While breast augmentation continues to be the most popular plastic surgery procedure in the United States, more and more women are opting to have their breast implants removed. In 2017, more than 27,000 women who had previously had breast augmentations had their implants removed, according to statistics from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. What’s driving this increase in so-called “explant” procedures?
Like any cosmetic surgery, breast implant removal is a highly personal decision. Some factors that may influence your desire to say goodbye to your augmented breasts include wanting a more natural look, feeling self-conscious about having larger breasts, or even breast implants that have begun to wear out.
The Natural Look
Culturally, the aesthetic ideal of large breasts is still going strong, yet many women may seek a flatter chest – especially as they age. Since the idea of a fit, toned body for women is trendier than ever, women are also becoming much more physically active, participating in intense workout trends such as spin classes or CrossFit. