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The Surprising Reasons that Can Stop You from Achieving a Flat Tummy

diastasis recti

diastasis recti

Fitness magazines tell you that a flat tummy is always possible. Buy the magazine, do a few exercises, and you’ll have a tight, flat stomach, probably with a six-pack. Reality tells many of our patients a different story. They have cut calories, lost weight, and exercised religiously, but a flat tummy continues to elude them. Many wonder what they are doing wrong.

It is easy to get discouraged when you’re working hard and not seeing results, but don’t give up yet. Call Dr. Ali Sajjadian, a top plastic surgeon in Newport Beach, CA to discuss your options for body contouring in Newport Beach, CA. There may be underlying reasons that are keeping you from your tummy goals, and once we find and correct them, success is more achievable. We’ve helped countless patients discover a flat tummy through plastic surgery. We would love to help you.

Diet and Weight Loss Aren’t Always Enough

The standard advice for improving the body is always the same: diet and exercise. While these two steps are essential for health and lifestyle, they don’t always produce the desired aesthetic results. Plain and simple, diet and exercise aren’t always enough to have sexy curves and a flat tummy, especially if you have hormones and genetics fighting against you.

We’re not suggesting that diet and exercise aren’t necessary. Both are essential to good health and optimal appearance. They are also some of the most effective options for natural weight loss available. Diet and exercise are essential, but they are only part of the puzzle.

If you’re struggling to achieve your ideal abdominal appearance, you’re not alone, and you may be doing everything right. Factors outside of your control could cause stubborn rolls and bulges in your tummy area. If you are pregnant, have given birth and over the age of 35, you could have a condition known as diastasis recti.

What is Diastasis Recti?

Diastasis recti (abdominal separation) is a medical condition in which the muscles of the abdomen separate. The abdominal muscles are two paired muscles that run vertically through the abdominal area. These muscles are normally positioned closely together, with minimal space in between.

The condition is quite common during pregnancy, with around two-thirds of women experiencing the condition during gestation. It can also occur in men or women that are not pregnant, although this is far less common.

One symptom of diastasis recti is an abdominal pooch, a condition where your belly becomes very prominent or “sticks out” resulting in the unflattering mommy pooch or mommy belly.

Other symptoms such as pelvic floor and abdominal weakness are common with diastasis recti. Urinary and rectal incompetence may occur. The condition can also cause abdominal and back pain and hernias.

How Common is Diastasis Recti?

Diastasis recti is very common. One study found that up to 60% of pregnant women are affected by the condition. It often resolves after pregnancy, but many women are still affected months, or years, after delivery.

There is some debate about the risk factors for diastasis recti. They may include age, number of pregnancies, and BMI. To fully understand the risk factors behind this condition, more research is needed

Diastasis Recti Treatment

Diastasis recti is treatable, even if you’ve had it for many years. The first line of treatment is often specialized abdominal exercise, under the supervision of a trained healthcare provider. Patients need to be careful to avoid further separation. Some exercises, including traditional abdominal exercises like crunches, can cause damage in patients with diastasis recti. Work with your doctor or physical therapist to help strengthen and tighten your core muscles using gentle and safe exercise options.

Many patients with diastasis recti will require abdominoplasty to repair the separation. Abdominoplasty, also known as a tummy tuck, can repair abdominal muscle separation. In addition to removing fat and excess skin, a tummy tuck also strengthens and tightens the abdominal muscles. They are stitched back together, strengthening the weak central ridge. These stitches remain in place after a tummy tuck, acting as an internal girdle and helping the abdomen to maintain its new, flattened appearance.

Stubborn Belly Fat

Another detractor from a tight, flat tummy is stubborn belly fat. Everyone has those areas where they easily gain weight, and for many of our patients, the abdomen is a trouble spot. This stubborn fat can be difficult to lose and often occurs in patients that are at a healthy weight.

Stubborn fat can be resistant to traditional fat loss methods and may require surgical intervention. Dr. Sajjadian often recommends liposuction to patients that struggle with isolated pockets of unwanted fat. Abdominal liposuction can effectively remove this fat, often changing the contours of the body permanently.

Liposuction for Stubborn Fat

Commonly considered a weight loss treatment, liposuction is one of the misunderstood plastic surgery treatments we offer. In reality, liposuction isn’t for weight loss. It is a powerful body contouring option that removes fat to sculpt and shape areas of the body. For full body weight loss, choose diet and exercise, but for a trouble spot, liposuction is key.

Liposuction can be performed on almost any area of the body, including the abdomen. If you’re struggling with unwanted belly fat, come in for a liposuction consultation and explore your options with triple board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Sajjadian.

We offer three different types of liposuction: tumescent liposuction, power-assisted liposuction (PAL), and ultrasonic liposuction. Dr. Sajjadian will recommend one of these options during your consultation and will explain why this type of liposuction is an effective treatment option.

