Breast Feeding after implants

One of the frequent questions we receive at Hankins and Sohn Plastic Surgery Associates in Henderson and Las Vegass, Nevada about breast implants is whether or not you will be able to breast feed. Breast implants are not a contraindication to breast feeding, in other words, it is ok to breast feed if you have implants. Incision choice can affect your ability to breast feed, with the peri-areolar incision dividing more breast ducts than the infra-mammary incision. Some women do choose to limit the amount of time they breast feed to avoid “droopy skin” or ptosis of the breast tissue and skin after breast feeding, but this is a personal decision and must be weighed against the health improvements your baby might gain from breast feeding. Whenever you choose to stop breast feeding, here are some helpful hints from just a snug fitting bra.
Place refrigerated cabbage leaves inside your bra for a couple of hours or till they wilt. Cabbage leaves have been used for years to help relieve engorgement. We do not know exactly why cabbage leaves help with engorgement but some researchers believe that there are substances in the cabbage that help to reduce swelling and inflammation. Break up the cabbage leaves so that there are no hard veins in them. Arrange them in your bra so they are comfortable and there are no hard spots pressing against your breast. Do not use cabbage leaves if you are allergic to cabbage or sulfa.
Use ice packs or frozen vegetables for compresses. Use cold compresses for twenty minutes a few times a day. Do not put ice or frozen veggies directly on your skin. Use a towel between the ice and skin. You may have used heat before to relieve discomfort; this is not advised for engorgement. Warm compresses may encourage your milk to let down and increase milk production.
Use an anti-inflammatory medication, such as ibuprofen, as needed.
Do not pump. Pumping will signal your body to make more milk. Your body works on supply and demand. If you empty your breast, your body will think that it needs to make milk. When your breast becomes full it signals your body to make less milk. If you are very engorged, hand expressing milk is okay, but just empty enough to relieve discomfort. There is no point in being miserable while you are drying out.
Drink a few cups of sage tea daily. Sage has properties in it that inhibit milk production.
Do not restrict water intake. Some moms try to dry out milk by drinking less. Restricting your fluids will not reduce your engorgement and may lead to dehydration. Hopefully this helps answer the common question about breast feeding with implants.