Many woman after cosmetic breast augmentation will say to me, “I never want to wear a bra again!” It’s usually something said when they are happy with the operative results. They are happy with the increased size and volume, the improved shape and perkiness, and the overall appearance of their breasts. They will say, “I don’t need a bra!” However, it’s extremely important to wear a supportive bra. This educational writing will review post operative care and the why, how, and when this is important after breast enlargement. This was written in response to a patient’s inquiry’s from Philadelphia, PA. Click here for additional information on bras.
With great power comes great responsibility! This line from the end of the first Spider Man movie can be used by me to convey to a woman what is important after her surgery. She might not like wearing a bra or support after the procedure. But with the “great power” of new breast implants comes the “great responsibility” of wearing the bras. The results of this operative can and often does make a woman feel very happy, confident, and attractive. The satisfaction can sometimes be immense. Some patients will actually say they have a new power. I’ve joked that it’s called “boob power.” But with this power comes a responsibility. This responsibility is supportive bras.
Why are bras important after cosmetic enhancement? The answer is that they may help minimize problems or complications in the future, such as hanging of the breasts. Breast augmentation has risks. These are reviewed by me in detail with all my patients before surgery. One problem that can happen is hanging or shape change in the future. Breast implants often start out high. This is because most are placed beneath the muscle, and the muscle pushes the implant up. This is the beginning of settling or dropping that happens after the surgery. This process takes about 1-3 months to finish, although sometimes longer. After the settling is done, some woman will drop too low. If the implants drop too low, it can change the appearance and not be as attractive as desired. In my opinion, supportive bras can help minimize this risk after surgery. They work by being anti-gravity. The bra helps lift the implant and the breast. By diminishing this weight, the risk of the dropping or hanging is minimized.
How do I wear a bra? It might sound like a weird question, because every woman knows how this is done. But after augmentation surgery, the idea is to elevate the implant, not just the breast which is overlying the implant. The pressure of the bra or the support of the bra needs to be down near the crease of the breast. If the bra is worn correctly, you will see the outline of the top of the implant move up. If this is done, you are taking the weight off the bottom of the pocket and decreasing the chance of hanging. It is the weight of the implant over time that stretches the pocket. This process is sometimes called bottoming out. It’s also known as “dropping out of the pocket.” Bras work by providing support or elevation at this important location to decrease the chance of this happening. Please see the two photos outlining these concepts.
When do I wear a bra after my cosmetic breast procedure? I recommend it be worn at all times. Initially, I recommend that patients wear a sports bra for one month. The bra should be soft, no wires, and no pads. I describe it as an old-fashioned sports bra. It is also worn for a month to allow the incision to slowly heal and to not cause pain. After a month, other bras are allowed. I recommend ones that are really supportive. This will help the healing. One patient aid to me, “You want me to really jack them up!” This is a funny but an honest way to describe it. Bras should even be worn at night. Gravity works at night too. The gravity pushes the breasts to the sides and sleep positions push the implants around. So sports bras are recommended at night as well to decrease the possibility of future hanging.
In summary, this educational writing has focused on the why, how, and when should a woman wear a bra after cosmetic breast augmentation. I work on reviewing,in detail, all aspects of their breast enhancement surgery. I review options, technical aspects, recovery, risks, and different breast implants. Please come in for a complimentary consultation to discuss your possible surgery.