7 Tips To Reduce Bruising and Swelling after Breast Augmentation Surgery
Global studies have shown that more than 70% of women are unhappy with how their breasts look, and many see breast cosmetic surgery or a boob job as a logical next step.
Breast augmentation surgery is one of the most popular cosmetic surgeries we offer at Coco Ruby. It’s perfect for women who have small or saggy breasts. Not only does a boob job make your breasts bigger, but it can also make them perky and fuller looking. Our surgeons can use either breast implants, fat grafting or both to improve your natural proportions to help give you bigger, smoother, perky and restored breasts.
When performed by the right plastic surgeon, breast augmentation surgery is a safe, long-lasting procedure, with an overwhelming number of patients being ecstatic with their final results. However, before deciding to undergo any form of cosmetic breast surgery, you should be well aware of the recovery process, and how bruising and swelling are a major part of it. Here are some tips to reduce bruising and swelling after Breast Augmentation.
What is Breast Augmentation?
Breast augmentation surgery, also known as a boob job, or breast enhancement, is a cosmetic surgery done to enlarge your breast size and improve your overall shape, contour, and projection. It’s ideal for flat-chested patients or those who want some cleavage to boost their current breast size. Breast augmentation can also effectively help correct breast asymmetry and tuberous breast deformities.
Silicone implants aim to give your breasts both a natural feel and movement and focus on emphasizing your cleavage (upper pole fullness). However, this is not the only reason or type of boob job. Our surgeons also use fat grafting. This involves your surgeon injecting your own fat into your breasts. It’s a natural way to make your breasts larger and can be done either as a stand-alone procedure or in conjunction with breast implants. However, Fat grafting is not suitable for everyone and you will need a consult to determine whether you are a good candidate.
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What to Expect During Recovery from Breast Augmentation?
Breast Augmentation is a procedure that is done under general anaesthesia.
Your first week, especially the first three to five days can be the most uncomfortable. Pain, bruising and swelling is at their peak during this time. This is a natural body response to your boob job. After a week, any sutures or drains (if used) will be removed, and you’ll start to notice that most of the pain, bruising, and swelling have reduced significantly. Most women are comfortable enough to return to office work and light duties at the 7-10 day mark.
In the few weeks following your Breast Augmentation, the pain, bruising, and swelling will decrease. When the time is right your surgeon will encourage you to ease back into your normal daily routine. However, you should hold off on any strenuous activities, jobs and exercise for a minimum of three weeks, if not until you have made a full recovery. Your surgeon will advise you on your situation and healing.
It takes six to eight weeks to fully recover from your breast enhancement, but you’ll be able to enjoy the “perks” of your new breasts a lot sooner.
Why Do Bruising and Swelling Happen After Boob Job?
Any surgery, be it breast augmentation, breast reduction, or breast lift, involves a certain level of breast tissue manipulation. Bruising and swelling are your natural body’s response to any form of “trauma” and you should expect them after your cosmetic surgery.
Bruising after Breast Augmentation occurs as a result of incisions and other adjustments made in the breast tissue. These injuries can damage nearby blood vessels and cause blood to pool out under the skin and into one area, causing the black/purple discolouration you see on your skin.
Swelling (oedema) or inflammation after your Boob Job is also a result of “trauma” done during the procedure. This causes the release of chemicals from damaged cells that increase the absorbency of blood vessels in the area of injury. Fluid accumulated inside the blood vessels, along with white blood cells and other chemicals helps start the healing process.
How Long Do Bruising and Swelling Last After Breast Augmentation?
The extent and duration of bruising and swelling after breast enhancement correlate with the extent of the surgery done, how much tissue is removed, how well you follow your instructions and wearing of garments. For most patients, bruising and swelling reach their peak three days or so following your Boob Job. A significant amount of swelling will start to decrease a week after, and any remaining bruising will dissipate over time along with associated discomfort.
Best Ways to Reduce Bruising and Swelling After Breast Augmentation
Bruising and swelling are the major contributors to your overall discomfort following your Boob Job. Unfortunately, they can last up to several weeks after your procedure, despite them waning in intensity with time. Here are some of the best ways to deal with bruising and swelling after breast augmentation:
After waking up from your Boob Job you’ll most likely notice you are wearing a compression garment – a compression bra. The compression provided by support bras, tapes, or binders/bandages helps accelerate the healing process and is absolutely necessary for the first month or so following your breast surgery procedure. Compression can prevent bleeding and stop blood from seeping out of your blood vessels to underneath your skin, and thus reduces your bruising. It also reduces swelling by promoting blood circulation to vital areas and flushing out chemicals that accumulate near your breast surgery incision sites. This further speeds up your healing process after your boob job.
