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Tips for Choosing Your Breast Implant Size

Breast augmentation is the most requested plastic surgery among women. Last year, nearly 300,000 patients underwent the procedure, an astounding 37 percent increase since the year 2000. Getting larger breasts is not quite as simple as walking into a doctor’s office and saying, “I want this size” though. Choosing the size implant for your breasts requires some serious consideration and basic research. Here are a few tips to help you pick the best size for you.

Understand the Basics of Implants

Breast implants are measured in cubic centimeters, or “CCs” The higher the numbers of ccs, the bigger the implant. Implants range from 150 to 800 ccs of material;about 150 ccs generally equals one cup size.

Implants are available in a variety of “filler” materials, but the two most common are silicone gel and saline. Silicone implants are preformed (filled and sealed by the fabricator) and then inserted during the surgery. This type of implant tends to look and feel more natural. It is also easily customizable in size and shape from patient to patient. Saline implants are essentially the same silicone rubber shells as the gel implants, but are inserted empty and then filled to the appropriate size. They are more easily detected by touch, but they tend to be firmer and bouncier than silicone implants. Each implant type has pros and cons and its own set of risks, all of which will be discussed with you during your consultation.

Start Checking Out Breasts

Many patients will bring in pictures of how they want their new breasts to look after surgery. Take the time to shop around for the best size and shape by seeing how certain sizes look on different women. Some patients even go out and buy a PlayBoy or a Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition to see what breasts look appealing. It may not be the most comfortable thing you’ve ever done, but it will at least give you a basic idea of what you think looks good. Some women are not visual in that way and rather than collecting photos, prefer analyzing their own needs instead…

Assess Your Body Image

Start thinking about your existing body type.Think about the characteristics of your torso and breasts you would like to alter: cleavage, upper pole, projection, width, areola size and position. Some women prefer breasts that are more natural-looking and proportional to their body. Others want breasts that are more obviously enhanced. Yournatural body parameters will have some sort of dictation in what it can and can’t handle, but your doctor will be able to work with you on figuring all of that out.

Research Your Doctor

Many plastic surgeons perform breast augmentations, but not all perform at the same skill level. You need to find a surgeon who is board-certified (by the ABPS, in Plastic Surgery) with extensive experience in the procedure. Check out patient reviews and before/after pictures on the surgeon’s website or on external patient review sites. Don’t be afraid to ask potential doctors about their credentials and the amount of experience they have doing this procedure. Any doctor who knows what he or she is doing won’t be afraid to share this information.

Have an Open Conversation With Your Doctor

Once you have selected a surgeon, you need to be able to communicate exactly what you want during your consultation. Understand, though that you cannot actually always get everything on your wish list.The doctor will give you an honest assessment of what he or she thinks will work best for you in terms of size and materials, depending on the results you want and your body type. However, if you aren’t frank about what you want or how your body functions, you may end up with less than desirable results. While talking about such an intimate part of your body may be embarrassing and uncomfortable, it certainly beats spending money on a procedure that isn’t going to make you a satisfied patient.

Prepare to Be Flexible

Every woman has a different opinion on what they feel will make them happy with their breasts, and that’s perfectly okay. What works for one woman may not work for others. However, you need to be aware that there are limitations to what your body can handle based on your type and lifestyle. For example, if you are an active runner or a kickboxing instructor, you probably don’t want overly large implants that can impede your ability to maintain your exercise routine. On the other hand, if you are a bikini model or a woman who likes to wear low-cut shirts and dresses, you may not want breasts that are too small to fill out your clothing style.

Likewise, there is a limit to how much your body can physically handle with implants. Remember that you are adding weight to the front side of your body. If your new breasts are too large, you could wind up with back problems or other serious issues that will affect your ability to maintain your normal lifestyle.

If your surgeon is experienced, they will have a good understanding of what works for different body types and lifestyles. They will give you an honest opinion about whether they think your desired implant size will work for you and may even talk to you about going down or up a size. Above all, understand that they are there to help you and not make judgments on your desired results.

Basile Plastic Surgery

Here at Basile Plastic Surgery, we offer a free initial consultation so you can meet with our surgeon and discuss the breast augmentation procedure. Dr. Andrea Basile is a board-certified plastic surgeon with over 20 years of experience whose primary goal is to provide the greatest level of patient comfort and satisfaction possible. Our office is located in Naples, FL.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.