Massaging breast implants is an important step to ensure that the implants settle correctly and heal properly. If you don’t massage your implant following implantation, it can lead to more visible rippling which may make your breast look less attractive and the implant more visible.
Over time the massaging can help redistribute the implant and create a more balanced, symmetrical appearance. Problems with the capsule can also occur if the implants aren’t massaged. Without massage, the implant can become misaligned or asymmetrical in position leading to an unnatural looking breast shape.
Furthermore, without regular massage the capsule can tighten, causing capsular contracture (hardening of the tissue around the implant). Massage can also reduce risks of capsular contracture, which can be painful and cause further irregularities in shape.
All of these problems can be avoided if you perform regular massage on your implants. Massage should start soon after implantation and can be done several times a day for the first few weeks, then just once daily for the remainder of the healing period.
Do all breast implants need to be massaged?
The short answer is no; not all breast implants need to be massaged. However, for some patients, breast implants may need to be massaged regularly as part of their post-operative care and recovery. Generally speaking, breast implants should not be massaged unless instructed to do so by your physician.
Massaging of the breast implants may be necessary for patients who have implants placed under the muscle, as it helps with softening and settling of the implant. Massaging the implants can help with the displacement of the implant to its proper position while helping reduce capsular contracture (tightening of the scar tissue that forms around the implant).
Patients should complete the massage exercises their physician recommends and be sure to follow any instructions closely.
It is important to note that massage is not right for every implant type; in some cases, massage may actually displace or move the implant, resulting in undesirable aesthetic outcomes. Your physician can advise on whether massaging is necessary and communicate the proper technique.
It is important to note that massaging should never be done too vigorously, as this can cause further damage to the implant. Additionally, any sudden or dramatic changes to the area, such as a bump or pain in the breast, should be reported to your doctor.
When should you start massaging your implants?
It is generally recommended to wait at least four weeks after receiving your implants before you start massaging them. During the first few weeks after getting your implants, your body is going through a period of recovery and trying to heal from the surgery.
Massaging your implants too soon could disrupt the healing process, leading to delayed recovery and possibly even further complications.
It is important to follow your surgeon’s postoperative instructions carefully and wait until it’s safe to start massaging your implants. Once you have reached the four week mark, it’s then recommended to massage your implants once a day for five minutes at a time — using a gentle, circular motion — to help prevent capsular contracture (this is when the body forms scar tissue around the implant, which can cause the implant to become hard and misshapen).
It’s also important to note that if you’ve had any signs of infection, pain, or tenderness after your surgery, you should not massage your implants until any potential complications have been addressed by your surgeon.
Can a massage rupture a breast implant?
While it is highly unlikely that a massage will rupture a breast implant, there are some potential risks associated with massage therapy that should be discussed with your doctor prior to making an appointment.
Massage therapy, especially when done by an inexperienced or unskilled massage therapist, can cause trauma to the skin, underlying soft tissue, and implant, which could lead to implant rupture. Pressure and trauma to the implants may cause the implant shell to become damaged and cause the implant to break resulting in leaking of the implant contents into the body and the need for a revision breast surgery to remove and/or replace the damaged implant.
If you are considering massage therapy, you should discuss with your doctor about the risk associated with the procedure, and if any special precautions should be taken. Additionally, it is important to make sure to select a qualified, experienced, and well-reviewed massage therapist for the procedure.
In the event that you experience any discomfort, swelling, or other concerning symptoms, you should seek medical attention immediately and inform your doctor that massage may have been a factor.
How long does it take for breast implants to soften?
On average, it can take anywhere from three weeks to six months for breast implants to soften after being implanted. During this time, patients may experience increased firmness and tightness, as well as sensitivity along the implants.
This is normal and expected, and there is no need for alarm. It is important to note that the length of time needed for breast implants to soften may vary based on a variety of factors, including the type of implants used and the body’s individual healing process.
After proper healing, the breasts should feel softer and more natural appearing. Patients may need to wear a soft fabric bra or bralette, with or without support, during the healing period to provide extra comfort and support.
Additionally, you should discuss any concerns about the healing process with your doctor to make sure that everything is proceeding as expected.
How do I massage my breasts to prevent capsular contracture?
Massaging your breasts to prevent capsular contracture can be done through active and passive massage techniques. Active massage consists of using your hands to manipulate the breast tissue. You can do this by rubbing your fingers in small circles around the breast and surrounding areas, starting at the top and working downward.
Be sure to use light pressure and slow, gentle motions. This can help keep the implant pocket open and possibly delay the possibility of capsular contracture.
Another helpful massage technique is passive stretching, which involves applying gentle pressure to different areas of the breast, then releasing the pressure. Start from the top again, and slowly work your way down to the bottom of the breast crease.
Pay attention to any areas of tightness, and create gentle rhythmic stretches to help release the tension.
Finally, regular use of moisturizers and massaging oils can help keep skin soft and supple, which in turn can help prevent capsular contracture. Choose an oil with natural ingredients like sweet almond oil, coconut oil, or jojoba oil, and apply after bathing.
Make sure to avoid products that contain petroleum, as these can block skin pores, increase the risk of bacterial growth, and aggravate the capsular contracture.
By actively massaging your breasts with light pressure and stretching gently, you can help keep your implants in the optimal position and reduce your risk of developing capsular contracture.
What are the early signs of capsular contracture?
Capsular contracture is a condition often characterized by a hardening or squeezing of the area around a breast implant, which can cause pain and distortion of the breast shape. Early signs of capsular contracture include palpable firmness or tightness around the implant, visible changes to the shape of the breast (such as asymmetry or an unnatural appearance), an increase in the size of the implant pocket, tenderness, pain, and changes to the breast’s skin texture.
If left untreated, further signs of capsular contracture may develop such as nipple malposition, visible rippling of the implant, an unnatural appearance to the breast (such as an ‘alien’-like look due to a hardened pocket) and overall breast deformity.
If you notice any of these early signs of capsular contracture, it is important to seek medical advice and diagnosis with a board-certified plastic surgeon right away. Depending on the severity, treatment may range from making simple changes to your lifestyle and bra size changes to replacing the implant, or ruptured implant repair.
Addressing an early warning sign of capsular contracture will help prevent greater complications with your breast augmentation, both in terms of health and aesthetics.
How easily do breast implants rupture?
Breast implants can sometimes rupture or tear due to age, trauma, or medical conditions such as connective tissue disorders. The likelihood of a rupture depends on the type of implant used, as well as how it has been cared for and treated.
Saline implants are composed of a silicone shell filled with saltwater, so the risk of a rupture is lower than with a silicone gel implant. However, it’s still possible for them to break, since the material is not as strong as other types of implants.
Silicone gel implants are made from a semi-solid material, and are more likely to develop a tear or rupture. It can take years for a rupture to occur, but it’s important to be aware that it could happen.
Regular visits with your doctor for MRI scans or diagnostic ultrasounds can help detect any changes in the implant.
If a rupture does occur, the saline will be safely absorbed by the body, and the implant will naturally deflate. With a silicone gel implant, removing the gel may be necessary as it can cause inflammation or granuloma.
If the material has spread, removal or surgery may be required. Overall, it’s important to be aware that a rupture could happen, and to contact your doctor if you notice any changes or concerns.
What does it feel like when your breast implant ruptures?
Having a breast implant rupture can be quite distressing and uncomfortable. On a physical level, many people report experiencing a sudden, sharp pain near the breast implant. Others may notice a general feeling of discomfort and soreness in the area.
Some people also report feeling a sloshing or squishing sensation. Depending on the degree of leakage, the breast may also become swollen and appear abnormally shaped. The area may also become warm to the touch and discolored.
If a rupture is accompanied by a breast infection, additional symptoms may include redness, warmth, drainage, and tenderness. Generally speaking, the severity of a rupture’s symptoms varies depending on the amount of leakage, the surrounding tissue and the placement of the implant.
As such, it is important to seek medical attention if you suspect you have a ruptured implant.
Can implants rupture easily?
