Things Not to Do After a Tummy Tuck

Things Not to Do After a Tummy Tuck

Having kids and losing a significant amount of weight can result in loose, excess skin in the midsection despite achieving a leaner body.

Of course, this can affect your self-esteem negatively.

You may, therefore, want to get an abdominoplasty or a tummy tuck, as it is popularly known.

This surgery will certainly remove the loose skin, but it does not come with an easy or short recovery period.

As you recuperate, you want to avoid certain things to prevent complications later on. Here are some of those things.


As you get into the theatre room for your surgery, your surgeon will put you under anesthesia, and understandably so because going under the knife is painful.

Now, the thing is that even after the procedure, you will be a bit out of it.

With that in mind, driving in that state cannot be a good idea.

Driving is not recommended immediately after tummy tuck surgery; ensure you arrange for someone to drive you home post-surgery, as you will not be in a condition to drive yourself

For some time after your abdominoplasty, driving will be off-limits for you.

This is even after the anesthesia wears off. If you are on painkillers, you want to wait until you are done taking them or, better still, until your doctor clears you.

Salty Foods

A tummy tuck also requires you to alter your diet, albeit a little. This is particularly true for the first few days after the surgery.

After the procedure, you will experience some swelling, so indulging in salty foods will not do you any good.

Limit salt intake post-surgery to help manage swelling, but follow your surgeon’s dietary recommendations for specific guidance on duration and dietary adjustments.

Working Out

Granted, exercising is good, especially for maintaining your newfound lean figure but you do not want to go overboard right after your surgery. Avoid strenuous exercises and heavy lifting for a period recommended by your surgeon, typically 4-6 weeks, but gentle walking is encouraged to promote circulation.

The same applies to any strenuous activity or even aerobics.

During your recovery period, you can walk for a few hours every few hours, as this will help improve blood flow and ultimately accelerate the healing process.

Smoking and Drinking

Perhaps you were a smoker or alcohol drinker before your tummy tuck and you feel like you want to get back to it afterward.

Avoid smoking and drinking alcohol for at least 4-6 weeks post-surgery, or as advised by your surgeon, to facilitate proper healing and avoid complications. Smoking and drinking affect blood flow and this, in turn, can delay or tamper with the healing process.

When it comes to alcohol, you want to keep in mind that it can react with pain relievers.

It can do more, though. It also acts as a blood thinner, which can interfere with healing.

Remember that it can also dehydrate your body if you take too much without drinking water.

To be on the safe side, you want to wait for your surgeon to clear you before taking a bottle of beer or a glass of wine.

Tight Clothing

After a tummy tuck, clothing can be tricky. One of the reasons you probably had the surgery was so that you could fit into certain clothes.

Nonetheless, the swelling that happens after you go under the knife can make it hard for you to fit into the same clothes.

What you want to do, though, is avoid tight clothes immediately after your surgery, as they can irritate the incisions made on your tummy.

Wear loose, comfortable clothing to avoid irritation to the surgical site post-surgery, following your surgeon’s advice on the duration and type of clothing suitable for recovery.

There is an exception when constricting clothing, as your surgeon may recommend a compression garment for your midsection.

This is often the case when you get a tummy tuck, along with liposuction, as these procedures help reshape your abdominal area.

Final Thoughts

A tummy tuck is not as easy as getting the surgery done and doing your daily activities as usual.

As you can see, some things must be avoided lest you encounter complications with your recovery.

Adhering to post-operative guidelines, including avoiding the activities mentioned, supports a smoother recovery process, but consult your surgeon for personalized advice.

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Current Version
April 1, 2024
Updated By
Franco Cuevas, MD
November 14, 2021
Written By
Shubham Grover

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