After having children, losing weight, or simply aging, your breasts may begin to sag and become looser. Your breasts may even be genetically predisposed to laxity. Rather than having round, perky breasts, you may simply have breasts which have always been loose and lacked fullness. If you feel your breasts are the right size, a breast lift can redefine your breast shape to make you appear younger and healthier.
Breast Lift Before & AftersThis page contains some basic information about the breast lift procedure, but the best way to determine whether you are a good breast lift candidate is through a personal discussion with a plastic surgeon. To talk to one of our Marietta plastic surgeons, please call or email us today to schedule a breast surgery consultation at our Marietta or Woodstock locations.
Effects of Sagging Breasts
If you are like many women, your breasts are an important part of not just your appearance, but of your self-image. As a result, your sagging breasts can make you feel:
- Less attractive
- Less feminine
- Physically worn-out or spent
If this is true for you, then breast lift surgery is not just about looking good, but feeling good about yourself. We can listen to your concerns about your appearance and help you determine whether a breast lift is the right procedure for you.
Causes of Sagging Breasts
While the laxity in your breasts may simply be a result of your genetics, other life events may cause your breasts to lose volume or shape and begin to sag. You may find your breasts becoming looser after you have experienced:
- Massive weight loss
- Aging (loss of elastin and collagen)
Gravity will naturally pull down on your breasts, and over time they will sag. And if your breasts do not have the volume to fill the shape of your skin, the sagging will be more pronounced. Many women with large breasts experience sagging because the weight of their breasts causes their skin to stretch. These women may choose to have a breast reduction which also lifts the breast. If a loss of volume is the primary cause of sagging, breast augmentation can also give the desired results. But for women who are content with their breast size but wish to reverse the effects of aging and gravity, a breast lift alone is usually sufficient to achieve their goals.
Breast Lift Procedure
A breast lift is a more invasive procedure than a breast enlargement. A breast lift consists of removing portions of skin and often some sub-dermal tissue, as well as repositioning (and potentially reshaping) the nipple and areola.
The procedure begins with determining what amount of lift you would like to achieve. For smaller breasts or those with minor sagging, a less invasive breast lift procedure may be used which simply removes a small portion of tissue above the nipple to allow it to be repositioned.
For women with larger or more severe sagging, incisions must be made above the areola and below it. The nipple is raised and sutured to the tissue above it, and the V-shaped removal of skin below the nipple is closed together and sutured to raise the volume of the breast in relation to the chest.
Breast Lift Recovery
The breast lift recovery phase begins when the surgery is complete. Though most tend to overlook this aspect of the process, it can often be the difference between a successful surgery and experiencing complications. Following your doctor’s post-operative instructions is critical to an efficient recovery.
This surgery is generally done as an outpatient procedure, which means the patient is free to return home the same day. But it does not mean the patient can drive themselves. Before your surgery date, it’s important to arrange for a ride home and have someone to assist you in the days that follow while you recover.
Recovery time varies from patient to patient and may change based on several factors, such as the scope of the lift, the age of the patient, and how well they take care of themselves in general.
Some patients are asked to wear a support bra for about three weeks after surgery. The bra accelerates the healing by reducing swelling, improving blood circulation, and providing support to the surgical areas. This also helps solidify the new contours created from the surgery.
Some steps you can take to expedite your recovery are to keep the breasts elevated whenever possible. Sleeping at an incline in the first few days when swelling is at its worst is always helpful. Elevation helps to naturally flush out swelling. You can achieve this degree of elevation simply by inserting three or four pillows underneath you while you sleep.
It’s also a good idea to avoid hot showers during the first week after surgery. Hot water hitting the surgical areas could agitate the tissues and worsen the swelling.
In addition, a proper diet is important. Avoid salty foods and drinks and stay away from smoking and alcohol.
Most patients find they can return to work after about a week, but should avoid strenuous activity, including exercise, for four to six weeks after surgery.
To learn more about breast enhancement procedures or to ask questions about breast lift surgery please contact the board-certified plastic surgeons at Marietta Plastic Surgery today, serving Marietta, Woodstock, and Atlanta, Georgia and the entire southeastern United States.