Studies have shown that the size of your breasts is not in any way related to your ability to breastfeed. “Breastfeeding depends on [whether you have] adequate breast milk tissue,” says specialist surgeon Dr Sarah Rayne from the Netcare Breast Care Centre. Deformities such as tuberous breasts or absent breasts (amazia) corrected by implants are more likely to cause difficulties, or if breast tissue was removed during cancer treatment or breast reduction.
Can you breastfeed if you’ve had implants?
It is possible to breastfeed after cosmetic implants depending on the method and incision used to place the implant. “Women who had an incision around the nipple as opposed to beneath the breast in the inframammary fold or armpit are more likely to experience problems with breastfeeding because the ducts which move milk from the milk tissue to the nipple may have been cut or scarred,” says Dr Rayne. She adds that the nerve that gives feedback to the breast to make milk may also be damaged, especially if the cut is in the lower, outer quadrant of the areola.
It might be harder to breastfeed for women who’ve had breast augmentation or implants and it may seem difficult because there may be less milk, but with the help from breastfeeding specialists it can be done.
Is it safe for my baby?
Studies have shown that there’s no risk of silicone from implants leaking into breast milk. In most procedures the implant is placed behind the chest wall muscle and far away from the breast glandular tissue. Even when the implant is in contact with the breast glandular tissue or if it ruptures, there’s still no reported risk.
A study comparing the rates of silicon in milk between women with and without implants, revealed equal amounts were found in both as part of the normal make-up of human milk
Breastfeeding after breast augmentation
These tips from Dr Penny Stanway’s book, Breast is Best, can help:
There’s no guarantee that you’ll get breastfeeding right without a little help or instruction the first time. Click here for tips and tricks to help you get started.
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