Congratulations! You’ve just made a life-changing decision to look and feel your best, and you’re on your way to your new self! But you’re going to go through some ups and downs while you recover from breast augmentation surgery before you get your full results. Thankfully, Dr. Barrett has curated a whole host of breast augmentation recovery tips, best practices, next steps, what you should expect, things you should be concerned about, as well as what to do and what not to do while you recover from your breast augmentation.
- Big stretch. Due to all the numbing medications used during your breast augmentation, you shouldn’t have a lot of pain, but you might feel a little uncomfortable, and you’ll experience a stretching sensation. This should subside as the first night progresses and get better by the next day. If you are experiencing any pain, you can take Tylenol or CBD oil. Dr. Barrett recommends (and personally uses) Barrett Recovery CBD to all his plastic surgery patients.
- Leave the surgical bra off. Dr. Barrett rarely puts patients in surgical bras because they can cut off circulation and he wants blood supply to reach the breasts. A t-shirt or loose-fitting sports bra is best for your breast augmentation recovery.
- Lose the patch. Take off the scopolamine patch behind your ear as soon as you get home—but make sure not to touch your eye and wash your hands immediately after doing so. Leaving it on will cause blurry vision.
- Take your antibiotics as soon as you get home, and make sure to finish the full course—most infections occur when patients don’t take all their antibiotics as prescribed.
- Don’t panic. Your implants aren’t going to look normal right away, so if you look down and think, “oh, no what have I done?”, don’t worry. You shouldn’t expect them to look pretty until at least six weeks after your breast augmentation when your implants drop and fluff.
- Free the boobs. Put your bra aside for at least two weeks, or until your surgeon gives you the OK at your post-op visit.
- A little bleeding is normal in the first 24 hours, so don’t worry if you see a little blood!
- Steri-strip 411. It’s OK if your steri-strips fall off; you can simply replace them with a band-aid. Swelling may occur, causing a blister to form under your steri-strip—this is totally OK; just apply antibiotic ointment twice a day and the strip will be removed in-office. If you develop an allergic reaction to your steri-strips, remove them all, wash with gentle soap and water and take Benadryl or Claritin. Avoid steroids or hydrocortisone.
- Yes, it’s normal. Swelling, bruising, anxiety and even depression are all normal after breast augmentation surgery.
- Get moving. Doing some light (emphasis on light) walking three times a day can help, so can sunlight and especially exposure to red light therapy through a device like LightStim
- Speaking of red lights. Red light or stim light therapy used right after surgery and beyond, can help significantly with swelling, bruising and even with scarring because it penetrates the body at the cellular level with specific wavelengths of light, reducing inflammation and supporting tissue repair and regeneration.
- Dos and don’ts:
- Do take a shower 24 hours after your breast augmentation surgery. Don’t take a bath, go in a hot tub, swim, or get into any body of water. The bacteria and pressure of the water can cause an infection.
- Do be your healthiest self. Things like meditation to lower stress, avoiding smoking for at least six weeks and avoiding any alcohol for at least two weeks will all help aid in your breast augmentation recovery
- Beauty sleep. For the first three nights, sleep with your back upright to help some off the initial swelling go down. After that, you may sleep flat on your back. Avoid sleeping on your side until the seven-day mark and on your stomach until six weeks post op.
- Stretch marks? Coco butter and vitamin E placed far away from your incisions can help prevent any stretch marks from appearing.
- Work it out—or don’t (at first).
- For the first two weeks, just do some light waking. You don’t want to raise your heartrate, so no strenuous activities. Don’t lift anything over eight pounds, and make sure to use both hands if you have to lift anything eight pounds or lighter.
- After two weeks, you can resume some exercise: walking upstairs, incline workouts, isolated leg workouts. Avoid any upper body workouts.
- After four weeks and beyond, you can do some jogging with a supportive bra. And at week six, you can resume upper body workouts.
- Most importantly, pay attention to your body! If something hurts, take a day or two off before easing back.
- Accessorize. You may put any existing nipple piercings back in immediately after surgery, but wait at least six weeks for any new piercings, tattoos or waxes.
- More normalcy:
- Pain, burning sensations, localized tingles and discomfort are also all normal and will all go away after six week.
- Nipple numbness, sensitivity or hypersensitivity will start to normalize as you progress in your breast augmentation recovery, though may take up to six months to do so.
How painful is breast augmentation recovery?
Any pain or discomfort should be easily relieved by taking Tylenol or CBD. Prescription pain medication is also given as a backup, should your pain exceed the relief of Tylenol or CBD. You shouldn’t feel much pain, and most patients describe their breast augmentation surgery recovery as more uncomfortable than painful.
How long is the recovery for a breast augmentation?
With breast augmentation surgery, you should expect three days of solid downtime and relative downtime for at least two weeks. You can expect pain, swelling and sensitivity for a few weeks, but it should subside enough within the first few days to allow you to return to most of your activities without significant discomfort.
Finally, to ensure you have the best possible outcome, Dr. Barrett has curated a breast augmentation recovery kit to set his breast augmentation patients up for surgical success with the least amount of down time and discomfort possible.
Note: The following video is intended for only Dr. Barrett’s patients exclusively. If you have had surgery by another surgeon please follow up with that surgeon for particular details about your surgery.
You can also check out this video to hear tips, tricks and post-op instructions from Dr. Barrett himself.