Women entering their twenties and thirties are finishing their educations and becoming established in their careers. As they reach a point in life where they can afford plastic surgery, one procedure in high demand across the country is breast augmentation. If you or someone close to you has considered breast augmentation, you may have wondered if it would be best to wait until after having children and breastfeeding. This question has become more common as women are starting families later in life than ever before. A panel of breast surgery experts recently came together to discuss the “right time” for breast augmentation.
Breast Implants and Pregnancy
“Implants in no way interfere with your ability to get pregnant, start a family or breastfeed. The thing that does happen with pregnancy, is that you have some amount of breast changes,” explains Dr. Ned Snyder, a board certified plastic surgeon in Austin, Texas. Your breasts change throughout your life and especially during pregnancy. Pregnancy and breastfeeding affect every woman’s breasts differently. Whether you have implants or not, it’s common for a woman’s breasts to get bigger with the weight gain and hormonal changes of pregnancy. It’s also common for breasts to deflate after breastfeeding. Some women’s breasts return to the same shape and size as before pregnancy, while other women are left with smaller breasts. Some women are left with sagging skin and desire a lift after pregnancy, and others have breasts that remain larger after pregnancy than they were before.
Before or after babies?
As every woman’s body is unique, it’s not possible to know with certainty if you might desire breast implants or maybe a breast lift later in life after having children. However, it is safe to say that having implants before having children will not interfere with becoming pregnant, the health of the pregnancy or your ability to breastfeed. It’s important to keep in mind when discussing breastfeeding that some women are naturally unable to breastfeed, and that is true whether they had an augmentation done or not.
Dr. Mark Epstein, who practices in Stony Brook, New York, emphasizes the importance of timing the surgery for your life, “If a patient is going to have a family in the near future, I would advise them to wait. If they don’t have any immediate plans, then go ahead and get that breast augmentation.” The experts agree, safety is not the determining factor when deciding the “right time” to undergo breast augmentation.
The decision comes down to how soon you are planning to become pregnant and allowing yourself plenty of time to enjoy the results of the augmentation before your body goes through the major changes of pregnancy. Dr. Shaun Parson of Scottsdale, Arizona adds, “If you’re just getting ready to start a family, you’re going to have a massive weight change. We don’t want to achieve an amazing result, and then everything gets changed in the next few months following surgery.” Pregnancy may impact the results of your breast augmentation, but not necessarily. If you’re considering breast augmentation and have no immediate plans to have children, the next step is to have a consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon who can walk you safely through the procedure to achieve the breasts you’ve always desired.