Breastfeeding With Breast Implants: Facts and Myths

Breastfeeding with Breast ImplantsThere is a common myth that women who have breast implants will be unable to breastfeed after having children. In reality, the majority of women who undergo a Tampa breast augmentation procedure will have absolutely no trouble breastfeeding. While some surgical procedures do increase the likelihood that you will have some difficulty breastfeeding, most sub-glandular and subpectoral procedures carry no increased risk.

What Type of Surgery Should I Choose If I Want to Breastfeed?

When you are first planning a breast augmentation, make sure to mention to your doctor that you hope to be able to breastfeed in the future. This can help your surgeon make the best choice and increase your chances of breastfeeding successfully. Most implants are inserted under the fold of the breast or through the armpit, both of which have no significant impact on the ability of women to breastfeed. The only type of incision that carries a significant risk are those known as “smile” incisions, which go around the nipple. Ask your doctor to avoid that type of incision if you know that you wish to breastfeed.

Are There Other Problems Associated With Breastfeeding With Implants?

For women who choose to breastfeed after having breast implants, there are a few concerns. One is that you will experience even greater engorgement than average when your milk comes in. While this may be uncomfortable, it does not pose any actual risk and will not affect your ability to breastfeed.

Another issue that might arise for women with breast implants is mastitis. Mastitis is an inflammation of the breast tissue, and is typically accompanied by pain, fever, and chills. Mastitis is typically caused by blocked milk ducts in women who are trying to breastfeed. It is generally harmless and can be treated with antibiotics. Mastitis also frequently occurs in women without breast implants and should not be a major cause of worry.

Is It Dangerous For My Baby to Breastfeed If I Have Implants?

In the 1990s, there were concerns that the silicone from breast implants, particularly the silicone gel implants, could pass through the milk ducts and be ingested by infants. Studies have since shown that the silicone molecules are too large to pass into the ducts and that this does not pose a problem. It is perfectly safe to breastfeed if you have implants.

If you have any further concerns about breastfeeding with implants, you can consult your plastic surgeon, or your child’s pediatrician. Additionally, if you are having difficulty breastfeeding – a common struggle even for women without breast implants – you can contact your local La Leche League for assistance.

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