Implants can rupture, but it is not common. Ruptures are most likely to occur in silicone gel implants and occur when the shell of the implant is weakened. This weakening can be caused by being placed too close to the skin’s surface, leading to increased wear and tear, or due to aging of the implant itself.
Ruptures can also occur if your implant is placed under the muscle and is too large for the pocket created. Other causes may include trauma from an accident or from getting injectable treatments near the implant.
When a rupture occurs, it is usually painless and difficult to detect. Therefore, it’s recommended that patients with implants get regular check-ups with their doctor to ensure the implants are functioning properly.
If a rupture is detected, you’ll likely need to have the implant removed and replaced. It’s important to note that implants are not intended to last a lifetime and will need to be replaced at some point.
Therefore, it’s best to be aware of the risks of implant rupture and to take the necessary precautions to help reduce your risk.
Can you mess up breast augmentation?
Yes, it is possible to mess up a breast augmentation procedure. Although skilled and experienced cosmetic surgeons will perform the surgery and it is very safe, complications may still occur. This could include infection, scarring, unevenly shaped breasts, unsatisfactory size or shape of the implants, or nerve and muscle damage.
There is also a risk of long-term health issues and breast pain. If any of these post-surgery complications occur, it is important to speak with your surgeon to determine the best course of action for correcting the issue.
How do you know if your breast implant has dropped?
When your breast implant has dropped, you should notice that your breast shape has changed significantly. Your mid-breast cleavage may become deeper and the implant may appear to be sitting lower in your chest than before.
You should also notice your nipples are pointing downward more than expected. This sagging can affect both breasts, creating a perfect symmetry in your chest, though it may be more noticeable on one side than the other.
In some cases, the breasts may feel heavier than before, and your clothing may fit differently. If you are unsure if your implant has dropped, it is best to talk to your surgeon to confirm. Your surgeon can also offer advice about potential treatments for implant dropping if it is necessary for your particular case.
Can you tear a breast implant pocket?
Yes, it is possible to tear a breast implant pocket. This occurs when too much pressure is applied to the chest wall or when the surgeon has stretched the pocket too thin during the surgery. If the pocket surrounding a breast implant is torn, the implant can become displaced and move to another area of the chest.
This can cause pain and discomfort, and it may also affect the appearance of the breasts. A torn implant pocket will need to be repaired with a surgical procedure if it causes issues, such as a deformity or pain.
During the surgery, the pocket will be repaired and, if the implant is out of place, the surgeon will move it back into the correct position. It is important to speak to a doctor if you think you may have torn your breast implant pocket.
What to do if unhappy with breast augmentation?
If you are unhappy with the results of your breast augmentation, it is important to speak with your surgeon. Your surgeon will be able to assess your situation and talk with you about what can be done, if anything.
Depending on the issue, it may be possible to change the size or shape of your implants, re-position the implant or even remove and replace the implants. Some issues, like scarring or changes in breast tissue due to aging, may be impossible to reverse.
In any case, it is important to discuss any issues you are having with your doctor, who can help you decide the best course of action. It is also important to keep in mind that the outcome of a breast augmentation can take several weeks or even months to become apparent.
In some cases, issues that you may not initially be pleased with may improve over time.
What is the most common complication of breast augmentation surgery?
The most common complication associated with breast augmentation surgery is capsular contracture. This is a condition where the capsule of scar tissue that forms around the implant tightens, resulting in hardening of the breast and noticeable distortion of the shape of the breast.
Other potential complications may include infection, asymmetry, implant displacement, implant rupture, and/or changes in sensation or appearance of the breast/nipple. These complications are rare but can occur, so it’s important to discuss the potential risks with your doctor before proceeding with surgery.
In addition to these potential complications, cancer risks exist. Although Dr. Baxter has conducted extensive research, it is still not definitively known whether breast implants increase the risk of breast cancer.
However, it is important to note that the FDA requires manufacturers of silicone gel-filled implants to monitor and document certain complications, including cancer, for patients who receive their implants for the lifetime of the implants.
As such, it’s important to discuss all possible risks with your doctor prior to undergoing breast augmentation surgery.