Post-surgical bras offer support, comfort
If you have just gone through a breast reduction, you may be able to get rid of your bra – at least for awhile – and not just because your breasts are smaller.
Breast reduction surgery is a serious operation. It can be performed in a number of ways, but one of the most common ways is the inferior pedicle technique. This approach means an anchor-shaped incision that circles the areola (the darker skin that surrounds the nipple), extends down to the chest wall, and follows the natural curve of the crease beneath the breast. However, this isn’t the only method. Newer methods, such as the simplified vertical scar method, may mean a more flattering shape to the breast after surgery, as well as less scarring. There are even approaches that use liposuction alone, avoiding bigger incisions.
However, in most cases, this is serious surgery. You’ll likely have a general anesthetic. There are also risks of complications, from loss of sensation to damaged milk ducts and diminished ability to breast feed.
In the end, it’s a personal decision. If you have reviewed your options carefully with a doctor and have decided that this surgery is right for you, then it’s time for the next step. You’ll need to prepare for your post-operative recovery.
After the first 1-2 days post surgery, your bandages will be removed. At this point, it’s time to find the right garment that will support your breasts and minimize stress on any incisions. Keep in mind that whatever you buy, you will be wearing it 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for at least the first 6-8 weeks post-op.
Surgical bras can be a great option. Your doctor will likely be aware of some good brands in this category, and may have recommendations specifically for you.
It’s also true that some women find that a good sports bra is a great choice post-surgery. Sports bras are designed to restrict movement and hold breast tissue firmly. After your surgery, this is exactly what your breasts will need. The issue with many sports bras is that they can be hard to get into and difficult to adjust. When you are dealing with incisions and pain, struggling into a bra is the last thing you want to do. This is why some women prefer a specially designed post-surgical garment – which might not be a bra at all.
For instance, a great choice could be a compression vest. This is more than a bra – it allows you the comfort of a one-piece garment, with a minimum of fuss. Most will close at the front. Some come with hook and eye closing (which seems a hassle) but others are outfitted with zippers for ease. Some women swear by these.
Unfortunately, no one garment will work for everyone. The internet is full of both good and bad reviews for the same bra: it’s no different with post-surgical bras. Your best bet is to talk to your doctor and make sure you buy from a company that stands by their merchandise.
If you have a problem with the garment you bought, you often can’t return it – because you didn’t figure out that you had a problem until after it had been worn and washed. If this happens to you, get fitted by a professional fitter to get some extra help. In every case, if a bra or garment hurts or irritates stitches or incisions, get something else!
You may find that you prefer a snug-fitting bra for some time after your surgery. Women report preferring extra supportive garments for up to a year. If you are one of these, invest in a few – and wear them. Everything you do to reduce stress on your breasts will contribute to a better long term result.
Just because you are decked out in extra-controlling and matronly-looking bras after your surgery, don’t despair! The day will come when you find yourself shopping for lingerie in a whole new size. It will be one of those moments when you’ll know your journey has been worth it.