What does breast augmentation do?
Breast augmentation surgery is essentially a surgery to increase breast size. Some of the main reasons why people get breast augmentation surgery include:
It improves the appearance of your breasts if you don't like the size or shape It makes your body look more symmetrical It enhances the appearance of your breasts after pregnancy or significant weight loss It corrects uneven breasts if you've had a mastectomy It makes your breasts look more even if one of your boobs is bigger than the other
Overall, the ultimate goal of breast augmentation surgery is to help you feel more confident in your body. If you feel like your confidence is lacking due to insecurities about your breasts, enhancing your boob size might just be the best solution for you.
So now that you know what the meaning of breast augmentation is, next we'll discuss what the procedure actually entails. Getting a breast augmentation is a serious surgery, so it's important that you have a firm understanding of what will actually be happening during the procedure. This is definitely something you should discuss with your surgeon prior so you can feel secure and at ease walking into that surgical room.
The surgical procedure essentially involves putting breast implants under your chest muscles or behind your breast tissue. A breast implant is a flexible sac that's filled with either saline or silicone. Whether you choose saline or silicone is up to you, but many women report that silicone implants feel more similar to real breasts than saline. However, silicone is more dangerous if it leaks, which is important to take into consideration when choosing a type of implant. Both silicone and saline are available in various sizes.
Your surgeon should work with you to pick the best type of implant for you. The type of implant you choose ultimately depends on your personal preferences about size, feel, and appearance. In addition to choosing between saline or silicone, breast implants can also either be smooth or textured and round or teardrop-shaped. These are all important decisions to make so that you can rest assured that you'll feel happy with your final results. Take your time when making these decisions and consult with your doctor about any questions you may have.
When it comes to the actual procedure, you will either receive general or local anesthesia. General anesthesia is the more common choice as you'll be asleep throughout the entire surgery and it'll be pain-free. With local anesthesia, you will be awake and your breasts will be numbed to block out the pain.
There are a couple of different options when it comes to actually inserting the breast implants. A surgeon can insert the breast implant in one of four ways: under the breast, through the armpit, around the nipple, or through the belly button. We'll get into what each of these techniques entails below:
Under the breast
Under the breast is the most common choice in the United States. During this procedure, a surgeon will make an incision in the crease under the breast. The surgeon will then insert the implant through this opening.
If this is done correctly by an experienced surgeon, the scar can usually be easily hidden underneath the breasts or with a bra or bikini. This insertion technique also completely avoids the milk ducts, so it's a good option for women who want to breastfeed down the road. The downside of this technique is that the scar may stretch after surgery. It's also not ideal for women with naturally very small breasts as this makes it more difficult for surgeons to hide the incision in the crease under the breast.
Through the armpit
Through the armpit is another insertion option. In this method, a surgeon places the implants through a cut under your armpit. This is done with an endoscope, which is a tool that has a camera and a surgical instrument attached at the end.
The upside of this technique is that it essentially leaves your breasts untouched so there will be no visible scarring on your boobs. This also makes it a great choice for women who want to breastfeed as it doesn't interfere with your nipples. However, the downside is that it can be difficult for a surgeon to position the implant properly. It will also leave a visible scar under your armpit.
Around the nipple
With this technique, a surgeon will make an incision around the edge of your areola, usually on the lower half. The breast implant will then be inserted through this opening and positioned by the surgeon.
The scar with this technique is much less visible and the incision can easily be reopened if the patient wants to make any more enhancements later in life. However, there is a chance that this insertion technique interferes with your ability to breastfeed. There is also an increased risk of loss of sensation around the nipple.
Through the belly button
With this method, an implant is inserted through an incision around your belly button. A surgeon will use surgical tools to create a tunnel through the abdomen up to the breasts. Saline breast implants can only be used with this method.
This is another good option for women who want the option to breastfeed as it leaves the breasts untouched. Scarring is also much less noticeable. However, the downside is that there is more of a risk of implant distortion with this technique as the incision is made further away from the breasts, which leaves the surgeon with less control.
What insertion method your surgeon chooses also depends on if you think you'll want to get your boobs enhanced again later down the road. For example, if your incision point is at your belly button, it's very difficult for a surgeon to reopen the incision and make any future changes. However, if your incision point is under your breasts or around the nipple, it's much easier for a surgeon to reopen the incision point and perform additional surgeries.
Regardless of the insertion technique that you choose, you will have scars. Breast augmentation scars are inevitable, but the location and appearance of the scars differ depending on how the surgeon inserts the implants. There are pros and cons to each insertion technique, so be sure to discuss them with your surgeon so you can make the best choice for you.
Recovery looks different for everyone. The intensity and duration of your recovery period depends on various factors, such as the type of implant you choose, the size of the implant, and the insertion technique. Your breasts will likely be sore and swollen for a few weeks after surgery. You'll also likely have to wear either a compression bandage or a sport's bra to provide extra support while you heal and improve the positioning of the implants.
It's crucial to take things slowly during the healing process. Even though you might feel fine, that doesn't mean you can just immediately go back to your regular activities. It might be some time before you can go back to the gym and get your heart rate pumping. You should avoid strenuous activities for at least two weeks after surgery. This ensures that your breasts will heal optimally. If you start to notice warmth in your breasts or develop a fever, contact your surgeon immediately.
Overall, it's safe to assume that you'll need a couple of weeks to properly heal after surgery, so you'll likely have to take some time off of work. This is an important factor to take into consideration with the timeline of your surgery. You'll need to discuss with your employer about taking time off or working from home. It's crucial to prioritize your healing process so that you can stay healthy and get the best results possible.
Although you might be eager to see the results of your breast augmentation as soon as you leave the hospital, remember that healing takes time. It can take up to three months to see the final results of your surgery. Your breasts will likely sit higher on your chest right after the surgery due to swelling, so don't panic if you wake up the morning after surgery with way perkier boobs than you intended. They will drop gradually and begin to look more natural with time.
Getting breast augmentation surgery poses various risks, so it's important to be aware of these prior to getting the procedure. Some of the possible risks associated with breast augmentation surgery include:
- Pain in breasts
- Loss of sensation in nipples
- Implant leakage or rupture
- Improper positioning of the implant
- Anesthesia risks
- Poor scarring
- Can impact lactation
You should discuss all of these, in addition to any other concerns you may have, with your surgeon. Understanding the risks is imperative so that you can be aware of possible side effects that may happen after surgery. You should never go into surgery blindly. Talk to your surgeon and conduct enough research so that you're aware of any possible risks or side effects.