Although there are slight variations in the procedure between each type of liposuction, the basics of the treatment are always similar. Liposuction begins with a small incision, just large enough for a metal tube, called a cannula, to fit through. The cannula is inserted, and suction is applied to remove fat cells from the body.

Liposuction involves much more than fat removal. The fat is strategically removed to create better contours and to enhance the body’s shape. Dr. Sajjadian has performed countless liposuction procedures throughout his career and is one of the best trained, most experienced plastic surgeons in his area of expertise.

Do Fat Cells Regenerate After Removal?

Liposuction offers near-permanent results for many of our patients. In adulthood, fat cells grow and shrink in size, but remain fairly stable in number. When you gain weight, the many fat cells in your body swell and grow. Likewise, when weight decreases, the fat cells shrink.

Unlike weight loss that shrinks fat cells, liposuction removes them, decreasing their overall number in the body. The fat cells that remain can still grow if you gain weight, but new fat cells are unlikely. Patients that remain at a stable weight will typically enjoy a lifelong improvement in the areas treated after liposuction.

Do I Need Liposuction?

If you’re close to your ideal weight, but can’t seem to shake that abdominal bulge, come see Dr. Sajjadian and ask about liposuction. This treatment is effective for most patients.

If you’re trying to lose weight, keep working at it and see us when you’re close to your ideal. Patients achieve better results when liposuction is used for body sculpting instead of weight loss.

Loose Abdominal Skin

The skin is elastic, but it only stretches and contracts so much. After pregnancy or massive weight loss, loose, excess skin may remain in the abdominal area and other areas where weight loss has occurred. This extra skin hangs around, creating rolls and hiding your flat tummy. All the crunches in the world won’t bring your six pack out of hiding if you have loose skin covering it up.

Diet and exercise do nothing to shrink skin. Surgical removal of this excess skin is one of the most effective ways to address the problem. Come in for a consultation, and we’ll explore your options for tightening excess abdominal skin.

  • Post-Bariatric Surgery in Newport Beach, CA- Losing a massive amount of weight, as often occurs after bariatric surgery, leaves the body with a lot of excess skin. Post-weight loss body contouring helps patients to shed this extra skin and rediscover confidence in their body’s appearance. Dr. Sajjadian combines body contouring treatments to reshape areas that are most impacted by the weight loss. Common abdominal procedures include liposuction and tummy tuck. Don’t stop your weight loss journey with weight loss, shape and contour your body with post-bariatric body contouring to achieve the results you’re dreaming of.
  • Tummy Tuck- If your excess skin is concentrated in the abdominal area, a tummy tuck is the solution. This procedure tightens abdominal muscles and removes excess fat and skin. A tummy tuck is one of the most requested procedures from our mommy makeover It is a highly restorative option for post-pregnancy abdominal changes.
  • Non-Surgical Skin Tightening- Serious excess skin needs a serious solution, usually one of our surgical procedures. However, it doesn’t take a lot of extra skin to affect abdominal appearance. Even a minor amount of lost elasticity can affect the shape and tightness of the abdomen. Our non-surgical body contouring procedures use the powerful In-Mode laser to tighten skin and improve elasticity. We offer Forma and Forma Plus, as well as Body FX. A series of treatments is needed to achieve optimal results.

Each treatment offers benefits. A consultation with Dr. Sajjadian is key to finding your best fit. Let’s explore your options together!

Maintaining Your Flat Tummy After Plastic Surgery

After you’ve achieved flat tummy perfection through liposuction, a tummy tuck, or one of our non-surgical treatment offerings, maintain your new look. The treatments we offer are highly effective and long-lasting. They require minimal maintenance after surgery.

Our biggest tip is to stay at a stable weight. Weight gain and loss affects bodily curves and contours, and not always in a good way. Increases or decreases of more than a couple pounds could negatively affect your body contouring results.  Maintaining weight may be easier than you think. Many patients find that plastic surgery is highly motivating. They see their new look and feel inspired to work harder toward fitness goals.

Pregnancy is another no-no if you want your results to last. We typically recommend that patients schedule their abdominal shaping treatments after pregnancy. If you’re hoping for another baby in the future, it may be best to wait for liposuction or tummy tuck surgery in Southern California. Although pregnancy is perfectly safe after these procedures, it does change the body, often causing stubborn fat and loose skin to reoccur.

I’ve Done My Best, but I’m Not Seeing Results

Tummy troubles are one of the most common aesthetic body complaints we hear, but luckily, these are easily treated with plastic surgery.

Dr. Sajjadian is a multi-awarded, triple board certified plastic surgeon who serves the Newport Beach and surrounding Orange County areas. Dr. Sajjadian specializes in creating advanced techniques in aesthetic procedures for the nose, face, breast, and body. Dr. Sajjadian’s reputation as an excellent plastic surgeon is evidenced by his numerous glowing reviews from patients.

If you’ve tried changing your diet and tried doing exercise, but still have a tummy pooch, a consultation with Dr. Sajjadian can help you understand the hidden issues that are keeping you from a flat tummy. Call us at 949-515-0550 today and get the figure you deserve.