steps, they are the first steps on the road to recovery.
Minimise tummy tuck scarring: eat and drink well, taking in plenty of vitamins
Following a healthy, balanced diet is recommended for everyone but it is particularly important when your body is recovering from a significant trauma such as a large operation. Ensuring you have plenty and fruit and vegetables is ideal, and you should endeavour to drink lots of water.
Minimise tummy tuck scarring: apply vitamin E to the scar
There is evidence to suggest that vitamin E helps boost collagen production in the skin (and it also helps keep the area moisturised) so therefore can be helpful in helping the healing process. Try to weave this into your recovery routine as applying daily for a few months is believed to be helpful.
Minimise tummy tuck scarring: try to avoid smoking for as long as possible
Ideally, the best way to heal and to remain healthy after any procedures is not to smoke, but for those who wish to continue smoking or who are not able to consider quitting, refraining for at least six weeks is advised to give your body the best chance of healing effectively.
Minimise tummy tuck scarring: avoid the sun
Keeping your scar out of the sunshine is important for the first year as the scar tissue is forming and can be negatively affected by the sun’s UV rays. Although applying sun cream would seem sensible, this is not advised for the first 12 months either. Once you have passed this milestone, there are scar-specific sun creams that can be purchased, and if you can’t get hold of one of these, ensure you’re using SPF30 or above around the area of the scar.
For more advice on tummy tuck scarring, call 01926 436341 to arrange a consultation at Mr Alan Park’s Warwickshire cosmetic surgery clinic.