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What Should You Know About Your Breast Augmentation Recovery?

Breast Augmentation

5 minute read

4 Min Read

Are you considering breast augmentation this year? If so, it may be time to start preparing yourself for what will come after your surgery. 

Resting is an essential part of your breast augmentation recovery.
Resting is an essential part of your breast augmentation recovery.

All surgical procedures require a recovery period, and breast augmentation is no different. As the 360,000 women that underwent breast augmentation last year can tell you, recovery from the procedure is not always a walk in the park; however, with proper preparation, it is quite manageable.

To help prepare you, we have collected some of the most common questions asked about breast augmentation recovery. 

When Can I Go Back to Work After Breast Augmentation?

Most women only receive a limited amount of vacation time each year. Therefore, it is essential to know how much of that time will be needed to recover from breast surgery.

It is traditionally suggested to take one to two weeks off of work and your regular activities. This timeline can vary either way depending on the difficulty of your job. Jobs that are more strenuous and require a lot of movement may require more time, but desk-type jobs may only need a few days.

When Will the Swelling Go Down After Breast Augmentation?

Swelling is normal and expected following breast surgery as swelling is your body’s natural response to trauma.

For most patients, swelling peaks during the first three days and then gradually begins to taper off. The majority of the swelling should subside within three to four weeks, but some residual swelling may be present for three to four months.

When Should I Start Massaging My Breasts After Breast Augmentation?

Before and after imaging showing the results of a breast augmentation performed in Panama City, FL.

Breast massages are a useful practice following breast augmentation to keep your implants soft, reduce the chances of capsular contracture, and promote comfort. 

Breast implant massages should start once the incisions have closed, which typically occurs one to two weeks post-op. 

If you are interested in performing breast implant massages, ask your surgeon for appropriate techniques during your consultation.

How Long After Breast Augmentation Can I Work Out?

Your breast tissue and chest muscles need time to rest and heal after your breast augmentation. You should be wary about heading to the gym in the weeks following your operation. 

Straining your body compromises your healing process and can result in complications or a prolonged recovery period.

While everyone heals at a different rate, women should not lift, pull, or push any objects that are over 10 pounds for at least three to four weeks.

When Can I Sleep on My Stomach After Breast Augmentation? 

If you are a stomach-sleeper or a side-sleeper, you may be in for a surprise after your breast augmentation. Since sleeping on either the stomach or side may strain your incisions and irritate your implants, you must sleep on your back for at least two months.

Sleeping on your back will minimize swelling and enhance comfort. 

If you commonly move around or flip during the night, it may be beneficial to put pillows on either side of you that will prevent you from doing so.

How Long Will My Nipples Be Numb After Breast Augmentation?

It is not uncommon to experience changes in nipple or skin sensation or numbness following breast surgery. This numbness is usually temporary, and you should regain feeling in your nipples within a few months. 

Permanent numbness or sensation loss is very rare after breast augmentation. 

When Can I Start Wearing an Underwire Bra?

Many women are anxious to go bra shopping immediately after their augmentation. This is dangerous for two reasons. The first reason is that, since swelling takes several months to dissipate fully, your breasts will not take on their final size appearance for close to one year. 

Therefore, you will want to add to your bra collection slowly, so that you do not have a large pile of bras that are not the correct size for you. 

Secondly, underwire bras should not be worn for the first few months of your recovery. Underwire bras can irritate the area along the breast crease. Since this is where many augmentation incisions are, the wires can irritate the incisions, and even cause the incisions to separate on rare occasions. 

Women whose implants were placed through incisions made around the areola or in the armpit may be able to return to an underwire bra sooner than a woman whose incision was made along the breast crease.

Is it Normal to Have Shooting Pains in My Breasts?

While the feeling of intense, shooting pains in your nipples or breasts is disconcerting, it should not be cause for concern. These bursts of pain are a result of the nerve endings trying to heal and repair themselves. 

Shooting pains in the breast are most common during the first few weeks of your recovery, but they can persist for several months.

Interested in Learning More

If you are looking for more information about breast augmentation or want to set up a consultation with Dr. Mockler, contact Panama City Plastic Surgery by calling (850) 769-7270 tor buy filling out our online contact form

Dr. Mockler performs breast augmentation in Panama City, Florida.