The size and shape of a woman’s breasts are determined by genetics and affected by pregnancy, lifestyle, and age. If you’re dissatisfied with the size and shape of your breasts and want to do something about it, you may be a candidate for breast augmentation surgery. Dustin C. Derrick, MD is the lead plastic surgeon at Cosmetic Surgery of DFW for Mommy Makeovers in Fort Worth, TX, and he can help you determine the size, shape, and positioning of your breast implants.
The shape and positioning of your breasts can have a profound effect on your self-esteem. Choosing to undergo breast augmentation surgery, you can lift, shape, and increase the size of your breasts to a point where you feel good about the way you look. After all, it’s your body. Why should it be anything less than fabulous?
How Do Breast Implants Work?
The procedure is done by placing implants either behind your breast tissue or under your chest muscle. You and your provider can discuss which type of breast implants will move you further toward your cosmetic goals and where they should be placed. The implants themselves consist of a sac filled with sterile saline (saltwater) or silicone.
Breast implants come in a variety of shapes and sizes to ensure every patient is able to achieve their desired profile and physique.
Are You a Candidate for Breast Augmentation?
You Must Be Healthy
Good physical health is the first and, arguably, the most important factor in determining your candidacy for surgery. You must be free of any infections, untreated cancer, or other serious illnesses. If you do have any pre-existing medical issues or conditions, be sure to discuss them with your surgeon at your consultation. Depending on what they are, you may not be disqualified from candidacy.
Your Breasts Aren’t Ideal
If you have breasts that are sagging, flat, elongated, asymmetrical, or just not big enough, you’re probably the perfect candidate for surgery.
You’re a Non-Smoker and a Light Drinker
Tobacco products and alcohol are both known to increase bleeding – not the effect you want if you’re going to undergo surgery. If you do smoke or drink, you’ll probably be instructed to quit for a while leading up to your procedure, and for a significant amount of time afterward to protect against excess bleeding.
You Have Realistic Expectations
Breast implant surgery will change the way you look, but it cannot fix all of your body image issues (if you have any). If other parts of your body are causing you distress, they will need to be addressed by additional procedures. Many women who undergo breast augmentation surgery also choose to undergo a tummy tuck and/or liposuction to further sculpt the physique they want.
Your Breasts Are Fully-Developed
A breast implant procedure can result in unsatisfactory shape or size of your breasts if they aren’t fully developed. As a matter of fact, the FDA requires that a woman be at least 18 years old if they want saline implants and 22 for silicone.
Breast Augmentation FAQs
1. Am I Too Old for the Procedure?
We’ve already covered that women under the age of 18 are not eligible for breast implants. But how old is too old? Most women who get breast implants do so in their 30s, though many women in their 40s and 50s choose breast implants. No matter where you are on your life’s journey, if you’re interested in the procedure, you should call and schedule a consultation today.
2. What If I Plan to Have More Children?
Aside from genetics and aging, pregnancy will dramatically change the size and shape of your breasts – with or without implants. Unfortunately, this increase in size can have a negative effect on the appearance of your augmented breasts. While you can continue to have children post-procedure, it is recommended to wait at least 6 months.
3. Can I Breast Feed With Implants?
Studies have shown that breastfeeding with implants is perfectly safe for both of you.
4. Does the Procedure Correct My Sagging Breasts?
Women who suffer from ptosis, or sagging breasts, can make excellent candidates for breast implants. It’s important to note that the severity of your sagging breasts may require additional surgery to correct. For example, if your nipples droop below the lower crease of the breast, a breast lift can address and correct the issue.
5. How Do I Choose the Right Size?
Choosing the right size of the implant is a critically important decision, as choosing the wrong size can lead to disappointment instead of elation post-surgery. Your surgeon will take note of your cosmetic goals and then discuss with you the best size and shape to achieve them.
Be careful using your bra-size to determine your breast size. Bra sizes are variable and not a great way to measure the final size of your breasts. Every 125-150cc of implant volume increases the size of your breasts one cup size. That being said, a bra can still be useful to give your surgeon an idea of the size and shape of your desired results and can discuss with you a pathway to get there.
6. When Can I Start Exercising Again?
It’s often recommended that patients start walking a bit immediately after the procedure. That being said, strenuous or vigorous exercise should be avoided for at least 6 weeks. Vigorous physical exercise can cause your implants to shift position, and can even cause healing issues that also affect the shape of your new breasts.
