What to Expect Directly After Your Breast Augmentation

Beautiful woman is lying in her bed in white lingerie

Breast augmentation can transform your shape and your self-confidence. While most of our breast augmentation patients in Boston are excited about the procedure, many are also a bit anxious about what to expect following the surgery.

Being nervous about a surgical procedure is natural. To help ease your mind about what to expect, I’ll answer some common questions about how patients feel after surgery and offer some tips for making your recovery as comfortable and successful as possible.

What’s normal directly after breast augmentation?

Directly following your breast augmentation procedure, you may feel groggy; this is more likely when you have had general anesthesia, as opposed to twilight sedation. Although a general anesthetic may make you feel a little woozy, it is considered much safer than twilight anesthesia, or sedation, because an anesthesiologist (MD) is present and monitoring you the entire time. After anesthesia you may feel some nausea; this can be addressed with anti-nausea medications.

How will I feel after breast augmentation?

You may experience fatigue. In order to heal, your body requires more energy. During your recovery from breast augmentation surgery, you may experience some additional, unexpected/unusual fatigue. You may tire more quickly than usual. This is especially true if your breast augmentation was part of a Mommy Makeover combination of procedures.

Your breasts may feel engorged. For about a week after your breast augmentation surgery, your breasts may feel heavy and tender. In fact, many women compare the discomfort associated with breast augmentation surgery to that of when one’s milk comes “in” or when one is engorged. Don’t worry, this pain improves remarkably within several days.

Morning stiffness is common. During your recovery from breast augmentation surgery, morning stiffness is expected. However, once you begin to move around, the stiffness usually dissipates. This stiffness generally persists for 1 to 2 weeks after your breast augmentation procedure.

You may feel pressure with submuscular implant placement. If you are having a submuscular placement of your breast augmentation procedure/implants at our surgical center, your saline or silicone breast implants are placed beneath your pectoralis muscles. Following this type of breast augmentation surgery, many patients experience pressure or a tight feeling in their chest.

What can I do to ease my recovery?

Remain active. While recovering from your breast augmentation procedure, you will need to get up and move around. It is important to get out of bed and move around at least one time per waking hour. Staying active reduces the likelihood of blood clots, excessive soreness, and stiffness. That said, do not push yourself; listen to your body. This lack of energy and/or fatigue may last for several weeks.

Fight constipation with mild laxatives. You will receive pain medication following your breast augmentation procedure with Dr. Davidson. Many times, pain medication causes constipation. Dr. Davidson may recommend a mild laxative. Typical laxative choices include Colace, senna, and Milk of Magnesia. It is important to take a laxative prophylactically post-operatively to decrease your chances of developing significant constipation.

Don’t slump. While recovering from your breast augmentation surgery you may find yourself walking as if you are trying to protect your chest by leaning your shoulders forward. This posture can lead to back pain.

The American Board of Plastic Surgeons also offers helpful information about breast augmentation recovery.

Learning how to dress your new shape is also important during your recovery, and bra shopping after breast augmentation is an important milestone. While you’re recovering, it’s helpful to keep these long-term goals in mind.

Does the type of implant I select affect how my breasts feel after surgery?

Because there are several differences between saline and silicone implants, many of our patients are not sure which of these implants will accomplish the look they desire.

Silicone Implants. Silicone implants are beneficial for patients with limited soft tissue coverage, and they offer patients a softer, more natural feel. Dr. Davidson can help you decide which implant to choose.

Saline Implants. Saline implants are filled after insertion. Once inserted, Dr. Davidson inflates the implant using sterile saline at our Boston plastic surgery center.

Your breast size may help determine whether silicone or saline implants should be used during your breast augmentation. Dr. Davidson can help you choose which implants are best for you. For example:

If you wear an A cup bra—If you want your breasts to be considerably larger, silicone implants may feel more natural.

If you wear a C cup bra—Both silicone and saline breast implants can give you the larger breasts you desire.

You can see some examples of my real patients’ results by viewing our breast augmentation before-and-after photo gallery.

If you want to reshape your curves with breast implants, contact us using our online form or by calling us at (781) 237-7700.

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