For a newly pregnant woman, there are seemingly endless considerations concerning what motherhood will bring. Will you deliver with a doctor or midwife? Sleep train or co-sleep? Breastfeed or formula feed? Beyond the basics, women with breast implants often have additional questions when it comes to their pregnancy. How might breast implants be affected? Is it possible to breastfeed after breast augmentation surgery? We want to tackle some of the most common concerns surrounding what to expect during and after your pregnancy if you have breast implants.
Is breastfeeding still an option for me?
Breastfeeding is a possibility for most new mothers with breast implants. Because implants are placed under the ducts that produce milk, the breastfeeding process isn’t disturbed in most cases. However, the type of incision used for the augmentation could pose complications in some cases. If your surgeon used a periareolar incision—a cut into the skin directly below the lower half of the areola—there is a slim possibility that the viability of the milk ducts may have been compromised.
Occasionally, issues may arise with decreased breast or nipple sensitivity, but the effect of implants on breastfeeding is typically minimal.
Will having breast implants impact my health or the health of my baby during pregnancy?
Having breast implants before, during, or after pregnancy does not affect the health of either baby or mother. Although the breasts may change dramatically during pregnancy, the durability and viability of the implants should not be affected.
Will getting pregnant ruin my breast augmentation?
Most women will see changes in their breasts during and after pregnancy. Changes in hormone levels cause the breasts to swell as pregnancy progresses and so you’ll notice an increase in breast volume as the body prepares for breastfeeding. After you are done with breastfeeding—or post-delivery if you decide to formula feed—the extra breast volume will gradually disappear.
These size fluctuations can permanently stretch and change the shape of the breasts somewhat. Many mothers notice a decrease in fullness in the upper part of the breasts, which is prone to volume loss post-pregnancy. For most women of childbearing age, however, these changes will not be dramatic enough to suddenly “ruin” a breast augmentation.
While augmented women will notice shape changes, many are still happy with their augmentation for years after pregnancy. Others seek a breast lift after they are done having kids to counteract the effects of aging and childbearing—as do many women without breast implants.
What can I do if I’m unhappy with how my breast implants look after pregnancy?
For women who are unhappy with how their augmented breasts look after pregnancy, there are options available. A breast lift is a great way to restore shape and lessen sagging when added volume isn’t necessary. The breast tissue is lifted and, if necessary, the nipple-areola complex is relocated, restoring a youthful shape to the breast. Some women choose to increase the size of their implants in conjunction with a breast lift. Because changes in the breasts vary from patient to patient, a consultation with an experienced plastic surgeon is the first step in identifying goals and developing a plan.
While pregnancy does often result in changes in the appearance of the breasts, there is nothing preventing moms from loving their breasts as much as they did before they were expecting. If you are looking for a little lift post-pregnancy, contact us today to schedule a personal consultation.