Breast Augmentation Recovery: A Week-By-Week Guide
If you’re planning on getting breast implants, you are not alone! Breast Augmentation continues to be the most popular plastic surgery procedure in the country with around 300,000 procedures performed each year. Naturally, the next question people often have is this: what is the recovery timeline after Breast Augmentation?
To answer this question, you might have already checked out the Tannan Plastic Surgery Recovery Calculator. We created this handy resource to show you the typical recovery process for the most popular plastic surgery procedures. Now, in this post, we’ll get into more details specifically around Breast Augmentation recovery. Scroll down to see a week-by-week guide on what to expect after getting silicone or saline breast implants. If you are more interested in the workout guide for exercising after breast augmentation, read this post.
Breast Augmentation Recovery: Week 1
The first week of Breast Augmentation recovery is all about managing swelling. By keeping the swelling down with ice packs, we can reduce pain and discomfort after the procedure.
If your implants are under the muscle, the swelling tends to be greater. This happens because both the breast and the muscle swell. In these situations, we recommend rotating ice packs from on top of the breast to the sides while you are awake.
Implants above the muscle also lead to some swelling, but typically not as much. In these cases as well, ice is very very helpful with keeping swelling under control during Breast Augmentation recovery.
Breast Augmentation Recovery: Week 2
During the second week after surgery, the swelling should be getting much better. Don’t overdo it though! As you start getting back to work and your normal routine, you absolutely should not do strenuous activity. It is still too soon to hit the weights or the exercise machines. Get the full details here on when you can get back to the gym.
You might be ready to start driving a car again during this week. Most women feel comfortable driving after gummy bear silicone breast implants or saline breast implants when they are not taking narcotic pain pills and they can turn and check their blind spot without pain. Typically, that is around day 7 of the Breast Augmentation recovery timeline.
It is normal to notice some numbness in the skin between your nipple and the surgical scar at the lower part of your breast. This will improve over time. Nipple sensation can be slightly increased or decreased in the first month, and this tends to normalize at around 6 months.
Surgical tape that I place in the operating room on top of your surgical incision starts to peel off around the two week mark. If it hasn’t peeled all the way, we recommend you go ahead and remove that while you are in the shower two or three weeks after your surgery. If you notice or feel a knot at the edges of your incision, don’t worry. I will trim that when you come for your 4 week appointment.
For some of you with silicone or saline breast implants under the muscle, I’ll teach you how to massage the breast implants. This massaging helps them drop and settle, or “drop and fluff” as some folks call it. You continue breast implant massages for about a month to ensure the best results.
Breast Augmentation Recovery: Weeks 3 and 4
In the third and fourth week of Breast Augmentation recovery, things should be looking great. If your implants are above the muscle, usually most of the swelling is gone and you should be arriving at your final breast size and shape now.
When you come to my plastic surgery office in Raleigh, North Carolina, for your 1 month follow-up, we will give you Biocorneum Silicone Scar Cream. This is the highest quality medical grade Silicone Scar Gel available, and clinically proven to minimize scars. This Silicone Scar Cream that I give you is made by the same company that makes the Sientra Breast Implants – only available for patients of board-certified plastic surgeons like us. I will instruct you to apply the scar cream on your scar twice a day and let it air dry before you put your bra back on.
Regarding bras, we recommend using wireless bras that are snug for the first four weeks after surgery. We place you in one of these bras in surgery. For examples of some back-up bras you can order, I recommend you read this post on post-surgical bras. Now after one month, feel free to go braless or switch gears and go shop for your new bra size. Underwire bras are ok after four weeks after your breast implant procedure.
For those of you with implants under the muscle, it takes several more months (sometimes even a year) for the breast implants to settle into place. This process of breast implants settling is longer under the muscle. The swelling is predominantly in the upper part of your chest and pec muscle for the first few months. This lasts until the breast implants settle and stretch out the lower half of your breast, where the breast implants belong for a natural look.
Until the breast implants drop, your upper breast might be swollen with a more rectangular shape, outlining your swollen pec muscle. This is completely normal and will subside with time.
Breast Augmentation Recovery Summary
We want your breast augmentation surgery process to be as smooth as possible. From picking the best plastic surgeon for you, to selecting saline or silicone breast implants, deciding between above or below the muscle, and choosing the right size for you – our all-female team at our on-site certified operating room is all about helping you make the right decision. We are conveniently located in Brier Creek in Raleigh, next to the RDU airport.
We are happy to care for our local folks who are looking for the best plastic surgeon for them in Raleigh, Cary, Durham, Chapel Hill and those of you from surrounding areas like Apex, Morrisville, Garner, Knightdale, Graham, Roxboro, Fayetteville, Winston-Salem, Benson, Wake Forest, Oxford, Henderson, Roanoke Rapids, Clayton, and our military families in Fort Bragg. We also see folks traveling greater distances to find the best plastic surgeons for them in the North Carolina and South Carolina Coasts and Southern Virginia, like Greenville, Myrtle Beach and Danville. Be sure to mention how far you drive to see me during our consultation so we can plan out your recovery specifically as it pertains to you.
Ready to learn more about Breast Augmentation? Call (919) 797-0996 now to schedule a consultation with Dr. Tannan.