In the first 3 days after your Breast Augmentation, apply cold compresses like towel-covered ice packs or bags of frozen peas on your surgical site to reduce swelling. Do so at 15 minutes intervals, with 20 minutes breaks in between, several times a day. The cold will cause your blood vessels to constrict, limiting fluid and blood leakage. This not only decreases your swelling but also decreases the size and spread of your bruises. Take care to avoid applying any cold compresses directly onto your Breast Augmentation incisions. This can cause severe irritation to your sensitive skin.
Good Night’s Sleep
Having good sleep hygiene is an integral part of any cosmetic procedure recovery process. Good sleep hygiene does not only involve having your eight hours of sleep nightly but also depends on the position you sleep in. In the first six weeks following your cosmetic breast surgery. Your plastic surgeon will instruct you to sleep on your back, with your upper body elevated at a 30 to 45 degrees angle for safe and speedy healing. This position allows your breasts to be in a relaxed position, with minimal straining on your incisional sites. It causes your blood to shift away from your tender new breasts, not only reducing your bruising and swelling in the process but also alleviating any pain or soreness felt post breast surgery.
Maintaining a healthy well-balanced diet is essential for your body’s healing process after Breast Augmentation. This includes restricting your salt intake, which can otherwise cause your body to retain fluid, worsening both your bruising and swelling.
Having a diet rich in Vitamin K is also important, as it encourages your blood to become “thicker”, thus preventing any further bleeding and worsening bruises. Leafy greens such as spinach and kale are prime examples of Vitamin K-rich foods.
It may come as surprising but drinking lots of water and staying hydrated actually help manage swelling after breast surgery. The more your drink, the lesser the need for your body to trap water inside its tissues. Hydration also enhances your blood circulation, helping nutrients and blood to reach your injured breast tissue for a faster recovery. We encourage patients to drink 2 litres of water daily after their Breast Augmentation.
After your Boob Job, your plastic surgeon will prescribe you a list of medications and supplements that need to be taken. Other than pain relief medication, this list may include Arnica and Arginaid. Arnica, also known as “wolfsbane” is a herb-derived tablet. It has been shown to decrease both bruising and swelling in the week following your cosmetic breast surgery. Arginaid on the other hand is an oral supplement that contains Vitamin C, E, and Zinc. It is designed to promote wound healing. Coco Ruby offers patients our Rapid Recovery pack with suggested supplements
Red LED Light Therapy
Red light-emitting diode (LED) therapy helps breakdown bruises faster for those who wish for faster recovery following Breast Augmentation. Studies have shown that LED phototherapy decreased the time of bruising resolution up to half compared to those who opted without it. It does so by penetrating your skin tissue layers and encouraging the formation of new blood vessels. Coco Ruby offer the Healite LED for faster recovery.
Other frequently asked questions about bruising and swelling following breast surgery:
When should I get a bruise checked out after Breast Augmentation?
- Bruising is normal after any cosmetic procedure, including breast surgery, and shouldn’t be a cause of concern. If you are on any blood thinners or have a known bleeding disorder, you should monitor your bruises closely. Any worsening or persistent bruises (more than two weeks) should warrant a visit to your plastic surgeon.
What cream is good for bruising?
- Arnica can be found in ointment or gel form as well as tablets. It is well known for its anti-inflammatory and healing properties. It reduces both bruising and swelling duration. Other topical creams that promote healing include Vitamin K, Vitamin C, and Aloe Vera. Avoid applying any creams directly on your breast surgery incisions in the first days following your procedure unless instructed otherwise.
Download Our Recovery After Plastic Surgery Guide
Recovery after any cosmetic procedure can be a little bit annoying, however, the results are well worth it.
Here at Coco Ruby Plastic Surgery, we have the best accredited and highly experienced plastic surgeons in Melbourne. They will devise a plan specifically tailored to meet all of your aesthetic needs and provide you with the best cosmetic breast surgery experience. This starts from your first consultation appointment and up to your final follow-up. As well as all throughout your recovery process.
Further Reading – Medical Reference Sources: