Breast implant surgery, also referred to as breast augmentation surgery, is a widely sought-after cosmetic operation aimed at enhancing a woman’s breast size and contour. This procedure has gained immense popularity in recent decades as women desire to enhance their physical appearance, achieve better proportions, and create a more aesthetically pleasing silhouette. Whether it’s the natural ageing process, weight loss, the effects of pregnancy, or simply a desire for different breast sizes, breast augmentation offers a range of solutions. This surgical procedure can yield various outcomes, including increased breast size, restoration of lost volume, or reshaping the breasts to meet specific aesthetic goals.
Regardless of the motivation behind opting for breast implants, it’s crucial to be well-informed before making this significant decision.
Types of Implants
This cosmetic enhancement involves a selection of implant options made from different materials. In the course of the procedure, these implants are carefully placed behind the breast tissue to enhance the size and promote better body proportion. Each implant type presents its own set of advantages and disadvantages. Consulting with a medical professional can guide you in selecting the implants that best align with your body and preferences.
There are two main types of breast implants:
- Saline implants
Saline implants have a silicone outer shell filled with a sterile saltwater solution. These can be filled during surgery to achieve the desired size. Saline implants provide uniform shape and firmness.
- Silicone implants
The Silicone shells are filled with viscous silicone gel. Silicone implants provide a more natural look and feel than saline. They are also less likely to wrinkle or ripple. However, if a silicone implant ruptures may require surgery to remove and replace the implant.
Once you’ve decided on the implant material, the next step is to think about the size and shape of your implant. Size encompasses the dimensions, volume, and how much the implant projects. Moreover, you have the freedom to pick the desired shape for your implant, which includes –
- Round Implants provide optimal fullness but have a higher chance of visible rippling.
- Teardrop-Shaped Implants look more natural and can achieve better upper pole fullness. However, they must be placed carefully to avoid implant rotation.
There are several options for the incision location:
This is the most common incision for breast augmentation, and it is made underneath the breast. This leaves minimal scarring and can be covered with a bra or even a swimmer’s top. Moreover, for women who may plan to have children in the future, this incision option minimises potential complications related to breastfeeding.
This incision is made along the lower edge of the areola. This can be discreet, but it runs the risk of interfering with breastfeeding and losing the nipple sensation.
This incision is made within the armpit crease. This leaves no visible scarring on the breast but makes proper implant placement more difficult.
Implants can be placed either above or below the chest muscle:
- Subglandular Placement above the muscle can provide greater upper pole fullness. However, there is a higher chance of capsular contracture and implant visibility.
- Submuscular Placement beneath the muscle provides more coverage but can require a longer recovery time.
Choosing a Surgeon
It is important to select an experienced, board-certified plastic surgeon. Be sure to:
- Check their credentials and hospital privileges.
- View before/after photos of their implant procedures.
- Read reviews and speak to former patients.
- Ensure they are experienced in the implant type and method you prefer.
- Discuss options to achieve your desired aesthetic goals.
Breast augmentation recovery typically involves:
- Mild to moderate post-op pain is controlled by medication.
- Swelling and bruising that subsides within weeks.
- Wearing a surgical bra and avoiding strenuous exercise for 4-6 weeks.
- Temporary loss of nipple sensation that usually returns within several months.
- Taking at least a week off work while avoiding heavy lifting for 4-6 weeks.
Your comfort and confidence in your decision is paramount when considering breast surgery. Being well-informed allows you to set realistic expectations and prepare properly. Discuss all factors thoroughly with your plastic surgeon to decide if breast implants are right for you.