Everything You Need to Know About Breast Enlargement Procedures
Thinking about getting a breast enlargement? We understand it may seem like a complex process. However, this guide covers everything you need to know about breast enlargement, from the type of implants to what you can expect from recovery.
What is a Breast Enlargement?
Breast enlargement is the process of surgically placing breast implants either under or over the breast muscle. The purpose of breast enlargement is varied and can be undergone for reasons such as aesthetics, breast asymmetry or correcting previous surgeries.
One of the core benefits driving people to have a breast enlargement is to increase their self confidence. It may be you’ve never felt happy with the appearance of your breasts or that you no longer like how they look after weight loss, pregnancy/breastfeeding or other surgery.
Using implants is the most popular way to achieve a breast enlargement, although some people do opt for a fat transfer procedure instead. There are different types, shapes, sizes and profiles available, which we’ll look at next.
Types of Breast Implants
There are two main types of breast implants: silicone or saline. Both are made with a silicone shell but have a different filling
- Silicone implants have a silicone gel filling, which provides a natural look and feel
- Saline implants are filled with a sterile salt water solution and are generally smaller and firmer than their silicone counterparts
Breast Implant Sizes, Shapes and Profiles
Both types of implants are available in a wide range of sizes, measured in cubic centimeters. For example, a 300cc implant contains 300 cubic centimeters of filling. You’ll generally find implants in two shapes: round or teardrop.
Your surgeon will discuss the sizes with you and help you find the best fit to help you achieve your desired results. The profile of your breast implant also has an impact on the end size and shape of your breast enlargement.
The profile affects the projection of your implants. The higher the profile, the narrower the base of the implant so the more it projects away from your chest. A low profile implant has a wider base, so it doesn’t project so much. With this in mind, a 300cc low profile implant will create a very different shape than a 300cc high profile implant.
While this sounds a lot to take in, don’t panic! All surgeons at Suffolk Breast Practice are incredibly experienced in all the different types of implants. Your consultations are where you’ll go through all of the options and how to achieve the look you want, with your surgeon guiding you each step of the way.
Breast Implant Placements
The final aspect to consider is the placement of your breast implants. There are three different placement options:
- Submuscular (under the muscle)
- Subglandular (over the muscle)
- Subfascial (partially over the muscle)
Each option has its pros and cons and the right one for you will depend entirely on your personal circumstances. Your surgeon will talk to you about it in more detail at your consultations and suggest the best option for you.
What to Expect Before the Operation
The first step in your breast enlargement journey is booking a consultation. You’re under no obligation to proceed with surgery after having a consultation. This is your chance to have face-to-face time with a surgeon to look at your desired outcome, the best way to achieve it and even see a sneak peak of the new you with our revolutionary Crisalix 3D body scanning software.
You’ll always have consultations with a surgeon before you can book surgery. If you decide to proceed, your surgery will be booked and you’ll be given all the information you need to prepare.
The two best things you can do before your breast surgery is to maintain a healthy weight and stop smoking, ideally six weeks before the operation.
What to Expect From Your Surgery
Your breast enlargement will take place at one of the two private hospitals we work from:
Your breast enlargement procedure will most likely take place under general anaesthetic and takes around 1 hour. The surgeon will make an incision either under your breast or around the nipple (more common for uplift procedures). The breast implant is inserted and the incision is closed with sutures and a dressing applied.
After the Procedure
After your breast implant procedure has taken place, there are several things you should expect. Some tenderness, swelling and bruising is perfectly normal, but you’ll be monitored to ensure everything is healing as it should be.
You’ll need to wear a compression bra to aid healing for the first few weeks. These specialist bras aid recovery and help reduce the chances of any bruising or swelling.
Expect to take 1-2 weeks off work and 6 weeks before you can resume normal activities, such as exercising.
Your recovery period is just as important as the procedure itself, which is why we offer extensive aftercare at Suffolk Breast Practice.
Feeling Sick After a Breast Enlargement
Feeling sick after breast augmentation does affect some patients, but not all. The anaesthetic used to keep you asleep for your surgery can sometimes make people feel sick. It’s a very normal side effect but it doesn’t last long.
Sleeping After Breast Surgery
For the first 6 weeks, we recommend sleeping on your back but propped upright. Top advice from previous patients is to invest in some comfy pillows, especially a v-pillow, for extra support. It may not be the comfiest, but this position reduces swelling and helps your breasts heal symmetrically. You can resume side-sleeping after 12 weeks.
Showering After Breast Implants
Keeping your wounds clean and dry is crucial for a smooth recovery, so you’ll be given advice on showering after surgery. In most cases, you’ll have to wait a few days or weeks before you can shower as usual. For baths or fully submerging yourself in water, you’ll need to leave at least 6 weeks post-surgery.
What are the Risks Associated with Breast Enlargement Surgery?
As with any surgical procedure, breast enlargement does pose several risks. Your surgeon will do everything to minimise these risks, but we’ll cover the main ones you need to be aware of when considering surgery.
Breast Surgery Scarring
The incision made during your breast enlargement procedure can cause scarring. Of course, scarring will fade over time and many patients are left with a fine, pale line once the incision is fully healed. Your surgeon will always discuss the type of incision required for your surgery so you fully understand what to expect.
At Suffolk Breast Practice, our skilled surgeons are fully experienced in minimising scarring to give you the best results from your breast enlargement.
Learn more about what to expect from scars after a breast enlargement in our previous article.
Pain After Breast Enlargement
Patients often worry about the pain after a breast enlargement. The truth is, there’s no way to know how you’ll feel afterwards. Some pain, bruising and swelling is perfectly normal in the weeks following your surgery.
Some patients report feeling a tightness or pulling sensation rather than pain, whereas others feel tenderness. You’ll be given full advice on how to manage your pain during your recovery period, as well as receiving medication before you’re discharged.
If you’re considering having breast enlargement surgery, don’t let the potential pain put you off. It’s a short-term side effect of long-term benefits.
Changes in Nipple and Breast Sensitivity
In some cases, you may experience an increase, decrease or complete loss of sensation in your nipple and breast area. This is usually just a temporary change and your sensitivity will return to normal once the area heals, approximately 6-18 months.
Does implant size have an effect on nipple sensation? As a general rule, the larger the implant, the more pressure is placed on the surrounding nerves, which is more likely to lead to a decrease in sensitivity. However, the risk of this is low.
Implant Leakage or Rupture
Disruption to Breastfeeding
Some people have found that breast augmentation has impacted their ability to breastfeed. Although this doesn’t affect everyone, it is certainly a risk to take into account.
Breast Enlargement at Suffolk Breast Practice
Breast enlargements are incredibly popular in the UK and have one of the highest satisfaction rates of all cosmetic procedures. What’s the key to success? Choosing the right surgeon!
You want a surgeon who understands what you want to achieve and has the experience to make it happen. At Suffolk Breast Practice, we’re led by one of the UK’s most respected surgeons, Mr Hussein Tuffaha. Along with winning the “iWantGreatCare” certificate in 2022 and 2023, he’s fully certified with:
We have a promise to our patients to ensure you have the best possible breast enlargement experience from start to finish.
Are you ready to take the next step of your journey to a more confident you? Contact us today to book your consultation.