Let’s Talk About Twin Skin

If you have delivered a set of twins, even if you didn’t go to full term with your pregnancy, the odds that your overly-stretched abdominal skin bounced right back to before-pregnancy consistency are pretty low. We are left with, what we all have come to know as, twin skin.

After my first set of twins were born, I held on to pregnancy and breastfeeding weight until I made a committed effort to lose it with the help of Weight Watchers (God bless ’em). But despite the fact that I eventually lost all (and more) that I wanted to lose, I was still left with a very loose-feeling lower stomach, and a “shelf” slightly overhanging my C-section incision. Yikes! And to think I actually believed that all the cocoa butter I rubbed all over while I was pregnant was going to prevent this from happening! Wrong.

Pregnancy number two stretched my belly further beyond the previous one because I carried these babies over four weeks longer. Although I didn’t experience any increase to my shelf-effect (because I had delivered vaginally this time), I still could hold my twin skin in both of my hands. Geez!

In the seven years between my second and third twin pregnancies, I managed to get back into pretty decent shape by eating right and exercising. But despite my thousands of sit-ups and crunches, I began to accept that my abdomen simply would never be as tight as it had been before I’d had two sets of twins. Following twin pregnancy number three, having occurred when I was over 40, well, I was in for (and still am having) quite a battle with my post pregnancy body! And no, neither of the photos featured in this article are of me … 😉

Twin skin is a condition that simply does not go away. It is skin stretched passed its ability to re-conform to its original, pre-stretched elasticity, resulting in saggy, wrinkly, loose-feeling skin just below the belly button. Kate (when she was being interviewed on “Jon and Kate Plus 8”) described her belly as a “bum in the front” … double handfuls of droopy skin. Fortunately, a kind and generous surgeon volunteered to give her a complimentary tummy tuck. The rest of us, however, aren’t generally given that kind of opportunity … rats!

Remedies for Stretch Marked Twin Skin?

We all know there are creams and balms out there with claims to tighten loose skin, but really, once the skin’s elasticity is gone, it’s gone. The only real remedy is to surgically remove the excess fat pockets and loose skin, pulling and tightening the remaining skin and abdominal muscles with discretely tucked sutures, tailored to each woman’s body. Tummy tucks (abdominoplasty), unfortunately, are considered cosmetic procedures and thus not covered under most medical insurance plans. Out of pocket, this procedure can cost upwards of $4,000. There are also stretch mark removal procedures, but again, probably are not covered by insurance.

So how do you deal with your post pregnancy tummy?

What remedies or methods of skin improvement have you discovered? Is there any tightening creams out there that have made any real difference for you? I, as well as all of our readers, would love to learn about any ideas, suggestions or recommendations!

 

Blessings ~

 

Oops Moms of Twins: Your Stress Is Showing!

“I can usually tell if

someone is stressed out or not just by looking at their belly size.”

– Dr. Mehmet Oz in First for Women

 

Boy, if that’s true, than we’re a stressed-out society! Is it my imagination or does it seem like more and more people, from children to seniors, seem to be harboring excessive amounts of belly fat these days? In an excerpt from a to-the-point article posted on the awareness-building and informative blog, Always sick and Tired (Help me get healthy), popular blog writer and chronic illness sufferer herself Always Sick Chick conveys to her readers after thorough research the following:

“There are obvious ways stress affects us negatively. It can cause irritability, tiredness, loss of energy, loss of appetite or an increased appetite, make us crave unhealthy things such as sugary foods with no nutritional value, etc…  All of these come together and cause weight gain, but it’s the type of weight gain that it causes that makes it different from anything else.

When we are chronically stressed out, our bodies believe we are in peril.  We can thank evolution for this one, as the chronic stress of our ancestors was usually related to famine or extreme danger from a predator.  Such stress meant the body needed to store up fat for fuel to keep from starving or to give extra energy for the fight or flight against the predator.

Today, though, our stress is different.  We are not facing famine.  Quite the contrary, in fact.  Food is plentiful.  So whenever we are stressed, our bodies think we need food, even when we don’t.  And as we eat that double cheeseburger, our body is storing every ounce of fat in it for the famine that it thinks is approaching, or the marathon it thinks we need to run to escape that saber tooth that no longer exists.  The body does this with the help of a naturally occurring steroid produced by the body called cortisol.

You’ve no doubt seen those commercials about cortisol and how it causes stubborn belly fat. They’re selling you pills that don’t work, but their information about what causes belly fat is true according to Dr. Oz.  The cortisol makes you hungry, even when you don’t need food, because you’re stressed out.”

I found that the older I became, the harder it was for me to lose my pregnancy and post-pregnancy  weight, and I have had experience myself with stress-induced weight-gain and the inability to lose weight due to stress. It’s so frustrating, and the more stressed I am about the weight, the harder it is to take off … a truly vicious cycle.

Doctors and fitness experts agree that plain and simply: take in less than you burn, and you’ll lose weight; take in more than you burn and you’ll gain. Exercise while eating correctly will increase your metabolism and burn fat and calories while it also builds stronger muscle mass and allow you to have a more efficient metabolism. With more muscle mass, you’ll lose weight more quickly than if you only ate less or made better food choices because muscle burns calories, even while resting.

There’s some food for thought for you!

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Blessings ~