Hey guys! So I’m exactly 6 days post op, and I’ve been feeling pretty good.
I started my recovery at the hospital with a lot of physical therapy and pain management. They did an amazing job of making me feel comfortable and safe, and they made sure to answer any questions we had about the procedure and our recovery.
I was nervous going into the surgery because I’d never had any kind of surgery before, but it really wasn’t as big a deal as I thought it would be. My doctor did an amazing job explaining what to expect during and after surgery, which helped me relax a lot more than I would have if he hadn’t told me about everything that was going on.
The next day I was able to go home with my husband, who stayed with me for the first few days so that he could help me get around and make sure everything went smoothly (he even brought in meals from places like Chipotle!). After being home for just one night, however, we realized that we needed more help than either one of us could provide—so we decided to move in with my parents until our follow-up appointment on Wednesday evening (today).
6 days post op breast augmentation
What’s It Like to Recover from Breast Augmentation Surgery?
Breast augmentation recovery stages
Finding a surgeon
Breast augmentation is a surgery that increases the size of a person’s breasts. It’s also known as augmentation mammoplasty.
In most surgeries, implants are used to enhance breast size. Fat from another part of the body can also be used, but this method is less common.
People typically get this surgery to:
enhance physical appearance
reconstruct the breast after a mastectomy or another breast surgery
adjust uneven breasts due to surgery or another condition
increase breast size after pregnancy or breastfeeding
People seeking male-to-female or male-to-nonbinary top surgery might also get breast augmentation.
Generally, recovery takes about 6 to 8 weeks. It may take more time depending on how you heal and your overall health. Every person is different, so it’s best to talk to a surgeon if you’re concerned about the recovery process.
Read on to learn about what you can expect during breast augmentation recovery.
Breast augmentation recovery time
In most cases, recovery lasts about 6 to 8 weeks. Here’s what the timeline may look like:
Immediately after surgery
Most breast augmentation surgeries involve general anesthesia. This means you’re asleep during the procedure.
Once the surgery is done, you’ll be transferred to a recovery room. You’ll slowly wake up as a team of medical professionals monitors you. You’ll likely feel achy and groggy.
If the implants were placed under the pectoralis muscle, you may experience tightness or muscle aches in the area. As the muscles stretches and relaxes, the pain will decrease.
Hours after surgery
After a few hours, you’ll feel less sore and sleepy.
You can usually go home after several hours, but you’ll need someone to drive you.
Before you leave, your surgeon will wrap your breasts with a bra or elastic band. This will support your breasts during recovery. Your surgeon will also explain how to care for your incision sites.
3 to 5 days
During the first 3 to 5 days, you’ll likely experience the most discomfort. Your doctor will have prescribed medication to help control the pain.
You might have minor bleeding at the incision sites. This is normal. But if you’re concerned about any bleeding, talk to your surgeon.
As you approach 1 week, you may be able to manage the pain with over-the-counter pain medications.
The pain should be minimal after the first week.
With your surgeon’s approval, you can gradually return to light daily activities.
Next few weeks
During this time, you’ll still have some soreness and swelling. But it should slowly get better.
If you have a physically demanding job, you’ll need to be out of work for 3 weeks or more. You’ll also need to avoid heavy lifting and intense physical activities, like running.
After about 2 months, you should be nearing full recovery, though this depends on how well your body heals.
Your doctor will let you know if you can resume normal activities.
As with all types of surgery, breast augmentation poses potential complications.
General surgery complications include scarring, wound infections, and bleeding problems, like blood loss. It’s also possible to go into shock or develop issues related to blood clots.
Anesthesia can also trigger an allergic reaction, but this is rare.
Complications specific to breast augmentation include:
scarring that changes the breast shape
undesired or poor cosmetic results
nipple changes in appearance
breast or nipple sensation changes
breasts appear to merge (symmastia)
incorrect position of implant
implant is seen or felt through the skin
skin wrinkling over the implant
fluid accumulation (seroma)
scarring around the implant (capsular contracture)
implant leak or break
breast implant-associated anaplastic large cell lymphoma
breast implant illness
To heal some of these complications, you may need surgery to replace or remove the implants.
On average, breast implants last about 10 years before the shell ruptures or leaks. You’ll eventually need surgery to replace or remove them.
Types of breast augmentation surgery
There are two main kinds of breast augmentation:
Cosmetic breast implants. A silicone or saline implant is inserted behind the breast tissue or below the pectoralis, or pushup, muscle.
