In the last few years, breast-related surgical procedures have been on the rise. Yes, most women want breast enhancement (so called breast augmentation, if you want to get technical), but for quite a few ladies out there, breast reduction is what’s needed. Today, more than a million women have breast surgeries annually, and a significant percentage of that is breast reduction.
In this article, we’ll take a look at breast reduction generally, what it is and what the benefits of it are.
What Kind of Procedure is Breast Reduction?
Breast Reduction surgery is a cosmetic surgery where fat, tissue and skin from the breast are removed for aesthetic or health purposes. The procedure itself can last somewhere between 3 to 5 hours, and the patient is given a general anesthesia, which puts them to sleep and removes the physical sensations. The process of breast reduction surgery is then as follows:
– First you visit an accredited plastic surgeon near you for a preliminary consultation, where the procedure itself is explained. The surgical doctor will tell you everything you need to know. You will both take time to determine the desired look of the breasts and, if you do want to proceed, you will schedule a date for the procedure itself. They will also tell you about pre and post procedure cautions, possible complications or side effects and what to expect.
– On the appointment date, you will be put under anesthesia and they will do your breast reduction procedure by making an incision and removing the required amount of tissue before sewing you up. Afterwards, you might stay at the hospital for a day or two, just so they can be sure that there aren’t any complications.
– You will need to attend a few check up appointments and check that you are healing well.
5 Benefits of Breast Reduction
Relieve Back, Shoulders and Neck Pain
Most ladies undergo this procedure because of health problems and issues. The weight of the breasts, with time, can cause a lot of problems to the spine, the shoulders and the neck.
The spine is weighted down, and it’s common for people with big breasts to have curvatures of the spine, and with time develop kyphosis (the weight of the breast is pulling the upper spine forward and gives it unnatural curvature). The neck, as part of the spine, goes under the same pressure and the joints might hurt. It’s also possible that even the best fitting bras can cause bra straps to dig into the shoulders due to the weight of the breasts, causing pain and red marks.
Better Physical Aesthetics
Having proportionate breasts improves your overall appearance, not to mention your confidence levels. If you are particularly slender, having very large breasts can draw a lot of attention towards the chest area, and make it difficult to find clothes that make the breasts look smaller. Often, women with large breasts will try to hide them by wearing baggy clothes, which isn’t exactly the way we want women to feel about themselves. The more flattering shape that emerges with breast reduction surgery gives you a more balanced look overall because the breasts are in proportion with your body.
Easier to find Fitting Clothes
This and the previous benefit go hand in hand. For a lot of big-breasted women, finding properly fitting clothes is a constant problem. Fitted shirts are almost impossible to find – if they are nicely fitted in the breast area, the bottom part is big; if they are nicely fitted in the bottom, the chest part is pressured.
Wearing low cut tops with huge breasts is also a difficult thing to do, because it draws people’s eyes straight to the chest, which can make you feel uncomfortable. Also, bras can be harder to come by when your breasts are particularly large, with many brands not catering to your size.
So, for a lot of women, breast reduction means easier way to be fashionable and wear whatever they like, not whatever fits.
Physical Activities, Exercising and Sports
For women that have big breasts, physical activity and exercising can be a drag. They feel uncomfortable because even a simple exercise like running might be painful. When you run, large breasts can move up and down, causing pain and discomfort (and embarrassment). When you cycle, it might be hard to keep your back straight due to the weight of the breasts. And lifting weights could also be tricky due to the breasts getting in the way. On top of this, finding sports clothes and sports bras that fit can be hard. So, when you get breast reduction surgery, it is easier to work out and improve physical fitness.
The lower part of the breast, as well as the folding part between the breast and the abdomen is subjected to a lot of friction, and thus, skin irritations and rashes. Intertriginous dermatitis, for example, is an inflammatory condition that can occur on folding parts of the skin. It is induced due to a lot of moisture, heat or friction. In rare cases, an infection can emerge, which would require medical attention.
Breast reduction surgery enables easier access to under the breast, making it easier to clean.
Risks of Surgical Breast Reduction
The risks of surgery are not insignificant and so its important to weigh the pros and cons. Risks include scars, lowered sensitivity and nipple numbness (especially in the first period of time after the procedure). The scars from the procedure might, but might not, heal completely. Also, since the breast is also lifted in the procedure, the nipple is moved to the appropriate place, so you might experience lowered nipple sensitivity, which should come back after a while, but that completely depends on your body.
The other problem is that the procedure might not be covered by insurance companies, unless you show damaging and deteriorating health of your spine, shoulders, chests and neck. You should consider this at the beginning and talk to a health insurer or your board certified plastic surgeon, in order to get all the documentation you need.
The next concern for most women is breastfeeding. This too can be talked about with your surgical doctor. The type of procedure, as well as the amount of breast tissue to be reduced, matter. Your doctor can explain it all, and you can agree on the size, without compromising breast feeding.
The last concern is about breast cancer after reduction, but there hasn’t been any research that proves a causal link. Again, this concern can be addressed in the initial appointment with the doctor, especially if you have a history of breast cancer in your family.
For a lot of women, breast reduction means higher self esteem and better physical proportions, as well as more freedom in what they wear and the activities they take part in.
If you would like to find out more about breast reduction, and whether you are a suitable candidate for this procedure, click here.