There are numerous valid and plausible reasons why you may be considering breast augmentation and it may well be a procedure that turns out to be right for you, but the fundamental point to always remember is that you need to ask yourself and your surgeon a lot of questions, before you get to the point where you are ready to go ahead.
Is Breast Augmentation right for you?
Many women decide to consult a cosmetic surgeon because they may have smaller breasts than they are happy with, or maybe the problem is asymmetrical breasts or simply the fact that your breasts have lost volume or shape as a result of other issues such as pregnancy or weight loss.
The basic answer to the question whether breast augmentation surgery is the right thing for you to do is that there is no specific right or wrong reason to have the procedure, more a case of establishing what your own personal circumstances and concerns are, so that you and the surgeon can evaluate whether the surgery will provide the right solution you are looking for.
You can view a useful infographic about breast augmentation surgery decisions to get a detailed view on what to expect from the procedure.
If you have asymmetric breasts
It should be a universally acknowledged fact that there are very few women around who can boast that they have a perfect pair of identically sized breasts and from a clinical perspective, slight asymmetry is actually considered to be the normal scenario.
This fact does not detract from the issue that some women have a more pronounced difference in the shape and size of their breasts, to the point where they feel that it has an adverse impact on their body image and self-esteem.
The general benchmark for identifying that you have asymmetric breasts is when they differ in size by at least one cup size. This is something that comes to light during puberty as your breast tissue is starting to grow and may become more pronounced as the years’ progress.
If you are embarrassed about the fact that you have asymmetric breasts and would like to do something about it, cosmetic surgery can be used to correct the imbalance by enlarging the smaller one with an implant or alternatively, reducing the larger breast to create a more balanced look.
One of the critical conversations you will have with your cosmetic surgeon will be a discussion about the choosing the right cup size.
Choosing the right size is of paramount importance and the sizes that should be available and offered to you will be dependent on a number of factors such as your current breast size as well as your current build and physical profile, including the amount of loose fat or skin available in your chest area.
It is normally recommended that you do not consider increasing your current breast size by any more than a maximum of two cup sizes.
Understanding Capsular Contracture
Your body will react to the introduction of an implant and when you have breast enlargement surgery this will cause your body to form a layer of healthy tissue around the implant called a capsule. It is a natural part of the healing process and it should allow your implant to become an integral part of your body.
The breast tissue is comprised of collagen and scar tissue and thickens as a result of what is called capsular contracture. The tissue thickens over a period of time and this has the effect of squeezing the breast implant and helping to hold it in place as intended.
A minimal amount of patients can experience inflammation, redness or general pain after the surgery and your surgeon should explain to you about capsular contraction and advise you to contact them immediately after surgery if you experience any of these particular symptoms.
As inserting a breast implant involves a surgical incision, some element of scarring should be considered inevitable.
Your cosmetic surgeon should be skilled and competent enough to be able to make the incision in the most discreet and least visible point possible. This will mean that scarring is not just minimal but it is often hidden from view in your armpit or under the natural creases of your breasts.
Any scarring will fade over time and a professional cosmetic surgeon is competent enough to produce a result where you should end up with very faint marks that are hardly noticeable after a bit of time has elapsed since the surgery.
Knowing the risks
You need to remember that breast augmentation surgery should be viewed in the same way as almost any other surgical procedure which involves you having a general anesthetic.
Your consultant will discuss all of the relevant risks and provide full details of what the procedure involves but as a general rule, the most likely complication you could experience if you get any issues at all, is capsular contraction.
Getting back to normal
It is only natural to want to know how long it is likely to take you to recover from breast augmentation surgery.
You almost certainly be required to stay overnight after you have had surgery so that the consultant and medical staff can monitor your progress and confirm everything is ok. You will then normally be fitted for a special post-surgical supportive bra, which needs to be worn 24 hours a day and for the duration of the healing process.
Patients can have varying recovery times but you can often expect to have made a full recovery and be able to return to your normal activities within six weeks of having your surgery.
You may actually feel well and confident enough to return to work about two weeks after having surgery, so having a cosmetic procedure like this is unlikely to be too disruptive to your plans in the overall scheme of things.
A far more important consideration is making an informed decision about having breast augmentation surgery in the first place, so make sure you take your time reaching the decision and ask as many question as you need before agreeing to go ahead.
Check out this great infographic from Dr. Robert Goldman to decide if breast augmentation is right for you.