Reconstructive surgery. If your breasts were removed in another surgery, breast implants or fat tissue from another part of the body can be used to rebuild them.
Breast augmentation can be combined with a breast lift, or mastopexy. This surgery changes the shape of your breasts, but it doesn’t alter the size.
Tips for a healthy recovery
Successful breast augmentation depends on how well you heal. To increase the chances of a smooth recovery, you can:
Wear recovery bras. Follow your doctor’s instructions. Recovery bras provide support and manage pain and swelling.
Care for your incisions. Depending on your surgeon’s preference, you may have to wear a bandage or apply ointment. Always follow the directions.
Take your medication. During the first week, pain medication will help you feel more comfortable. If your doctor prescribed antibiotics, take the entire course.
Prepare your home before surgery. Before the procedure, finish any housework and meal prep. You’ll need to rest when you’re back home in recovery.
Wear loose clothes. Loose-fitting, breathable clothes will help you feel more comfortable.
Avoid intense activity. Strenuous movement can delay the healing process.
Eat nutritious foods. A healthy diet will help your body recover. Consume lots of lean protein, fruits, and vegetables.
breast reduction recovery tips
Recovery Tips – Breast Reduction Surgery
Breast reduction surgery is just as invasive and significant as augmentation surgery, and as such, it is equally as important that you take the necessary preparations for your recovery. Studies show that patients that prepare for their recovery period are substantially more likely to recover swiftly and with minimal complications. They also tend to have the best overall result from their surgical procedure.
To help ensure that your breast reduction surgery recuperation is as smooth and straightforward, here are our post recovery tips.
Don’t be afraid to ask for support
There is nothing wrong with being fiercely independent, but there are occasions whereby a little support and assistance really is the best thing for you. This is particularly true after you have undergone a surgical procedure. Rest is one of the key elements of a good recovery, but this is something that is tricky to do if you need to do everything for yourself. If you can, make sure your significant other or a friend or family member is available to help you in the first 72 hours after your procedure. This could include all manner of tasks, from waking you for medications to preparing food for you or taking your children to school. If you are largely on your own, at least make sure you have people checking in with you regularly.
Take your pain medications as directed
Some people have a real aversion to taking pain medication, but since breast reduction surgery is invasive, it is unrealistic to expect that you won’t be in any discomfort in the days after your procedure. Your surgeon will prescribe you moderate pain relief and this should be taken as directed. Don’t wait until you are in agony before ‘giving in’ and taking your medication. Studies show that people who are in pain have a much slower rate of healing so you could only be prolonging your discomfort.
Finish your course of antibiotics
You will almost certainly be given a course of antibiotics to take home with you. These are a preventative to help keep infection at bay. However, many patients may start out taking them as directed and quickly start skipping doses. For proper protection against infection, make sure you finish the course.
Drink plenty of water
Water is the single most important thing that we can put into our bodies and it is particularly important in the aftermath of a surgical procedure such as a breast reduction. Initially, water will help to remove all traces of the anesthesia from your body. However, during your recovery it will prevent you from retaining too much fluid, reduce the risk of constipation which is common when on pain medications, and ensure your cells are properly hydrated and capable of healing.
It can be very tempting to give in and eat all of our favorite unhealthy foods when we are feeling rough. However, it is important that you continue to eat healthily during your recovery so that your body has all of the nutrients needed to help you heal as swiftly as possible. Many people prepare for this by cooking and freezing nutritional meals in advance, which eliminates the stress of preparation but ensures that you still get all the goodness you need to get back on your feet.
Don’t spend all your time laying down
Speaking of getting back on your feet, it is crucial that you start moving around as soon as you can after your surgery. Any physical exertion will be off the table for a number of weeks, but gently and slowly walking around will help improve your circulation, sending oxygen-rich blood cells to the incisions so that they can heal. Regularly moving around will also reduce your risk of developing a potentially dangerous blood clot.
Don’t take your compression garment off too soon
Your breasts will be wrapped in a compression garment immediately after your surgery. This will help support your breasts so that the incisions aren’t stretched and can heal properly, as well as controlling swelling and inflammation. Although it may not be the most flattering garment in the world, it is important and therefore you shouldn’t stop wearing it until you are given permission by your surgical team.
The single most important thing after any surgery is to follow the instructions given to you by your surgical team. They have the experience and knowledge to be able to advise you what will help you to have a successful recovery, and what could cause complications and compromise the results of your procedure. If you would like more post recovery tips for breast reduction surgery, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with our experienced team.