If you’re planning a breast augmentation you’ll need to factor in planning for your recovery. A mammoplasty is a major surgery that will take you some time to recover from. Understanding the recovery timeline can help you to prepare physically and mentally for the procedure, and how to spot the early signs of complications. Let’s take a closer look at what to expect during breast augmentation recovery.
Recovery After Breast Augmentation: The Timeline
On average you can expect a six to eight week recovery period after your mammoplasty. Everyone is different and heals at a different pace, so your timeline may look a little different.
What To Expect Post-Surgery?
Your mammoplasty will be performed under anaesthesia so you should not feel any discomfort until after it has worn off. When you wake up you’re likely to feel disoriented and tired, and your chest muscles may feel stretched and tight. Muscle aches in your chest should dissipate as the muscle stretches. You may feel nauseous as a result of the anaesthesia, and some pain as the anaesthetic wears off.
Most patients will be allowed to go home after their surgery, but before that, your chest will be bandaged to give your breasts support. Before you are discharged your cosmetic surgeon will explain how to care for your wounds.
The side effects to expect
You will have bruising and swelling in your chest after your procedure. This should improve in the days after the surgery but you will need to take pain medication as prescribed to keep it manageable. Muscle relaxants may also be prescribed to ease muscle aches.
Five To Seven Days After Your Breast Augmentation
It’s normal to still experience a small amount of bleeding three to fives day post-op. If there is an increase in bleeding or if you have any concerns, you must contact your surgeon straight away.
Once the first week has passed, your pain should have eased and should be mild. By this stage, you probably won’t need pain relief anymore. At the end of the first week, you should be able to resume your day-to-day activities but you won’t be able to exercise yet. Avoid lifting your arms above your head, or doing any activity that puts your incisions under pressure.
Your surgeon will have shown you how to massage your breast tissue to reduce swelling. It’s important that you continue to do this even if the swelling is visibly better.
Three To Four Weeks After Surgery
By this point, pain and swelling should have improved and should be very mild. You may still have visible bruising but it should look better. You should still wear a post-surgical bra for added support during this time.
Your surgeon may also give you the go-ahead at this stage to do some light exercise but you must avoid anything too vigorous.
After about two months you will be on your way to full breast augmentation recovery but you may still have some discomfort, bruising and swelling.
Breast Augmentation Recovery Tips
You can take more control over your recovery after breast augmentation by following your surgeon’s breast augmentation recovery tips closely, and by considering this advice:
Rest is the best medicine
Having the chance to rest and sleep can fast track your recovery. Block at least three weeks out of your schedule so that you can take the time to heal. You will have to avoid exercise for at least two to three weeks and when you resume physical activity, it will need to be gradual and under the supervision of your surgeon.
Take good care of your incisions
Your surgeon will explain how to look after your wounds, which may include applying ointment or wearing a bandage. Make sure you do this. If necessary, ask someone else for help.
Make sure your home is ready for your arrival
Do as much as you can to get your home ready before your surgery. Make sure your fridge is stocked up with fresh foods and freeze some home-cooked meals ahead of time so you really can take the opportunity to heal and recover.
If possible get some help at home to lessen your load.
Remember that wholesome real foods (as opposed to convenience foods) can speed up your recovery. Fruit, vegetables and whole grains are full of vitamins and minerals that your body needs for healing.
Wear a recovery bra as directed
Recovery bras have been purpose-built to help you recover after surgery by offering added support.
Make sure you have loose-fitting clothing
Loose clothing that doesn’t restrict your breasts is recommended for recovery after a breast augmentation. Consider button-up tops, which don’t have to be put on over your head, and which you can leave unbuttoned if you need to.
Take your prescribed medication
Medication for pain and swelling makes the recovery much more bearable. You can also use small iced compresses to relieve bruising and swelling, just make sure they aren’t too heavy on your breasts.
For more personalised advice on breast augmentation recovery, it’s best to speak to a professional, who can help you develop a recovery plan. Please contact us for a confidential appointment: (02) 8599 7161.
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