Breast reduction surgery, or mammoplasty, is performed for a number of reasons and has the potential to be truly life-changing and beneficial to the women who opt for this kind of procedure. This surgery can help women who are unhappy with the shape, weight or size of their breasts by making them smaller and more lifted.
The number of breast reduction surgeries has been on the rise, with a 5% increase in 2017 in the UK. Women may seek out breast reduction surgery for medical reasons, such as alleviating any physical problems caused by the current size of their breasts, ranging from backache and posture problem to rashes under the breasts and painful indentations on shoulders due to bra straps.
Alternatively, a woman may suffer negative psychological effects from having larger breasts. Low self-esteem and depression are common forms of emotional and psychological distress that can be caused by feeling that your chest is out of proportion to your height and weight. Mammoplasty can help to reduce the emotional distress and self-confidence issues caused by larger breasts.
Whilst the procedure is well-established and very safe, you need to ensure you perform the proper aftercare to minimise the risk of complications. Here are some answers to many of the burning questions you may have about recovering from this surgery.
What to Expect After Surgery
Once you’ve undergone breast reduction surgery, you should make sure you follow your Doctor’s instructions once you’re in recovery. The surgery will require you to stay one night in hospital. You will be supplied with different types of medication, such as pain killers. Make sure you follow the advice of your Doctor to ensure the best chance of a complication-free recovery.
When you wake from surgery you will either be wearing an elastic bandage or a surgical bra over the gauze and dressings. You should enlist in the help of a friend or family member to help you in the days right after the surgery, as it will be quite painful to raise your arms, and you might find it difficult to perform daily tasks.
How Long Will Recovery Take?
It can take two to six weeks to fully recover from the surgery. You may need to take some time off work. It is expected that you will have sore breasts for a few weeks, and the scars around the nipple will be red for the first six weeks, but most fade over time and should be invisible under normal clothing, bras and bikini tops.
Is There Anything That Should Be Avoided?
As with most surgeries, physical activity should be limited post-op. You should avoid any strenuous activity or heavy lifting for the first six weeks after surgery – heavy lifting includes lifting anything that would make you strain, such as large shopping bags or a child. In particular, you should avoid lifting things above your head.
You should avoid wearing a normal bra; a sports bra is recommended for the first six weeks following the procedure. After this stage you may find it more comfortable to avoid bras with underwiring for three months from the day of the surgery, as the skin under your breast can still be a little numb and underwire could cause a sore.
Driving should be avoided for the first week or two, as your range of motion may be limited and wearing a seatbelt may be painful. Any swelling in the breasts should completely subside after three to four weeks.
Is Breastfeeding Still Possible?
When you have breast reduction surgery, there are typically four steps involved with the procedure.
- Elevation – Careful consideration is taken as to where to place the nipple and areola, an incision is made around the circumference to allow for their repositioning.
- Reduction – An amount of tissue is removed from the lower breast.
- Glanduloplasty – The breast is then shaped by reducing its width.
- Skin tailoring – Scars are formed around the outside of the nipple, vertically from the nipple to the crease and underneath the breast.
Due to the way the nipples are repositioned with the breast tissue still attached, nipple sensitivity can be maintained in 9 out of 10 cases. The majority of women who have their breast reduction surgery done with us as Aesthetic Skin Clinic go on to breast-feed or continue to do so after the procedure.
Be sure to always follow the advice of your Doctor, every surgery is unique and listening to a medical professional can ensure your recovery is as smooth as possible. If you’re looking for breast reduction in Guernsey or breast reduction in Jersey, contact Aesthetic Skin Clinic today to find out about our procedure.