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Bras may not be the first thing that you think about when you’re planning breast augmentation surgery, but they will be a key part of your recovery and life afterward. After all, when your breasts change, so will the bras that you wear.
The right bras can help with your healing process and maintain the results of your surgery. The wrong bras – or no bras at all – could hinder your recovery and sabotage your results.
At GraceMed, we offer breast augmentation in Hamilton and at several other clinic locations. If you are considering implants, locate the clinic closest to you to book a consultation. Our specialists are available to help you weigh your options and explain what you can expect post-breast augmentation.
The reality is your bra post augmentation will have a significant impact on your healing, comfort and overall lifestyle. Fortunately, with the right education, you can plan ahead.
Here’s everything you need to know about choosing and wearing bras after breast augmentation surgery.
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Wearing Bras During Recovery After Breast Augmentation
Why Do You Need to Wear a Bra After Surgery?
A bra is a crucial part of breast augmentation recovery because implants need to form capsules around themselves to stay in place. These capsules don’t form immediately after surgery — they actually take several weeks. A bra will help the implants settle in the right position while the capsules form.
Without a bra, the implants could shift when the patient is moving, sitting or sleeping. The implants could move downward and under the fold of the breast, they could shift sideways toward the armpits, or they could rotate. This change would be very noticeable with teardrop-shaped implants.
If these problems go unaddressed during the first few weeks of recovery, the capsules will form around the implants, forcing the implants to settle in these uneven and undesirable positions. This implant displacement may need to be fixed through corrective surgery.
The right post breast augmentation bra can prevent implant displacement. It will minimize the effects of gravity and physical movement so that the implants don’t shift. Instead, the implants will stay in the correct positions as the capsules form around them.
What Bras Should You Wear Right After Surgery?
Post-Surgical Compression Bras
The best bra to wear after breast augmentation depends on the stage of recovery. The best bra for patients to wear right after breast augmentation is a post-surgical compression bra. The patient should wear it all day until their surgeon looks over the healed surgical sites and suggests changing to a different type of bra.
A compression bra has specialized fabric that creates gentle pressure in strategic areas of the chest and underarms. The pressure massages the lymph vessels, which keeps lymph fluid from building up at the surgical sites and prevents excessive swelling and complications like lymphedema.
Compression garments are also used to improve blood flow. Increased blood flow can speed up cell renewal and tissue repair, meaning that patients will heal from the surgery faster.
If you are looking for compression bras in Burlington, BodyMed Boutique is a local store that specializes in compression bras, binders and other garments for after breast augmentations, reductions, reconstruction surgeries, and more.
After several weeks of wearing a compression bra, patients might be given the green light to switch to a sports bra. Sports bras are great bras to wear after breast augmentation because they’re comfortable and supportive. They’re often made of stretchy, soft fabric, which means they won’t irritate incisions. They also prevent any bouncing or movement, which means they will keep implants firmly in place.
Patients should make sure that they buy a few sports bras before undergoing their breast augmentation surgery, as these will help them during their recovery. When shopping for these new sports bras, patients should look for the following features:
- Adjustable straps to help with changes in swelling. Ideally, it should have straps that can be adjusted without having to take off the bra.
- Thick straps made for effective support.
- Front closure so that it’s easier to slip on and off.
- A low band that won’t irritate surgical incision scars.
- Soft, comfortable fabric.
- No underwires.
- No additional padding.
Patients should make sure to buy sports bras that are bigger than their current bust. The new size should be large enough to accommodate their newer size after breast augmentation, along with any additional swelling.
What Bras Shouldn’t You Wear During Recovery?
Patients should avoid wearing underwire bras directly after their surgery because underwire bras can stop implants from settling in the appropriate position. They can also irritate the incision scars and prevent them from healing properly — this is especially true for inframammary incisions (below the breast) or transaxillary incisions (in the armpit).
Push-up bras are meant to shift the breast tissue upward to enhance the cleavage. This is not useful directly after a breast augmentation.
Pushing your breast tissue upward could shift the placement of the implants and could also put stress on your incisions and disrupt the healing process.
A strapless bra is meant to support breasts without any shoulder straps. These often put more pressure onto the breasts and underarms in order to stay firmly in place. This can be uncomfortable during recovery and can affect the placement of the implants.
Patients should avoid these types of bras for several months. Their surgeon will let them know when it’s completely safe to wear them again.
Sleeping with a Bra On
Patients are recommended to keep their bras on day and night during their recovery. This means sleeping with a post-surgical compression or sports bra on. Breast implants can shift when patients toss and turn in bed without them even realizing it, and these bras can keep implants in place throughout the night.
Sleeping positions can also cause displacement. Patients who sleep on their stomachs or sides are advised to switch up their preferred positions during their recovery and sleep supine (on their backs) instead. Sleeping supine will lower the risk of implant shifting, asymmetric swelling and irritation to the surgical sites.