7. When Can I Go Back to Work?
The timeframe for which you can return to work depends primarily on your job and the physical demands it puts on your body. Reaching should be avoided for a couple of weeks, and lifting anything heavier than 5 pounds should not be done until at least 6 weeks. It is the lifting restriction that most often prevents a speedy return to work.
Women who work desk jobs, or other jobs where they spent a lot of time sitting and their upper body movements are minimal may be able to return to work sooner.
Your Breast Implant Procedure Options
The desire for larger, perkier breasts has been around for some time. Since women have different body types and goals, additional procedures have been designed.
While discussing which procedure is right for you, you will decide with your surgeon whether saline or silicone implants will be right for you. The best option usually comes down to what you prefer and your surgeon’s opinion. Your surgeon will fully explain the features of each procedure to you so that you can make an informed choice.
Silicone Gel Implants
The breast implant sac is filled with a soft, elastic silicone gel and comes in a variety of shapes and firmness, providing you with plenty of options from which to choose to fit your aesthetic goals. Silicone implants come pre-filled, and if you choose larger ones, you may need a longer incision.
Cohesive Gel Silicone Implants
Also known as “gummy bear” or “form stable,” these implants are filled with cohesive gel – making them thicker and firmer than the regular silicone option. These “form stable” implants tend to keep their form better than saline implants.
Saline-Filled Breast Implants
Saline-filled breast implants contain sterile salt water (saline). They can either be pre-filled like the silicone variety, or filled at the time of surgery so that alterations in size can be made.
Structured Saline-Filled Breast Implants
These implants are something of a hybrid between silicone and saline options. They are filled with sterile saline, but also contain a structure inside to mimic the firmness and elasticity of silicone.
These are a relatively new option, having only been available since 2015.
What Results Can I Expect?
Breast implant surgery provides a significant improvement in the shape, size, and texture of your breasts. It can also result in an increase in perkiness, though women with significantly sagging breasts may need an additional procedure to achieve her goals. After surgery, your breasts will look younger, larger, and shapelier.
How Long Will the Results Last?
Breast implants don’t expire, so you’ll never need to get a replacement because your implants are no longer “good.” However, they are subject to aging over time, just like your body. The implants are intended to last 10 to 20 years before needing to be replaced.
Try to avoid over-exposure to the sun, as sunlight is the #1 cause of aging in your skin. Also, you will want to always wear a bra (especially if you paired your breast implant procedure with a breast lift) to keep your breasts from starting to sag again, as they will be heavier after augmentation.
Can Breast Augmentation Be Paired With Other Procedures?
As previously mentioned, some women will require additional procedures to meet their cosmetic goals. Fortunately, depending on the desired procedure, you may not need to have several surgeries performed at different times; some other procedures can be paired with breast implants for even more dramatic results.
One of the procedures most commonly performed at the same time as your implants is a breast lift. Breast lifts are a pretty basic procedure that moves the nipple and areola, lifts the breasts to a more perky position, and eliminates any excess skin.
If you want to get the most out of your surgery, pairing these two options is a fantastic idea. Both procedures will heal at the same time, allowing you to avoid additional downtime later on.
Another procedure that is commonly paired with breast implants is a tummy tuck. A tummy tuck addresses loose, sagging skin around your abdomen and flanks and can eliminate stretch marks below your naval.
Liposuction is the targeted removal of fat from your body. If you want to address stubborn, diet and exercise-resistant pockets of fat, but don’t need a more comprehensive procedure, then liposuction may be an option.
Speak with your surgeon if there are any areas you feel self-conscious about and discuss the possibility of undergoing liposuction. If the part of your body you want to change is on your backside, you may not be able to combine it with a breast augmentation.
Learn More Today!
The best candidates for breast augmentation surgery are women in good general health who do not smoke and are dissatisfied with the appearance of their bust. Women with significantly sagging breasts may also need to incorporate a breast lift to meet their aesthetic goals. The procedure can also be paired with other cosmetic surgeries to help sculpt or shape other parts of your body
If you think you’re a candidate for breast augmentation surgery, or if you have any questions for mommy makeover and would like to schedule a consultation with Dustin C. Derrick, MD at Cosmetic Surgery of DFW, give us a call at 817-562-7979.