Breast Augmentation Alternatives
Breast augmentation has been one of the most popular plastic surgery procedures performed in the United States for years. Many women choose to undergo treatment because breast augmentation can improve the appearance of misshapen breasts, add volume to small breasts or breasts that are different sizes, and create more balanced figures. Additionally, women who enhance their figures by undergoing breast augmentation surgery commonly experience an increase in self-esteem and confidence.
However, breast augmentation surgery is not the only treatment marketed as a way to increase bust size. There are various breast augmentation alternatives on the market that suit a range of individual needs. Though some are effective, others are still being perfected, while still others are misleading or simply do not work. It is important for anyone wishing to increase the size of their breasts to have a thorough understanding of the various breast augmentation options so they can avoid making the wrong choice.
Any cosmetic procedure should be discussed in-detail with a board-certified surgeon with extensive experience in breast surgery. It is important that you choose the right doctor to guide you in your journey toward physical enhancement. We have assembled a comprehensive overview of the various types of breast augmentation alternatives. Review the information below, and contact a skilled plastic surgeon for a consultation.
Women can enlarge the breasts with either saline or silicone breast implants. A small incision is made in one of three locations - under the arm, around the areola, or under the breast at the crease. Implants are placed either above or below the pectoral muscle. The procedure is safe, though like all surgical procedures, it does involve risks. When performed by a reputable, experienced plastic surgeon, the results can be natural looking and beautiful.
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Photo credit: Pacific Plastic Surgery
Breast Implant Revision
The breast implant revision procedure is performed on women that have undergone the breast augmentation at some point in the past, but wish to alter the size and shape of the breasts. or wish to remove them altogether. During treatment, your surgeon will remove your old breast implants and, if the patient desires, replace them with new ones. The surgeon will also remove any scar tissue that resulted from the previous breast augmentation procedure. The breast implant revision procedure is ideal for women who want their implants removed, or would like smaller or larger implants placed. It is also performed on women who have ruptured implants, noticeable scar tissue, or other implant problems.
The breast lift procedure is not designed to enlarge the breasts. Instead, this treatment is performed on women who have sagging breasts. During breast lift surgery, your plastic surgeon will remove excess tissue, adjust the position of the nipple and tighten lax skin to achieve a youthful, perky bust line.
Breast reconstruction is performed on patients that have undergone a single or double mastectomy due to breast cancer. Breast reconstruction techniques differ from traditional augmentation techniques, and the procedure is typically performed in several stages. It often involves placing breast implants to restore an attractive, natural-looking bust line.
Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation
The breast augmentation fat transfer procedure is still being perfected and is not widely performed. The treatment involves the removal of fat from one area of the body via liposuction. That fat can then be transferred to the breasts to achieve a larger size or enhanced shape.
Unlike breast augmentation surgery, breast enhancement creams do not allow patients to pre-select the size of their new breasts. Most enhancement creams contain herbs or plant extracts that are believed to increase the size of the breasts. The problem is that there is no scientific evidence that these ingredients actually work - whether they are applied topically via creams or ingested orally in the form of pills. Experts are also concerned that there have been no long-term studies researching the safety of these herbs. Due to the lack of credible information regarding the efficacy and safety of breast enhancement creams, most doctors recommend that their patients avoid use of these products.
Although breast-exercising techniques will not increase the size or shape of your breasts, they can help keep your breasts firm as you age. Weight training chest exercises can be performed to help maintain perky, uplifted breasts. Women that rely on breast exercises as a means of augmenting the breasts will likely be disappointed by the results and may want to consider breast augmentation surgery to achieve a shapelier figure.
According to folklore, several natural herbs that contain estrogen or mimic the effect of estrogen can increase the size of the breasts if taken on a regular basis. However, no clinical research has shown that these herbs actually work. Further, experts suspect that these herbs could cause adverse health effects if taken for an extended period of time. Doctors recommend that women avoid using breast enhancement pills in the long-term due to a potential risk of side effects.
Breast enhancement herbs that are commonly found in pills, creams, and other products include:
- Blessed thistle
- Dong quai
- Pueraria mirifica
- Saw Palmetto
- Wild yam
Birth control pills contain estrogen and progestin, while breast enhancement pills contain herbs that mimic the effect of estrogen (such as blessed thistle, fennel, fenugreek, pueraria mirifica, and saw palmetto). These products may result in a mild increase in breast size, but they do have their limitations and are linked to some potential risks, including:
Birth control pills are associated with some side effects, including nausea, weight gain, increased breast sensitivity, spotting between periods, and mood swings. Women who smoke, are over the age of 35, or have had certain medical conditions should not take birth control pills.
Women respond to birth control pills and herbal breast enhancement pills differently; the products may result in some breast growth for some women, while others will not experience any increase in breast size. Breast enhancement pills have not been subject to long-term studies testing their safety and efficacy, and are not approved by the FDA.
Breast enhancement pumps consist of two plastic cups that are attached to a pump. Women are directed to place the cups over the breasts and use the pump for 15 minutes, two times per day. According to the manufacturers of pumps, the suction and pressure that is put on the breasts causes them to enlarge. However, doctors say that the pumps could cause excessive stretching of the skin and increase a woman's chances of developing stretch marks or loose skin on the breasts. Further, the pumps will not cause an increase in breast size for a few hours or permanently. If you are 18 years of age or older and are interested in breast enlargement, breast augmentation surgery is the most effective enhancement treatment on the market today.
Find a Plastic Surgeon in Your Area
The decision to peruse a larger breast size is an important one that should be discussed at length with a qualified surgeon. If you are feeling self-conscious about the size of your breasts, it may be an emotionally delicate time when you are susceptible to products making unsubstantiated claims. Remember that when you are considering making changes to your body, following a doctor's recommendation is the best way to get the results you want. When the appropriate treatment is performed, women can enjoy an enhanced figure, a wider array of clothing options, and psychological benefits such as boosted self-esteem and confidence. For more information on how you can safely and effectively increase the size of your breasts, or to schedule a consultation, contact a plastic surgeon today.