Every surgery is followed by a recovery period, the process through which tissue heals and physical function returns to normal. It is understandable that any women considering a breast procedure will want to know how to manage her recovery period. Breast lift surgery is a technique through which excess skin and superficial tissue are properly manipulated and excised as needed to bring the breasts further up on the chest wall. In our experience, there may be certain strategies that can enhance a patient’s overall journey to her better body. In terms of recovery, these can be placed into four categories: pain, scars, exercise, and bras.
Comfort is one of the top priorities after breast lift surgery. Of course, there is bound to be a little discomfort after a surgical procedure due to tissue manipulation. However, the amount of pain that one-person experiences may be vastly different from others. One thing we have noticed among breast lift patients is that their pain level is usually quite tolerable. Strategies to improve post-operative comfort include:
- Talk to your doctor beforehand. You know your pain threshold better than anyone. Discussing your concerns with your doctor allows them to adequately prepare. Prescription pain medication may be an integral part of your initial recovery.
- Use cold compresses, but not for too long. The overuse of cold therapy is one of the easiest ways to actually worsen discomfort. Cold compresses should be applied for no longer than 20 minutes at a time, with at least 40 minutes in between applications.
- Sit and sleep at an incline between 25 and 45 degrees (or upright) to support blood flow and reduce swelling.
- Tips for Managing Scars
- Avoid smoking. Tobacco inhibits healing by blunting circulation and oxygenation.
- Eat well. Nutrients are vital to the healing process. If you don’t already, start taking a good multivitamin daily during your recovery.
- Do not tan. Exposing scar tissue to UV light can cause it to darken.
- Use a scar ointment or cream approved by your doctor.
Exercise and Bras
It can be difficult for many people to give up their beloved daily exercise routine, even for a good reason like healthy, perky breasts. However, recovery from breast lift surgery will go much more smoothly if exercise is avoided for several weeks. Your return to your usual activity level will increase steadily and you should be cleared for full activity after 6 weeks.
Unlike breast augmentation, breast lift surgery does not require you to wear a surgical bra for weeks on end. In many cases, the surgical bra that is placed right after surgery can be changed for a less compressive garment after a few days. Once you take your first shower after surgery, you may prefer to remove your surgical bra and switch to a sports bra that has wide straps and a front closure. Underwire bras should not be worn until ok’d by your surgeon.
The team in our Austin office would be happy to speak with you about breast lift surgery or any of our other services. Call (512) 450-1077 for friendly assistance.