A Breast augmentation or boob job involves the insertion of breast implants made from silicone, under the breast tissue and often under the pectoralis muscle.
Why do I need to wear a sports bra at all or how long until you can wear a sports bra after breast augmentation?
These are common questions when patients are post op and wanting to get out and back into exercise or other social activities.
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– Breast implants at the time of surgery are placed in a tight pocket much like a ‘hand in glove’ – however there are two forces acting on the implant: firstly there is the effect of gravity which can cause the implant to move down (less common if the implants are under the muscle) or move out towards the armpit (when you lie on your back). The second is the action of the muscle and if the implant is under the muscle movement of the arm and especially the chest like heavy exercise can move the implant down and out. This is not only a problem for round implants but also tear drop implants which can rotate and this can create a very abnormal appearance.
– after a breast augmentation a sports bra or wearing an underwire bra serves as an external device to help support the implant for the month after surgery in the position in which it was placed preventing its displacement or movement into the wrong position. This is not absolute and must therefore be combined with reduced activity for the weeks after surgery in the post op ie no heavy exercise or upper body work is allowed for the first few weeks after breast augmentation.
– a sports bra can also help achieve gentle compression and therefore help with swelling and healing process in the first few weeks as the implants settle into their final position and the breast shape changes.
How long do I wear the bra for?
– there is no consensus amongst plastic surgeons as to which approach is best and your cup size or band size will depend on your new bra fit.
– in general the longer the better : the body produces a capsule around the implant and wound strength and scarring increases in the first six to eight weeks. Therefore in these first six to eight weeks in particular, abnormal forces or movement can shift the implant into an abnormal position
– We therefore recommend wearing a sports bra full time for 6 to 8 weeks. This is combined with no upper body exercise for the same period to allow as little movement of the implant in this early healing period.
– it is also wise to wear the sports bra at night for as long as possible and we suggest patients to do this for at least 1 year post surgery.
What sort of sports bra do I use?
– choosing a bra after breast augmentation surgery I specifically suggest in the first 6 to 8 weeks that patients use a bra without an underwire, and one that buckles or zips at the front. An underwire bras can rub against the new wound or scar which is usually placed in the fold under the breast. A front zip or buckle avoids the need to raise your arms above your head to put the sports bra on.
– patients are provided with a surgical bra for use in the post operative period as part of our breast augmentation package however we encourage our patients to have a few spare bras to allow for washing and drying. These additional bras need not be surgical grade like the one we provide – Inexpensive sports bras that buckle or zip at the front can be purchased from Kmart or Target.
– we suggest patients do not purchase expensive bras for at least 3 months post surgery as the breast shape changes as the implants settle in the postoperative period. Swelling of the breasts also changed which can affect final size and shape.
Dr Aggarwal is one of the only Sydney Plastic Surgeons who has completed further fellowship training in dedicated Breast Cosmetic and Reconstructive Surgery. He has also published a CME on Secondary Breast Augmentation in the Plastic and Reconstructive Journal, the premier plastic surgery journal for educating plastic surgeons worldwide.
At Mode we find Breast Augmentation patients some of our happiest patients, as results are reliable, readily reproducible and long lasting. At MODE, Dr Aggarwal will guide you through the planning of surgery, including selection of implants best suited to achieve your goals.
To speak to one of our friendly staff and make an appointment with please call our north shore plastic surgery