Surviving through breast cancer is no easy feat. If you have made it through such a challenging time, you should consider yourself a powerful force of determination. You should be proud of your body’s ability to overcome such trauma.
Still, many survivors undergo a mastectomy, and that doesn’t make it easy to feel powerful. If you have experienced a mastectomy (in which breasts are surgically removed), you’re not alone. Plus, there are things you can do to reverse any potential shame you might be feeling.
Many breast cancer survivors just like you have chosen to get breast implants. There are many reasons to do so, and it’s overall a safe procedure. If you’re hesitant about going through yet another surgery, though, that’s okay.
The good news is that there is plenty of information available to calm your concerns. Continue reading to learn everything about breast implants after a mastectomy.
Breast Implants Are Common Throughout the United States
Whether or not you realize it, breast cancer implants are rather common throughout the country. In fact, consider the statistics from the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. Their study shows that breast implants were the most common surgical procedure in the year 2017.
In addition, the American Society of Plastic Surgeons adds even more data to reflect the growing popularity within the country. They suggest that the number of breast implant procedures totaled over 300,000 in 2017, which is a 3% increase from previous years.
It’s clear that many women just like you have not only considered the procedure, but they have gone through with it. Even if you don’t know of anyone in your personal life who has, you should do some research. There are plenty of positive testimonies out there.
Different Kinds of Breast Implants After a Mastectomy
For most breast implant procedures, either saline or silicone implants are used. Sometimes, though, a combination of the two is performed.
When it comes to breast implants after a mastectomy, there’s more to consider than a simple implant procedure. It is more of a process in reconstruction since the breasts will have to be entirely rebuilt.
A lot of times, some autologous tissue is used in the reconstruction process. Autologous tissue comes from different areas of the patient’s body to assist in the cosmetic appearance of the brand-new breasts.
In these cases, it’s okay to be somewhat afraid of how it all works. The good news is that autologous tissue is most often used to repair or reconstruct the nipple area – not the entire breast. That means not too much tissue from other locations on your body will be required.
The best thing for you to do is talk to your doctor about whether or not autologous tissue needs to be used. You deserve to move forward with the procedure only when you’re completely comfortable with the entire process.
Factors That Affect Reconstruction
Perhaps the most important thing your doctor will consider is whether or not you will undergo radiation therapy. Some women are lucky to have a simple treatment for their breast cancer. In these cases, breast implants can be done quickly.
Other times, though, you might have to wait a significant amount of time after radiation treatment. Consider that if you get implants and then undergo radiation, the implants might get damaged. It isn’t worth the investment until you and your doctor are both sure the implants will stand the test of time.
Unfortunately, when autologous tissue is required, the procedure will not be as easy. Not only will the procedure take longer, but recovery tends to take more time, too.
There are all kinds of additional factors that contribute to the recovery and ease of breast implants after a mastectomy. The doctor involved with your case will have to think about your age, weight, time since your mastectomy, and general health conditions.
The good news is that in some lucky cases, the reconstruction process can occur pretty much simultaneously with the mastectomy. You won’t know any of these details, though, until you have a thorough discussion with your doctor. Make sure you ask plenty of questions throughout the process for your own peace of mind.
Many insurance policies these days cover breast implants after a mastectomy. It makes sense – implants can be considered part of the breast cancer treatment itself.
Not everyone has this option available, though. If you foresee financial complications of any kind, don’t worry just yet. There may be other options for you to think about.
Perhaps you’ve seen personal fundraising campaigns on social media networks. Even if it might seem embarrassing, you could consider building a similar campaign. Don’t be afraid to reach out to friends and family in your local community to help you with this procedure.
There Are Plenty of Trustworthy Options Available for Your Procedure
Perhaps you do have to wait a while after your breast cancer treatment before getting implants. If so, the good news is that you have plenty of time to research the best options available for your procedure.
If you have the means, you can even consider plastic surgery practices outside of your local area. You just need to make sure you can trust the facility you decide to choose for your breast implant surgery.
Not all plastic surgery offices are created equal. Make sure you look into online reviews, for example, to ensure you choose a trustworthy office. Read more here about a practice that has built a solid reputation in their own area.
It’s Important to Remember Your Health Every Step of the Way
It’s no secret that cancer of any kind takes a toll on the patient and their loved ones. For some unfortunate patients, the trial lasts for many years and costs many dollars. It’s no wonder that many patients start to lose strength as time, and pain, continues.
While you go through the breast cancer treatment, it might be difficult to remember taking care of yourself in simple ways. For example, many cancer patients might have a weird sleep cycle as they deal with this overwhelming challenge.
Throughout the treatment and your eventual breast implant procedure, do your best to remember healthy habits. Some healthy habits, such as a regular exercise routine, might not be possible at all. Cancer treatment and recovery are difficult on the body, so don’t push yourself.
Still, there are other things you can do to keep your physical health a priority. Try to maintain a well-balanced and nutritional diet, for example. Drink plenty of water, get plenty of rest, and find healthy ways to manage your pain.
You Deserve to Reclaim Any Self-Confidence You Might Have Lost
Undergoing a mastectomy, whether a double or single, can be traumatic. Many patients find that they struggle with self-confidence after treating the life-threatening disease of breast cancer.
That’s why many women just like you turn to breast implants for an extra confidence boost. Don’t be mistaken – you’re already a powerful, heroic woman for surviving breast cancer in the first place. You deserve, though, to walk into a room as confident as possible.
For many women, that means leaving a mastectomy alone is not an option at all. This doesn’t make you vain or superficial – it just makes you human.
If you have mental blocks about getting the procedure, consider whether or not breast implants would make you happy. Then, act accordingly, and don’t look back.
You’ll Probably Need a Wardrobe Update
If you’ve lived with a mastectomy for some time now, you probably thought about buying clothes to fit your new body shape. Even if you get implants close in time to your mastectomy, though, you still might need to consider doing the same thing.
It’s likely that after your breast implants, your body will not look the same as even before you were diagnosed with breast cancer. Don’t let this discourage you in any way. You can still look fashionable and stay comfortable with an investment in some new clothes.
Don’t forget to buy all kinds of outfits. You might have to think about new athletic wear or swimwear, for example. Have some fun with this – there are plenty of trendy swimsuit styles that might fit your new body type.
Even if your current wardrobe will work with your new breast implants, so what? It might be fun for you to get a new wardrobe just to treat yourself. You deserve all the happiness you can get, after all.
Continue to Keep Yourself Informed
If you find yourself interested in breast implants after a mastectomy, congratulations. You are on your way to a complete, confident recovery from the cancer you have battled.
We know how important your mental, emotional, and physical health is, especially after such a trial in your life. In fact, prioritizing all aspects of your health and wellness is important at every stage in your life.
That’s why we’re dedicated to bringing you all kinds of information and guidance to better your life and your health. We encourage you to check out our health article archives to continue to stay informed and dedicated to a well-balanced, fulfilled life.