Patients should avoid strenuous activities for at least six weeks after having tummy tuck surgery, explains WebMD. The site also suggests taking at least one month off work to ensure proper recovery.
After a tummy tuck, the abdominal incision is stitched and wrapped with a firm elastic band, and the surgeon may place small tubes along the incision to drain blood and other fluids, notes Mayo Clinic. During the recovery period, patients must carefully follow the doctor's instructions on caring for the incision and drainage tube areas in order to minimize pain and prevent reopening of the wound. Doctors often instruct patients on the proper way to position the body when lying down, which may involve keeping the upper body slightly elevated for the first few days after surgery.
For the first three months, patients should avoid bending the waist too quickly or getting into any position that strains the incision line, according to Mayo Clinic. Doctors often prescribe medication to help minimize pain and swelling in the abdominal area. An antibiotic may also be prescribed in order to prevent infection, and these are normally taken for up to 10 days after surgery. Surgeons also schedule multiple post-surgical visits to ensure the incision is healing properly.