Body Image and Issues after Weight Loss - Skin removal not an option

View Full Version : Skin removal not an option

11-18-2012, 03:34 PM
So for those of us who have been overweight for a while and are now losing... If skin removal is not an option for you for whatever reason what do you plan to do to avoid/deal with all that saggy skin?

11-18-2012, 03:40 PM
I have no idea, I'd like to hear some though! Flabby/loose skin is a huge fear of mine! But I've heard your skin shrinks back over time?

11-18-2012, 03:43 PM
This (link below) is for loose skin from extreme weight loss or pregnancy. No surgery with this!! I would totally do this but I need a tummy tuck because when I was pregnant, not only did it leave me with loose skin but my muscles never closed up and I have multiple hernias.

11-18-2012, 03:45 PM
I'm beyond paranoid about this because w/o weightloss surgery, sask health is wishy washy on covering panniculectomies. I am trying to be proactive, using bio oil, dry brushing, anti aging cream on my face, and eating lots of fish and berries. Some of it may be quackery, but I'm an optimist!

I hear if you tone up as much as possible it helps too. At the end of the day, I might just have to buy stock in spanx!!!!

11-18-2012, 03:53 PM
I have a lot of loose skin, much worse than the pictures in the example given.Loose skin is much different than sagging skin, I am not going to have a tummy tuck because of other health issues. If it wasn't for that I would definitely have surgery. In the meantime I just cover it up with clothing.and is not too bad looking unless I take my clothes off.

11-18-2012, 04:09 PM
I have saggy skin on my stomache and as much as I want a tummy tuck, I can think of a million other things that money could be put to better use for. I've pretty much just accepted how my stomache looks, and if it tightenes up over the years, great...if not...just keep using spandex...:)

11-18-2012, 05:14 PM
I'm just noticing some loose skin on my stomach and thighs right now, it sucks. I know I have to really work at weight training now if I really want to see a difference. I still have a surprising amount of fat to lose so I'm not sure how bad it's going to get.

Arctic Mama
11-18-2012, 05:17 PM
Well I just plan on dealing with it. Thus far, I have very little loose skin that isn't tolerable - some on the insides of my thighs, a saggin and loose belly from fat plus babies, a little underarm, but truly nothing that impacts my health or quality of life in an appreciable way beyond silly vanity. I am nowhere near done having children unless some dramatic changes, so I cannot have skin removal surgery (even if I wanted it, I'm not sure I do) on my abdomen until after children. Thus, I exercise, nourish my body as well as I can, and take simple steps to promote skin elasticity and health. Skin brushing can help somewhat, too.

But honestly, I don't stress about it. I'm not getting yeast infections in skin folds or having mobility issues from it, so it's kind of a no-brainer not to make a problem where one doesn't really exist. Loose skin is only noticeable when scrutinized, my obesity was a far greater health threat that a little sagging skin! If I was having bacterial issues with it the discussion would be different, but short of that it's really just a matter of telling my ego to stuff it, and that I look way hotter 100 pounds smaller with sagging skin than I did with it stretched taut and obese!

11-18-2012, 05:26 PM
I'm just dealing with mine. I have a lot on my stomach, inner thighs and a little on my upper arms. My stomach is where I have most of my problems, but I don't have so much loose skin that it's a huge issue. I just have to wear compression pants to exercise when I'm doing high impact cardio to hold everything in....

It's annoying, but I feel I'm much better off as I am now. I can do so much more physically that it's really hard to be concerned about loose skin when the alternative is not being strong and fit!

11-18-2012, 06:52 PM
I will say, I can't afford surgery nor do I want to weigh in the health risks of getting surgery; however, being a single, young female, I often worry that my obviously once fat body will be a major turn off to the opposite sex. I don't know if I'll ever be satisfied with my body, but it's better than being fat so I guess I'll just have to deal with it.

11-18-2012, 07:09 PM
however, being a single, young female, I often worry that my obviously once fat body will be a major turn off to the opposite sex.

I worry about that sometimes too, and there are always exceptions but mainly, it won't...My arms have loose skin, same with my thighs, stomache, and no one has ever refused to go out with me because of those issues, nor refused to see me again, once they've seen said issues...xD

Besides, if you happen to come across someone who is superficial enough for it to even be an issue, not worth it...

11-18-2012, 07:39 PM
Even though I've "only" lost about 100 lbs (and still have more than another 100 to go) I didn't think I'd be dealing with this issue until much further down the road, and I also didn't think that I'd find loose skin any worse than tight skin full of fat.

As it turns out, I've already got quite a bit of "bat wing" and when I first noticed, I was horrified and transfixed - actually pushing the flap of skin to watch it swing back and forth. Hubby walked in on this and started laughing, which started me laughing (and we both have always found laughter very sexy so..... I'll leave the rest to your imaginations).

At any rate, I now sometimes joke that by the time I get to goal, I'm going to be built like a flying squirrel (this actually came up in conversation with my younger sister today and we laughed so hard it brought tears to my eyes).

Mostly I'm choosing to believe that the flying squirrel look is quite sexy on me (and when and if time comes that I can't convince myself of this, maybe I"ll consider investing in a whole lot of Spanx and other elastic underclothing).

I've always believed that the brain is the sexiest part of a person, and that the brain can make anything sexy (even the body of a person who resembles a ginormous, bald, flying squirrel).

If I can convince hubby and myself, I don't really care who else disagrees.

P.S. and possibly TMI:

Hubby shouldn't be too hard to convince, he already tells me that his "favorite breast" is my right one - the one scarred by a lumpectomy (turned out the tumor was scar tissue from an old car/seatbelt accident not cancer). The "cancer scare" came just days before our wedding, and I had the lump removed soon after, leaving my breast looking mostly normal except for when I lay on my back (and then it resembles a volcano, the nipple settling into a golf-ball sized divot where the scar tissue was removed).

