So you’ve decided to get a breast augmentation surgery to enhance the aesthetics of your breasts, but what happens after? While it’s easy to assume that you’ll be enjoying this new look without anything to worry about, it won’t hurt to give your new breasts some TLC. It’s true that breast implants are fairly low maintenance, but a proper upkeep will minimize risks of issues like rippling, leaks, etc. Take a look at some of the tips that will help you in maintaining your breast implants:
Source: National Cancer Institute
- Regular check-ups to protect your breast health – Whether you’ve gotten breast implants or not, your breast health is a crucial part of your regular health check-up. Breast exams and mammograms can detect early signs of issues with your breasts such as cancer. In your 20s and 30s, you need to get a professional breast exam every three years. From age 40 onwards, you will need to go for a clinical breast exam on a yearly basis.
- Regular massaging/compression exercises – Compression exercises and massages are popularly recommended to maintain breast implants. Basically, you will need to push the implant towards the edges of the pocket successively for a few times. The exercise involves moving the implant in all directions – up, down, left, and right. When doing this exercise, make sure you hold the implant in place for a few seconds in each direction.
Why is this exercise necessary, you ask? You might have seen or heard of women developing scars around the implant after their breast augmentation surgery. With these compression exercises, you minimize the risk of developing such scar tissues and ensure that your new natural-looking implants remain that way. Normally, you need to start with the exercises one week after the operation but the recommendation may vary. So it’s best to talk to your surgeon regarding a specific schedule or routine you need to follow.
- What to watch out for – Leaks and ruptures are some risks involved in breast augmentation surgery. If not taken care of immediately, the leak can result in complications like infection. Generally, leaks may occur only 20-25 years after the implants but there’s always a risk of facing the issue prematurely. This is especially true if the procedure was originally carried out by a less-experienced surgeon.While you can immediately detect it when saline-filled implants rupture, that’s not the case with silicone-gel implants. So according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, it’s best to get an MRI three years after the surgery and then every two years after that. This will help in detecting silent ruptures and take action before it’s too late. Additionally, you must immediately consult your surgeon if you notice that your implants are gradually hardening. In the early stages, this issue can easily be fixed using non-surgical methods. You should also watch out for bottoming out, which is when the implant slips down and moves lower on the chest. This issue can occur with time but is easy to treat if detected early.
- Preparing for dental work – You may be wondering what dental work has to do with your breast implants. Although breast augmentation is one of the most popular types of plastic surgeries, only a few women try to educate themselves on what they should be aware of after the procedure. It’s highly recommended that you prepare with antibiotics before undergoing a dental procedure. The reason for this is because there are plenty of bacteria and plaque in your gums, which can be released into your bloodstream and result in infection. Foreign bodies such as breast implants can be their biggest targets, meaning you need to be prepared for such incidents. Make it a priority to discuss preventative options with your dentist and your surgeon.
- Getting implants replaced – When something’s wrong with your current implants, you naturally will have to get them replaced. However, avoid going for a replacement just for the heck of it. It’s best to leave your implants alone and as is. The only cases in which you should get replacements are if there’s an issue with your current ones or if you need a size change.
Now you’ve got some extensive advice on how to maintain your breast implants. You must remember that the tips given above aren’t just for maintaining the aesthetic aspects of your breasts but also for ensuring long-term breast health.
Renu Sharma is an Inbound Consultant at The Maercks Institute, a Plastic Surgery Institute. She is a health and fitness lover who loves to share her ideas on health, fitness and beauty. You can check her out on Twitter and LinkedIn.