Finding a New Bra after Breast Augmentation
Choosing the Right Bra for Your New Breasts after a Breast Augmentation
Buying a bra at any time can be a frustrating and difficult experience, but this can be particularly true after a breast augmentation. Patients have to be sure that swelling is gone and that breasts have settled into their final shape, as well as determine what bra size and styles best fit their new breast shape.
The Right Bra, What to Wear, and When
Right after surgery, patients need to wear a surgical bra, which will be recommended by their surgeon. This bra minimizes swelling, improves circulation, supports the implant during healing, and helps the breast tissues settle into its new position.
After 2-3 weeks, patients can transition into sports bras. Underwire and similarly supportive regular bras will be allowed after the implants have finished settling into position. This can be anywhere from 4 weeks to 6 months, but usually is 2-3 months. Before this period, underwire bras can irritate surgical incisions, causing inflammation and pain, and may lead to noticeable scarring. As many patients experience some loss of sensation, they may not even notice this irritation until it’s too late. Underwire bras may also not provide the support your healing breasts need, especially after you’ve resumed your typical daily routine.
Front closure bras are generally easier to put on and take off than back closure bras, so many patients prefer them at this point, but they’re by no means a requirement.
Some breast augmentation patients may continue to experience some swelling, so their bra size may be larger than their final size. Many patients choose to buy a few bras at this point, then buy more a few weeks later after they’re sure all swelling has subsided. If a patient transitions into regular bras too soon or before they are completely settled, they will find that the bras will fit poorly later. Since the bottom half of the breast that fits in the cup of the bra will open up and become fuller during settling, bras sized and bought too early will feel too small or tight.
In rare cases, surgeons may recommend not wearing a bra at all for a few weeks after surgery; but for the vast majority of patients, a bra of some kind should be worn at all times after surgery, even after the breasts have totally finished healing. Doing so prevents sagging both in the short- and long-term by making sure the tissue in the breast is supported during healing, making it stronger than it would have been if no support was used.
Women should also avoid push-up bras until this point. While it can be tempting to wear them to show off your new shape, push-up bras displace breast tissue, which can tug on incisions and move implants.
Determining Your New Cup Size
Having a bra fitting can be incredibly helpful in determining your new size. A professional at a lingerie store can help you find a bra that gives you good support, a flattering appearance, and proper comfort. There is, however, a technique that can be used to give you an estimate before you hit the shops.
First, use a tailor’s measuring tape to measure (in inches) around the ribcage directly under the breasts. Be careful to keep the measuring tape flat, even, and parallel to the floor. If your resulting measurement is even, add four inches. If it’s odd, add five inches. This is your band size. Your band size should be about the same as it was before your procedure.
Next, measure your torso around the fullest part of your breast. Like before, be sure to keep the measuring tape flat, even, and parallel to the floor. Subtract your band size from the resulting measurement. A one-inch difference indicates an A cup, a two inch difference indicates a B cup, a three inch difference indicates a C cup, and so on.
The straps of your bra shouldn’t dig in, but should be tight enough to stay in place. Tall women may find that bra strap extenders can help them get straps that fit their body without digging into their shoulders. Women with large breasts may want wider bra straps to distribute the weight of the breasts and help prevent the straps from digging in.
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgery, Inc.
If you’re considering a breast augmentation, or any other type of cosmetic procedure, don’t wait to act. Dr. Gabriel Chiu is an experienced and board certified plastic surgeon with many year of experience serving the Los Angeles area. Contact his office at Beverly Hills Plastic Surgery, Inc. today to schedule your consultation and start your journey to a body you love.