How long is the recovery for tummy tuck surgery?

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Your abdomen will naturally be swollen for the first few days, but medication will control the pain. Depending on the extent of your surgery, you may be released within a few hours or you may have to remain hospitalised for a couple of days.

Your botonics surgeon will give you instructions for showering and caring for your dressings and any temporary drains that may be in place. Though you may not be able to stand up straight immediately, you should start walking about as soon as possible.

All stitches will need to be removed at different stages. A temporary support garment may replace the dressing on your incision.

It may be weeks or months before you feel like yourself again. Those who start out in top physical condition with strong abdominal muscles will recover much faster. Some return to work after only two weeks, while others take three or four weeks to recuperate.

Exercise will help you heal more quickly. Even people who never normally exercise should begin an exercise programme to reduce swelling, tone muscles and lower the chance of blood clots. Vigorous exercise, however, should be avoided until you can do it comfortably.

Your scars may actually appear to worsen during the first two to three months. This is normal. Expect it to take from nine months to a year before the scars flatten out and lighten in colour. They will never disappear completely but abdominal scars will not show under most clothing, even under bathing suits.

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