Planning for breast augmentation is an exciting and busy time. As you dream about what your augmented breasts will look like and you plan for your surgery and recovery, questions may arise about the procedure, implant options and recovery period. Dr. George Sanders, a Los Angeles breast augmentation surgeon, thought it would be helpful to discuss what former breast augmentation patients say they wish they had known before surgery. Here are some of their tips.
Don’t pick the same size implants as friends.
Every woman has a unique body type and a specific idea of what looks good. Your perfect implant is based on your anatomy and your goals. Talk to Dr. Sanders and try on implant sizers to help you visualize what your breasts will look like at different sizes. Also, some women say they wish they hadn’t been “greedy” by choosing oversized implants; they say they wish they’d considered moderately sized implants, more proportional to their figure.
Get help for the recovery.
The first week after surgery may be challenging, as your range of motion is limited and energy is low. Even the simplest tasks, like getting up to go to the bathroom or taking your medication, can be difficult. You may want to have someone available for the first week to help you with chores and meals.
Implants don’t need to be replaced unless there is a complication.
Some women believe that having breast augmentation requires additional future surgeries to replace implants. This may or may not be the case, depending on the woman and her implants. The truth is that implants do not need to be replaced unless they develop a complication such as a leak or rupture.
Silicone implants require regular MRIs.
If silicone implants leak, it is nearly impossible to notice. Due to the nature of the filling, silicone implants tend to keep their shape even if they leak. Women with silicone implants should undergo an MRI every 10 years to ensure the integrity of their implants. The chance of an implant leak is about one in four after 25 years.
Accept that the journey may be emotional.
Some women don’t anticipate the rollercoaster of emotions they may feel during recovery. It can be disheartening to be unable to do simple things — like not being able to pick up young children or washing your hair — while the breasts heal. Having a good support system in place is very helpful to navigate the emotional peaks and valleys.
Stock up on recovery essentials.
Women that have had breast augmentation recommend stocking up on some post-op essentials to make recovery go smoother:
- Baggy zip-up tops and sweatshirts that are easy to slip on
- Flexible straws to drink from
- Pre-cooked frozen or easy-to-prepare meals
- Paper plates and plastic cutlery to cut down on dishes
- Facial wipes to freshen up
- Soft cosmetic cotton squares for tender nipples
- Heating pad for a sore back/bottom
- Multiple ice packs to ice the top and bottom of the breasts (keep extras in the freezer)
- Big, firm pillows (like European or wedge pillows) to prop yourself up on for sleeping
- Pen and paper to keep track of medications
Learn More about Breast Augmentation Surgery and Recovery
If you have additional questions about breast augmentation surgery and recovery, Dr. Sanders would be happy to speak with you. Call our office at (818) 981-3333 and make an appointment with him today.