If you are considering gastric sleeve surgery or have recently undergone gastric sleeve in Toronto, you’re likely pretty excited by all the wonderful health benefits coming your way! However, you may have also started thinking about some of the concerns associated with the drastic weight loss accompanying the surgery. One of the most common questions we hear from prospective and new patients is whether or not they will have excess skin after gastric sleeve surgery. Let’s take a closer look!
While not everyone experiences excess skin after weight loss surgery, this phenomenon is pretty common. Some degree of loose skin will be somewhat inevitable whenever you lose a significant amount of weight, whether due to bariatric surgery or other methods. The degree to which you experience excess skin will depend on a few contributing factors, such as your genetics, age, gender, skin elasticity, and amount of weight loss. With this said, you shouldn’t let the worry of excess skin hinder your decision to pursue weight loss surgery, as the benefits far outweigh this possibility.
Tips to Help the Appearance of Excess Skin
It’s important to remember that gastric sleeve is not a cosmetic procedure and that overall health improvement is the primary goal. It takes hard work and dedication after surgery to successfully lose weight long-term, and this is something you should be proud of and celebrate! If excess skin poses a concern for you, surgical intervention is the only way to correct it. However, you can do a few things to improve the appearance of loose skin after a gastric sleeve procedure.
Exercising after gastric sleeve surgery is one of the key components to weight loss success; in fact, aside from changes in diet, exercise is the most important factor for total, sustained weight loss. But did you know that exercise can also help reduce the appearance of loose skin? Weight training will not get rid of excess skin, but by improving your muscle tone you can replace lost fat with muscle mass which can lessen the appearance of loose skin.
Collagen and elastin play a big part in your skin’s elasticity. As you age, you naturally lose collagen and elastin; however, lifestyle factors also impact how much collagen and elastin you have in your skin. Taking good care of your skin and eliminating unhealthy lifestyle habits such as smoking and consuming excess alcohol can help the elastic quality of your skin while you lose weight and may improve the overall appearance of loose skin. Eating a healthy diet full of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean protein can work to preserve the collagen in your skin. Regularly applying SPF can also help prevent collagen breakdown.
Solutions to Get Rid of Excess Skin
As mentioned, cosmetic surgery is the only way to remove excess skin. While the above tips may help the appearance of loose skin, they cannot reverse it. Many of our patients elect to have body contouring procedures performed at our sister cosmetic surgery clinic, Clinic 360. It’s best to consider cosmetic surgery when you’re as close to your ideal weight as possible and your weight has stabilized. This is typically about 9-18 months after your gastric sleeve surgery.
Common Cosmetic Procedures for Gastric Sleeve Patients
Tummy Tuck: A tummy tuck removes loose skin and fat while tightening the underlying abdominal muscles. A scar will remain along the bikini line; however, a flatter, more contoured midsection is the result.
Arm Lift: An arm lift is a cosmetic procedure in which excess skin and tissue along the underside of the arm are removed. A scar will remain from the elbow upwards to the armpit. The result is slimmer upper arms.
Thigh Lift: A thighplasty is a cosmetic surgery in which loose tissues, including the skin, are excised to provide patients with slender thighs.
Breast Lift: Weight loss can cause the breasts to decrease in cup size and sag down. A breast lift, also known as a mastopexy, will remove the excess skin, and tighten the breasts up to a more suitable position. A breast lift can also be combined with a breast augmentation for additional volume.
The benefits to your overall health from bariatric surgery can be life-changing; you shouldn’t let the possibility of excess skin deter you from reaching your weight loss and health goals. If loose skin is a concern, there are options to correct it with some of Toronto’s expert body contouring plastic surgeons.To learn more about bariatric surgery and how we can assist you in reaching your weight loss goals, book a free consultation today with our highly experienced Toronto gastric sleeve surgery specialists.