Wearing Bras After Recovery
After weeks of wearing post-surgical compression bras and sports bras, the patient’s incision scars will heal, and their implants will settle in place. Once they’ve reached this point of recovery, their surgeon will give them the green light to wear the bras that they want. They can wear underwire bras, push-up bras, strapless bras and more.
The only choice that isn’t necessarily recommended after the recovery period is going braless. Going braless occasionally is fine, but regularly is not advised.
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Why Is Wearing a Bra After Breast Augmentation Important?
One myth that seems to follow breast augmentations is that they make breasts permanently perky. It may appear that way because breast implants look noticeably high and firm right after surgery. However, this is a temporary feature. Implants will eventually settle and soften — this is often called the drop and fluff period.
Breast implants are not self-supporting prostheses, and there are various reasons why patients will still need to wear bras.
Wearing a bra can be a strange lifestyle change for women who have undergone breast augmentation, especially if they had small breasts before the surgery. Going braless or wearing bras with minimal support may have been the norm for them. The clothing choice was comfortable and convenient at the time.
The larger the breasts are, however, the more support they will need. So, women who have increased the size of their breasts significantly should consider wearing supportive bras as much as possible once they’ve finished their recovery. Women who are thinking of having an augmentation in the future should take this factor into consideration when they’re choosing breast implant sizes for their surgery.
Skipping the bra when you have larger breasts can lead to some uncomfortable and unpleasant problems. You might find that your breasts get sore or tender after a long day because they’ve been moving and bouncing freely. You might have chronic pain in your neck, shoulders and back, and you could get poor posture because you’re rolling your shoulders forward and hunching to compensate for the weight on your chest.
A well-fitted bra can help you avoid these problems by supporting your breasts throughout the day.
Pain and discomfort are short-term side effects of not wearing a bra after breast augmentation. One of the long-term side effects is sagging.
Breasts are subject to gravity. Without support, the breasts can pull down on the ligaments and make the skin stretch lower. The heavier that the breasts are, the more the risk of sagging increases. So, women who have augmented their breasts to a much larger size need to think about this when they dress.
Wearing well-fitted bras can stop the breasts from pulling downward and stretching the skin. Wearing supportive sports bras during exercise is especially important. The breasts will pull more at the ligaments when you’re running, jogging and doing intense movements.
In cases when breasts start to droop or sag, there are breast lifts (mastopexies). This surgical procedure can remove excess skin and bring the breasts to a higher position. We offer this procedure at our Burlington, Mississauga and North York clinics.
Bras can also help patients maintain the results of their breast augmentations for longer. As long as there are no major fluctuations in weight, the patient can sustain the general shape and size of their breasts after surgery for years. Take a look at the average breast implant life span — this is how long you can expect to keep your breast implants before getting replacements.
Finding the Right Bras
It’s not just important to wear a bra after recovering from breast augmentation surgery. The bra has to be the right fit. Wearing the wrong size and shape for your body won’t offer good results.
Don’t pull a random bra off the store rack or webpage and assume that it will be the perfect pick, even when it seems like it’s the correct size. Factors like the bra material, style and brand will affect the fit.
You can’t be sure that it’s the perfect pick until you’re wearing it in a changeroom. Instead of guessing what bras will fit, go to a lingerie store for a private bra fitting. They will measure your bust, present you with bras that match your size and show you how to make adjustments for a more comfortable fit.
You should also learn some of the signs that your bras don’t fit properly so that you know when to shop for replacements.
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Finding the Right Sports Bras
Finding a good sports bra is essential after recovering from breast augmentation. It can prevent soreness and pain when exercising. It can keep your breasts firmly in place when you’re moving vigorously. And it will be a lot more comfortable to wear during a workout than any other bra hanging in your closet.
Here are some tips that can help you find a supportive sports bra:
- Measure your band size and cup size. Look for bras that match those measurements.
- Try on the bras in the store. If they’re too tight, you should go up a size. If they’re too loose, go down a size. You shouldn’t see wrinkles or gaps in the fabric.
- Look for bras that match your exercise routine (low-impact, medium impact or high-impact).
- Women with larger breasts should get wider straps, front/back clasps and individual cups for additional support.
Breast Augmentation at GraceMed
If you’re interested in getting breast augmentation surgery, GraceMed can help you. We will walk you through what you can expect before and after breast implants to help you get a better idea of what you want and the results that our surgeons can provide. You will be able to discuss factors like breast implant sizes, shapes and other details with the surgeon in person.
As an experienced Mississauga cosmetic surgery clinic with more locations across the Greater Toronto Area, we are able to serve people in various areas looking for different treatments and procedures. We offer various plastic surgery types at our clinics and are happy to help you determine the procedure best suited to your needs and goals.
We frequently offer special promotions and invite you to book a surgical consultation at any of our clinics in the GTA.