Hubby says the battered boobie reminds him how lucky he is to have me with him, and not lost to cancer.

So if volcano boob can be sexy, why not flying squirrel skin?

Arctic Mama
11-18-2012, 07:56 PM
Indeed, Kaplods. My husband loved me obese, he loves me slimmer and floppy. I'm still me, no matter what my BMI or state of my skin. And the fact that I am healthier and happier so that he can enjoy me many years longer? That is only a GOOD thing.

11-18-2012, 08:04 PM
The trouble with loose skin in your abdominal area is not all cosmetic, sure it looks bad, but when the weather is hot you perspire under the "apron" and it is uncomfortable and smelly.

11-18-2012, 09:09 PM
The trouble with loose skin in your abdominal area is not all cosmetic, sure it looks bad, but when the weather is hot you perspire under the "apron" and it is uncomfortable and smelly.

The mixed blessing of medical problems caused by loose skin is that if they become chronic, surgery can be justified as medically necessary and then they become covered by insurance in most cases.

Medicare for example won't cover cosmetic skin removal, but will cover skin removal surgery that can be justified as medically necessary.

For example if you get recurrent sores, rashes, and infections from the skin moisture and rubbing, you can often get your insurance to pay for the surgery. (Un)fortunately these infections and sores can very often (not always) be prevented with meticulous hygeine, so unless you have a damaged immune system or deliberately choose not to take precautionary measures, you may not be able to get the procedure covered by your insurance.

I have immune and autoimmune issues, and am extremely prone to skin infections. I have to be careful even with normal scratches and cuts, because they'll often infect.

As a result, I'm quite concerned about the possibility of medical problems as a result of the loose skin, but it's a no-win situation. Either I take extraordinary care to prevent skin irritation and infection and have no chance of paying for the surgery, or I act carelessly and may be able to get the surgery covered, but only after a long period of suffering, risking my health and allowing myself to smelling bad to myself and others in the process.

I've had life-threatening infections in the past, so I would never play russian roulette with my health, so I will continue to do everything I can to prevent the medical and hygenic problems that skin folds can cause.

I've had frequent inner thigh, under arm, and under and between breast skin infections througout my life, and while I had good hygiene, I didn't take extra precautions (because I didn't know them).

I saw a dermatologist who recommended that I wash with a pyrithione zinc shampoo like Head and Shoulders, using it as a body wash, face wash, and shampoo. Zinc is an antimicrobial, and it's worked wonders for my skin issues (diet changes have helped too).

I could probably get skin removal surgery covered if I stopped using my zinc soaps, because I'm sure the infections would return, but that's a pretty extreme price to pay.

There's always a chance that what has been working for me in preventing such problems could stop working, and I would hope that my doctor would help me get the surgery covered or that I'd find some way to afford it, but until then I will definitely do everything I can to prevent the problems form occuring, because they are absolutely miserable.

11-18-2012, 11:44 PM
I have enough of a pronounced apron that without talcum in the summer, I get rashes on my crease. even if I'm clean as a whistle. Thanks for the zinc tip!

11-19-2012, 12:36 AM
Just one more zinc tip - the zinc shampoo does a great job (for me) of preventing rashes and sores - but for treating sores (at the first sign of a sore spot, way before they become very inflamed or infected) I use zinc oxide cream.

The cheapest form of zinc oxide is essentially diaper rash cream. Walgreens has a "skin protectant" zinc oxide and a diaper rash cream zinc oxide - and they're the exact same cream only with different labels on the tube and box. The stuff life guards use on their nose is identical to the zinc oxide diaper rash creams used on baby's bottoms.

Not all diaper rash creams are zinc oxide based though, so you have to read the label. I actually have several types of zinc creams for flares of different skin issues.

Clear zinc oxide - for rashes, pimples and irritation on my face, neck and other spots I don't want to be blotched with white paste. Face potion is one brand. Usually (at least locally) you can only find this in the summer as a sunscreen.

A "creamy" zinc oxide, such as Desitin Creamy, Johnsons No More Rash 3 in 1 (I use Target's store brand, because it's the cheapest).

This I use at the first sign of a problem. It's creamy and feels like a lotion, so it isn't tacky or greasy. This is my standby for less-visible rashes and sores.

And finally, the big guns - a greasy "old style" zinc oxide cream (Target compares their brand to either Desitin original or A&D original, I don't remember which). Often the base is cod liver oil (I don't recommend the Walgreen brand because the fragrance doesn't cover up the fishy smell. The Target brand is cheap but smells as nice as any of the expensive brands).

The greasy ointment I only use for "emergencies." Skin that is already raw and painful (but no certain signs of infection. Pink-red is ok, but dark red and puffy I use antibiotic cream). This is also for areas that get very sweaty and therefore the non-greasy zinc creams tend to be sweated away.

Because the greasy ointments can stain clothing, I only use it at night (and wear ratty jammies).

Since I've got my skin care routine down, I almost never have to big out the greasy, nasty cream, but I keep some on hand just in case. Not long ago my favorite underwear brand (Just My Size boy cut) changed their waistband elastic, and just one day of wearing the new undies, left a very sore, raw rash at my waist (I was away from home or I would have just changed my undies as soon as I noticed a problem).

When I got home I used the greasy zinc before bed. By morning, the bright red, raw skin was barely pink, and pain free.

Hubby teases me because of all the different zinc products I have, but I haven't had to see a doctor for a skin infection in several years (and I used to have at least several appointments a year related to skin infections of one kind or another).