Plastic surgery has become a massive industry over the last decade. And while the clients of this industry are mostly women, the majority of the surgeons in the industry are men!
Dr. Rose Makerewich is a leading plastic surgeon at the SixSurgery Clinic in Toronto, and she finds that her experience as a woman (and new mom) has allowed her to better connect with patients on their surgical journeys. As a new mom, Dr. Rose finds she is especially able to provide relevant insight to her patients undergoing the Mommy Makeover procedure.
What is a Mommy Makeover?
A Mommy Makeover is a combination of surgical procedures selected to help reverse pregnancy-related changes. Common procedures considered in a Mommy Makeover are breast rejuvenation procedures to restore breast shape and perkiness, and abdominal rejuvenation procedures to re-create a flat tummy and address muscle separation.
What is important to understand is that a “Mommy Makeover” is a concept, it is not a specific set of procedures. The general idea is to address changes that happen to a woman’s body during pregnancy and breast feeding but because each woman’s pregnancy journey is unique, and every woman’s body is unique, the specific set of surgeries that is best for you needs to be personally tailored. You want to work with your surgeon to develop your surgical plan to address the areas of your body that you are looking to rejuvenate.
Why do you feel so connected to Mommy Makeover patients?
As mothers we give so deeply in every possible way, and I find a Mommy Makeover to be a special opportunity for a mother to switch gears and take some time to give back to herself. It is extremely gratifying as a surgeon to be involved in a Mommy Makeover because I find it to be as emotionally rejuvenating for women as it is physically.
Why do some women choose to have a Mommy Makeover?
Women consider surgical procedures to address post pregnancy changes for a variety of reasons. Some women are bothered by loose skin and just want to feel more comfortable in their clothing. Other women are hoping to restore their body to a pre-pregnancy state that they recognize and regain physical confidence. Some women wish to remove C-section scars which may have healed suboptimally, or with sensitivity. Others want to improve core strength with repair of abdominal muscle separation. Depending on the amount of weight gained and fluid retained during pregnancy, there can be issues with excess skin in many areas including the arms and thighs, and so some women include procedures like an arm lift or thigh lift in their Mommy Makeover to address this. Some women are interested in labial rejuvenation. Again, the experience of pregnancy is so varied and unique!
Why surgery? Can’t they achieve the same thing with diet and exercise?
Following pregnancy, there are three things that can make a huge difference in helping your body return to its pre-pregnancy state: exercise, healthy diet, and most importantly, time! But there are some things that no amount of exercise and diet can change. Loose abdominal skin from expansion during pregnancy that does not correct with time can only be addressed with surgical removal. Similarly, increased ptosis (or drooping) of breast tissue with deflation after breastfeeding can only be addressed with removal of this excess skin with a breast lift. Skin is not a muscle – it can’t be exercised! Scars from C-sections and stretch marks in the lower abdomen can also only be addressed with surgical excision.
Abdominal muscle separation can be corrected to some degree with exercise, but a significant rectus diastasis is more effectively addressed with surgical repair.
How have you handled being a new mom, and a successful plastic surgeon?
I love being a Mom! I think some new chamber of my heart that isn’t described in medical textbooks opened up when I had my sons. And if anything, being a mom has made me more ambitious in my career. Now more than ever, I believe that I can do anything! There have been dark times no doubt, but babies are worth it.
Loving my post baby body has been a journey too. I have had the fortune of meeting so many women in my profession. Working with women and having the privilege of understanding the intimate emotional journey that women go through postpartum has normalized these changes and provided me with an honest perspective. I have been left with a greater appreciation for how incredible the female body is!
If I do ever want to make a physical change with surgery, I have peace of mind in knowing that there are safe surgical options available, and I know exactly what to expect!
For more information about Dr. Rose Makerewich, you can check out RealDrSix on Instagram, where she and her colleagues at the SixSurgery Clinic discuss realistic expectations, accepting perceived flaws (like stretch marks and cellulite) and give in-depth explanations of all the procedures they offer!