Choosing Between Breast Enlargement or a Lift
If you are considering surgery to enhance the appearance of your bust, you have several options available to you. The technique that is right for you will depend on the specific issues you are hoping to address and the outcome you want to achieve overall. Of these surgeries, breast augmentation and breast lifts are the most common. Knowing the difference between the two and when it is best to combine them will help you determine which procedure is right for you.
What Is Breast Augmentation?
A breast augmentation is a procedure designed to actually increase your cup size. This option involves placing implants into the breasts to achieve a larger, fuller size. Implants are available in saline or silicone, with saline typically being the less expensive option. However, as some women worry over the potential for deflation with saline, many women prefer the peace of mind of silicone.
Breast augmentation offers several benefits, including:
- Several different shapes and sizes of implants, allowing women to achieve the look they desire
- Less conspicuous scarring for a more natural look
- Increased bust size following the procedure and healing process
What Is a Breast Lift?
If you are more concerned with drooping or sagging of the breasts than the actual breast size, then a lift may be more in line with your goals. Also known as a mastopexy, a breast lift serves to raise and firm the breast to provide a more contoured look. While the result of some procedures is additional cleavage due to the new position of the breasts, this technique alone does not actually enhance the size of the breasts.
Benefits of this procedure involve:
- An effective solution for drooping breasts
- A more natural look and position of the nipple
- Younger, perkier appearance of the breasts
While there are several benefits to a breast lift, there are a few drawbacks worth noting. For example, it is important to understand that this procedure causes more scarring than an augmentation. Likewise, some women are disappointed that the end result of the procedure is not more dramatic, as the breast size does not actually increase with this procedure – only change position.
How to Decide if You Need a Lift or Augmentation
The choice to have any sort of plastic surgery is a very personal one, particularly if it involves a lift or augmentation. While personal taste is a key factor in the decision-making process, there are a few general guidelines that may help you make the right decision for you.
For example, women who have extra skin or excessive sagging in the breasts following pregnancy, breastfeeding, weight loss, hormonal changes, etc. are primary candidates for a breast lift. Likewise, women who have thicker or more elastic skin that seems to “snap back” after these life events may not need a lift. In addition to these factors, some women may simply prefer breasts that are positioned higher on the chest. All things considered, there really is no specific age range or body type that “needs” a lift versus augmentation.
If you exhibit only slight sagging, an augmentation may provide you with enough additional volume in the breast to “fill up” the excess or droopy skin. However, many women find that they actually still do need the nipple re-positioned higher on the breast to achieve a more natural, perkier end result.
Timing Your Procedure
Your doctor will work with you to help you determine which procedure is right for you and will help you achieve the desired results you are looking for. In many cases, women do opt for a combination surgery of both a lift and implants. If that is the case, many times the procedures are done at the same time. However, there are a few instances when it is best to have the procedures done separately. At any rate, whether you are having either or both surgeries, it is typically best to wait until after you are finishing bearing children and at a stable weight to have the procedure(s).
Significant changes in your body weight may, in essence, negate the benefit achieved from a lift or augmentation and create new sagging. It is also important that you understand that depending on your age, even breast implants may not last your lifetime and some sagging may still occur with age.