So you’re thinking about taking the plunge and getting breast implant surgery. You’re by no means the only woman considering it. It’s estimated around 400,000 women a year get breast implants.
While this is a routine cosmetic procedure, there are a number of things you should consider before getting breast implant surgery. We’ve put together a list of the 7 biggest considerations for you before you go under the knife.
1. Breast Implant Surgery Cost
One of the most frequently asked questions plastic surgeons get is how much is breast implant surgery. It goes without saying, prices will vary depending on the surgeon you choose to do your procedure. More in-demand surgeons with more experience will charge more for the procedure than others.
This said, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the average cost in 2019 was around $3,947.
This figure only tells part of the story though. It excludes additional costs such as hospital facility costs, post-surgery garments, prescriptions, and even anesthesia fees.
With these included, a ballpark figure for breast implant surgery is more like $5,000 to $10,000. As the vast majority of breast implant surgeries are cosmetic, most medical insurance will not cover the cost. So ensure you have the funds you need beforehand.
2. Different Types of Breast Implants
You’ll also need to consider which type of breast implant material you want, as there are quite a few to pick from. The most popular are silicone, saline, cohesive gel, and autologous fat.
Each will give you a slightly different result in terms of aesthetics, feel, and weight. Saline implants ripple more, which can create visible wrinkles under your skin. While for autologous fat implants, you’ll often need touch-up surgery to get symmetrical breasts.
Silicone implants tend to be regarded as the most natural feeling and best at holding their shape. This is why they remain such a popular choice for patients.
Your chosen surgeon should be able to guide you through the various implant types they offer. They’ll discuss the aesthetic you want to achieve and recommend which implant material would achieve the best results for you.
3. Implants Aren’t Forever
It surprises many women to learn that breast implants don’t last forever.
There are lots of factors that come into how long breast implants will last. Things like weight changes, breastfeeding and aging can all change the way your breasts look. Your implant may also begin to leak or develop a scar shell.
In a best-case scenario, the majority of breast implants need to be changed around 12 to 15 years after the initial surgery. You need to budget accordingly for this additional cost after your initial breast implant surgery.
4. Different Types of Incision
There are four main types of incisions used in breast surgeries:
- Trans-umbilical breast augmentation (TUBA)
Areolar refers to the incision being made around the areola, while inframammary incisions are made in the crease under your breast. Transaxillary incisions are in your armpit. Finally, TUBA refers to the incision being made in your stomach.
The most common incision types would be transaxillary and areolar. But if you have very small areolas, this may prevent this from being an option for you.
All types of incision will likely leave some very light scarring. So figuring out where you’d prefer potential scarring to be is an important consideration before undergoing breast surgery.
Your chosen surgeon should be able to explain all this to you, as well as advice on any potential scarring.
5. Bigger Isn’t Always Better
If you’re getting breast implant surgery because you want bigger breasts, you need to set realistic expectations. For instance, if you’re an A cup, you can’t change to a double D through one procedure. If any surgeon suggests you can, this should be a major red flag about the quality of work.
Your skin and body will need time to adjust to change. Putting in too large an implant can cause permanent stretching for your skin and muscles. A good surgeon will usually only allow a couple of cup increments at a time.
This isn’t to say you can never get to your dream cup size by any means. You’ll just need to plan and budget for multiple surgeries to do so.
Your doctor should advise you on the maximum cup size you can expect, based on your anatomy. Any doctor who does not do this should be avoided. It can lead to complications, pain, and corrective surgery down the line.
6. Quick Recovery Time
Back to better news, most women find that they don’t need much time off for recovery after breast surgery. Barring any complications, you should only need around five to seven days of rest before you can head back to work.
Although, this is dependent on the type of work you do. If you work in manual labor you should expect to be off work longer. Similarly, you’ll want to avoid all exercise for around four to six weeks.
While the recovery time is quick for such a large procedure, you’ll still need help. In the first few days, have a friend or family member come stay with you. They can help with simple tasks like eating and taking your pain medications.
7. Not All Surgeons Are Board-Certified
It might surprise you to learn that not all plastic surgeons are certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery.
This is why it’s so important to do your research to find a great surgeon with experience that you trust. You can meet with as many surgeons as you like until you find one you feel comfortable with. Never allow yourself to feel pressured into going with a particular surgeon.
You should look at examples of their previous work. This can be by going on their website or through their social media presence. You can even ask to speak to former patients.
Be wary of surgeons who are certified with other boards. They aren’t legitimate and it may suggest a lack of experience or poor quality of work.
While these are some of the big considerations of breast implant surgery, there are plenty more we haven’t mentioned. Remember to do plenty of research and consultations before you commit to any procedure.
You can find more helpful health advice on our blog.