Everyone wants proportion and balance in their appearance and a body that’s contoured and firm. The reality is that over time, our bodies evolve due to weight changes, pregnancy, skin quality, heredity and, well, gravity. And it can be frustrating when exercise and dieting cannot fix certain problem areas.

This is what body contouring with Dr. Ellen Mahony can address. In a relaxed, one-on-one conversation with Dr. Mahony, a board certified plastic surgeon in the Westport and Fairfield, CT area, she’ll listen intently to your goals and expectations and she’ll take as much time as you wish to discuss your questions and concerns.

You can look forward to an honest assessment of your perspective and your needs. And soon you will realize that Ellen is about to become not only your doctor, but your confidant and friend.

Then, from a wide range of options, you and Ellen will team up to customize a treatment plan that encompasses one or more of the following body sculpting procedures:

You don’t have to let a few trouble spots get in the way of your vitality, strength and passion. Represent who you are with the body you want. In Ellen, you’re choosing a cosmetic surgeon who will understand who you are and what you want to achieve for yourself…then deliver beautiful results that meet those goals.

Cellulite and Stretch Marks Q & A

What is cellulite?
The “cottage cheesy,” dimpled look of cellulite represents pockets of fat below the skin that are pushing up to the surface between fibrous bands of connective tissue. The strain on the tissue bands from the pressure pulls the skin down and causes indentations. The bands pull downward and the fat pushes upward causing an uneven skin surface. Over time as the skin ages, gravity causes further strain on the bands, accentuating the appearance of cellulite.

Can it completely go away?

What can I do on my own to make cellulite look better?
Hydration (drinking lots of water) will improve the skin quality and appearance. Cardiovascular exercise accelerates the filtering of your blood and lymphatics, removes toxins, and reduces fat volume. Massage the area. Target the particular area with toning exercises to better define the muscle and also assist in burning down the fat volume.

What other treatments may help?
There are a variety of laser and heat source treatments intended to improve the look of cellulite and/or melt some fat and break up some fibrous bands. Results are variable. Liposuction by a board-certified plastic surgeon can be delicately performed to reduce superficial fat deposits and break up fibrous bands.

What causes stretch marks?
Stretch marks (striae) occur when the fast rate of skin stretching exceeds the time it takes for the collagen and elastin fibers to relax and accommodate to the new length. The marks represent small skin tears. Common situations that contribute to the formation of stretch marks are pregnancy and weight gain. Sometimes they feel smooth, other times they feel like little dents in the skin surface. Overall, the stretched skin is thinner than the other skin and prone to easily re-stretch under tension.

Will stretch marks go away on their own?
No. They are a lifelong problem.

How to prevent stretch marks?
Although it may be impossible to prevent them entirely, it is definitely worthwhile to make the effort. Using heavy hydrating moisturizers through your pregnancy will help with the skin’s pliability and elasticity. Supporting areas that are gravity dependent (such as a pregnant belly) will reduce the tension on the skin. And don’t forget to protect the skin from the sun with a good block or SPF clothing. It’s better to attempt to minimize stretch marks since when they appear, they’re impossible to erase!

What can I do to fix stretch marks?
There are a wide range of treatment options available but be aware, nothing will permanently erase stretch marks. Some lasers can reduce their redness and other lasers can lighten those that are dark in color. Some lasers provide a little skin tightening or reduction of the indentations. Various skin creams are marketed for stretch marks as well. However, be very careful about investing in lasers and creams as these are not fail-safe options and results may not meet your expectations. If you are compelled to try these procedures, do a “test” area first as a trial so you know what you are going to get before financially committing to a disappointing, expensive, sub-par result. Surgery, such as a tummy tuck, will remove stretch marks of the lower abdomen and can shift those from above the belly button to below which is often a very desirable outcome!