Ever thought about getting breast implants but worried you might not be able to breastfeed your baby?

In this guide, we’ll try to answer the question: can you breastfeed with breast implants?

We’ll also dispel myths, explore some facts and empower mothers with the knowledge to nurture their little ones.

The reality of breastfeeding after surgery

Contrary to what you might have heard, having breast implants or undergoing breast reduction surgery does not necessarily mean you cannot breastfeed. During breast augmentation, implants are strategically placed to avoid interference with the breast ducts and mammary glands responsible for milk production. Similarly, breast reduction surgery removes some glandular tissue, but in most cases, enough breast tissue is retained to facilitate milk production after childbirth.

However, it’s important to note that while breast surgery doesn’t rule out breastfeeding, there’s no guarantee of a full milk supply. The type of incision used during surgery can impact the nerves in the breast and nipple that are stimulated during nursing, potentially affecting milk production.

Challenges associated with breastfeeding and implants

Breastfeeding with implants may present challenges for some women, though many breastfeed without complications.

A study involving over 4,500 women with breast augmentation revealed that most could breastfeed successfully, with the primary challenge being insufficient milk production in approximately 20% of cases.

It’s worth noting that the percentage of mothers without implants facing similar milk supply issues is comparable.

Here are some potential challenges associated with breastfeeding when you have breast implants:

  • Low milk supply: Depending on the type of augmentation surgery, some women may struggle to produce enough breast milk for exclusive breastfeeding.
  • Inhibited letdown: Nerve damage during surgery can reduce nipple sensitivity, affecting the hormone prolactin’s release, which triggers letdown (release of milk from the breast) during breastfeeding.
  • Sore nipples: Increased nipple sensitivity post-operation may lead to sore nipples, making breastfeeding painful.
  • Engorged breasts: Implants taking up space in the breasts can contribute to breast engorgement.
  • Mastitis risk: Breast augmentation is associated with an increased risk of mastitis in the first six months post-birth.

Also Read: Breast Augmentation Vs Breast Lift Vs Breast Implants: Decoding The Choices For You

Some frequently asked questions

1. Will breast implants affect my milk production?

The type of incision, location of implants, nerve damage (if any), reason for surgery and the timing of the procedure can influence milk supply. A study found a 75% chance of successful breastfeeding with implants, with the type and location of implants playing a significant role.

2. Could my breast implants harm my baby?

There is insufficient evidence to suggest that silicone breast implants harm infants. No clinical problems are seen in infants of mothers with silicone implants.

3. Are there specific techniques or positions recommended for breastfeeding with implants?

While there are no strict rules, some women find certain breastfeeding positions more comfortable. Experimenting with different positions, such as the football hold or side-lying, may help find what works best for both mother and baby.

4. Can I breastfeed after a revision surgery to replace implants?

Revision surgeries, commonly performed around seven years after the initial placement of implants, may carry risks of further damage to nerves and tissues. However, many mothers still successfully breastfeed after such procedures.

5. Does the size of the implant impact breastfeeding success?

The size of the implant itself does not necessarily determine breastfeeding success. Factors such as incision type, implant location and nerve damage play more significant roles in influencing the breastfeeding experience.

Also Read: How To Choose Breast Implant Size? – Dr Adnan Tahir

Factors influencing breastfeeding success with breast implants

Several factors can influence the success of breastfeeding with breast implants:

  • Type of incision: Incisions around the areola are more likely to damage milk ducts and nerves, affecting breastfeeding. Incisions under the breast or through the armpit typically cause less damage.
  • Location of implants: Implants placed over the muscle are more likely to exert pressure on milk ducts, potentially slowing down milk production.
  • Nerve damage: Numbness or pain in the nipple or breast due to implants may indicate nerve damage, affecting milk supply.
  • Reason for surgery: Underdeveloped breasts or surgery after mastectomy can impact the ability to produce enough breast milk.
  • Timing of surgery: The longer the time between getting implants and becoming pregnant, the greater the likelihood of damaged tissue healing.

Breastfeeding is possible with implants

Breastfeeding is often possible for women with breast implants, but it may come with challenges. Understanding the factors influencing milk supply and seeking guidance from healthcare professionals can enhance the likelihood of a successful breastfeeding experience.

While some complications may arise, any amount of breast milk provided to the baby is beneficial. It’s crucial for mothers or women with future baby plans to make informed decisions about whether to have breast implants or not based on their individual circumstances. You may consult Dr Adnan Tahir, one of the best plastic surgeons in Dubai, for personalised advice on having breast surgery.

Book an appointment now!

Maryam A
Maryam A
2023-09-21
Dr adnan he was very attentive, supportive, caring, and genuinely friendly. He did an amazing job. His nurses Janine and June were amazing helping me prior and supporting and checking up on me afterwards.
Anthony Abi Raad
Anthony Abi Raad
2023-09-12
Highly recommend him as a plastic surgeon!
Derick Simiyu
Derick Simiyu
2023-08-21
I highly recommend Dr Adnan Tahir.
Larry Gurls
Larry Gurls
2023-08-20
I highly recommend Dr Adnan Tahir as one of the best surgeon in Dubai. With his amazing job.
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Emelda Mbonge
2023-08-20
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baba ngu
2023-08-20
I highly recommend the best of the best.
Prince Daniel
Prince Daniel
2023-08-20
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Akwo Esther Fese
Akwo Esther Fese
2023-08-20
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ngomo maxin
ngomo maxin
2023-08-20
I highly recommend Dr Adnan Tahir he is an amazing plastic surgeon .

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