Patients usually have breast augmentation from a surgical center or hospital as an outpatient, since hospital admission is rarely required.
Breast augmentation is commonly carried out under general anesthesia or, in some rare cases, local anesthesia.
The steps of the surgical operation
- Your surgeon makes one cut in the line below your breast, under your arm, or around your nipple.
- The surgeon then separates your breast tissue from the muscles as well as the chest connective tissue. As a result of the division, a pocket is formed at the front or back of the pectoral muscle. The prosthetic breast is then inserted in the pocket and centered at the back of the nipple.
- In saline prosthetic breasts, a surgeon inserts empty artificial breasts and then fills them with sterile salt water when they are well positioned. On the other hand, silicone prosthetic breasts are filled with a silicone gel before they are inserted.
- When the implant fits in the right position, the cut is normally closed by stitching it off and covering it with a bandage.
After the surgery
A patient is likely to swell or have sores within several weeks of having the surgery. The patient may also have bruises, which will lead to scars that fade slowly with time. However, the scars don’t disappear fully.
The wearing of compression tops or sports bras offers more support to the artificial breasts and makes them maintain the right position. You may also be prescribed some pain relieving drugs.
Abide by the instructions from your surgeon regarding your return to your usual activities. You will be able to resume work within several days or a week if your job isn’t physically strenuous. Don’t perform strenuous activities until at least one week after the surgery is over. Note that your breasts will be sensitive to movements that may cause physical shocks, jolts, or vibrations, as well as physical contact.
You will require a followup with your surgeon so that nonabsorbent sutures or drainage tubes are removed if the surgeon used them on your body during the surgical operation.
Redness and warmth in your breast or extreme body temperatures may be signs of an infection. Therefore, talk to your surgeon as soon as you notice them. You should also seek your surgeon’s advice if you have breathing problems or pain in your chest.
Your new look
The size of your breast will increase immediately after having surgery. However, it will take longer for the artificial breasts to be in the desired position. Your body will also take more time to adapt to the new shape. The majority of patients normally take two to three months to heal completely. You should note that:
- Initially, your breasts will sit far up on your chest
Your natural skin, as well as tissues, requires some more time to surround the prosthetic breasts. The swelling, which occurs as a result of the surgery, also makes one feel like the breasts are in your armpits initially. This is normal. Your surgeon purposely puts an implant in a particular part to ensure that the boobs look natural at the end.
The breasts usually settle in their right position approximately three months after the surgery, after which the changes become more subtle.
- Prickling sensation in your nipples
The nerves and muscles, as well as other breast tissues, such as nipples, are normally affected by breast augmentation surgery. As you recover, you will experience occasional prickling, short spasms or a throbbing sensation with tingles while the nerve tissues heal. As you heal, you will also sometimes experience numbness, soreness, or abnormal sensitivity in your nipples.
- You will be able to sense the movement of the implants as your chest muscle moves
You will feel the movement, especially if the implants were put beneath your muscles. It feels awkward initially, but you are the only person who will notice it.
- You will somehow question your decision
Several weeks after having the surgery, you are likely to doubt whether you did the right thing by having your boobs enhanced. Despite liking your new look and knowing that what you did wasn’t wrong, you will still be doubtful. Don’t worry if this happens to you. It is a normal feeling to people who go through a cosmetic surgical operation.
See it this way--you changed some parts of your body significantly within a day after having them in the previous state since puberty. It takes courage to change your body, even if it is for the sake of improvement. It is normal to feel awkward for some time. Mostly, you will see it as a costly procedure, but with time you will be excited about the changes. Luckily, you will not even remember that you have artificial boobs after a few months. They will feel natural.
Augmentation surgery normally leads to:
1. Painful or uncomfortable breast area
2. Swollen breasts
3. Bruises on the breast and chest regions
4. Tiny blood spots on the bandages
6. Constipation in case of painkiller overuse
Is it painful?
The surgical method used will determine the intensity of pain that you will feel. Inserting the implant under the chest muscle causes more discomfort than when it is put on the muscle. There are also varying pain thresholds in different people. The majority of women experience only slight discomfort and can return to their usual activities one day after having a breast augmentation. Regardless of the intensity of your discomfort, you must follow the instructions given by your surgeon on the "dos and don’ts" after going through the surgery.
After having a breast augmentation surgery:
1. Sleep on your back for 6 weeks
2. Avoid vigorous activities such jumping and running, among others
3. Don’t strain by checking your breast fold or areola scars or raise your arms to check the scars on your armpits
4. Avoid lifting your arms beyond your shoulders, particularly if the “armpit method" was used in the breast surgery
5. Avoid wetting your wounds 2 – 5 days after the operation
6. Don’t take a shower for 2 weeks. However, you can bathe after the initial few days, but ensure that the wounds and the bandages don’t retain any moisture by drying them thoroughly using a hairdryer on a cool setting.
7. Don’t remove the surgical bra or compression band(s) except during washing.
8. Avoid putting on a push-up bra for at least 6 weeks after the operation.
What to watch for after the surgery
Contact your surgeon immediately if you experience:
- Blood coming out of the wounds, soaking the bandages and seeming not to stop
- Too much swelling in one or both breasts
- Shortness of breath or pain in the chest
- Serious headache
You should be realistic in your anticipation of the results of the surgery. Your breasts’ appearance can change as a result of the breast implant. Your body appearance and self-esteem may improve, thanks to the surgery. However, avoid being a perfectionist, else you may end up being disappointed.
Additionally, the breasts will continue to age after the surgery. The appearance of the boobs may also be affected by body weight changes. You can have a repeat of the surgery if you are not pleased by how your breasts look.
- The wearing of compression tops or sports bras offers more support to the artificial breasts and makes them maintain the right position.
- You will require a followup with your surgeon so that nonabsorbent sutures or drainage tubes are removed if the surgeon used them on your body during the surgical operation.
- Your natural skin, as well as your tissues, requires some more time to surround the prosthetic breasts.