After your breast augmentation surgery, you’ll head home to recover. This no doubt includes plenty of rest, caring for your incision and following your plastic surgeon’s post-op care instructions. In many cases, those instructions will include breast massage. Massaging your breast implants after breast augmentation surgery provides many different benefits and, if instructed, should be considered a part of your post-op recovery. But how does massage help your breast implants?
Massage Encourages Implants to Settle into Place
When you first get breast implants, they will “ride high” and sit slightly above their final placement. It takes time for them to drop and settle into place. Massaging your implants and the surrounding tissue can often encourage the implants to settle and create a more natural look. This is especially the case in women with well-developed pectoral muscles. Be sure to follow the specific instructions and techniques provided by your plastic surgeon.
Helps Maintain the Softness of Implants
Breast implants are a foreign body. Your body will react to any foreign material, trying to isolate it within a barrier of scar tissue, or what is known as a pocket. While this is beneficial for keeping your implants in place, this scar tissue can become hard and even squeeze one or both of the implants, a condition known as capsular contracture. Massage after a breast augmentation helps keep the scar tissue soft and the pocket larger than your implant, keeping your breast feeling soft and natural.
Implant Massage Can Reduce the Risk of Complications
When it comes to breast augmentation, one of the biggest complications is capsular contracture. Once your implants are in place, scar tissue begins to form, creating a pocket that your implants sit in. In most cases, this actually helps to keep your implants in place. However, in the case of capsular contracture, this scar tissue becomes hard and dense, eventually contracting around the implant. This could result in abnormal breast shape and discomfort.
After your procedure, your plastic surgeon may recommend breast massage for the first few months after surgery to try and reduce the risk of capsular contracture. Daily massage can help keep the scar tissue soft and reduce the risk of this happening.
Massage Technique Is Important
Before your breast implant surgery, your plastic surgeon should provide you with your post-op instructions. This will include medication information, rest, exercise restrictions and information on breast massage and techniques. This includes how soon after your breast augmentation to start, how often, and the various massage techniques to use. Be sure to pay close attention to the techniques and ask any questions if you do not understand. The goal of massage, in this case, is to massage and move the implant, not the breasts themselves.
Not Every Implant Needs Massage
While breast implant massage works for smooth implants, you should not massage textured implants. Textured implants require scar tissue to attach to the implant and hold it in a very specific placement. Massage can prevent this from happening. Your plastic surgeon should discuss what practices are best for your particular breast implants.
Dr. Eric Mariotti, a board-certified plastic surgeon, is known throughout the East Bay for his genuine compassion and the remarkable results he creates. Women and men come to his plastic surgery practice in Concord because he is highly trained and experienced, and has a caring personality. His patients think of him as a down-to-earth guy who happens to be a talented plastic surgeon.