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The middle-aged often share an embarrassing problem: a loose or sagging belly.

This comes for a number of reasons, some of them your fault and others not so much. Prior surgeries and aging are two things that you can’t do much about. Our abs just don’t look as good when we get older and if we’ve had other procedures done, such as surgeries on the prostate, stomach or intestine.

Other factors are probably our fault. Over time, we have spurts of good health habits and spurts of not so good health habits. Our weight fluctuates, as does our waist line. This fluctuation can also be caused by more serious health issues, such as hormonal imbalance. Whatever the cause, these fluctuations can make our abdomen look flabby and unattractive.

Pregnancy is another thing that can cause the stomach to look less attractive. Most mothers would say it was worth the sacrifice, of course.

The problem with a sagging belly is that it isn’t always a problem solved by simply losing weight. Obesity, for example, causes the skin to lose elasticity, which means that even when you lose weight, the skin will still look different on your body.

But you don’t have to live with an unsightly belly. You can regain confidence at the swimming pool and self-confidence in general.

Abdominoplasty, most commonly called a tummy tuck, is a common procedure that men and women utilize to regain a more flattering appearance. The procedure removes excess fat and skin, and often restores weakened and separated muscles. The surgery involves a number of incisions that allow the doctor to restructure the skin.

This procedure isn’t for everyone, however. You should be physically healthy and maintain a stable weight, and not be a smoker. Emotional readiness is important as well. You should have realistic expectations, and make sure you feel well-informed by the surgeon. Lastly, make sure you are doing this for the right reasons. Do it for yourself, and not for others.

Remember that while a tummy tuck can be awesome for your appearance and your sense of wellbeing, it isn’t meant to be a primary substitute for weight loss efforts. That is something that diet and exercise can fix!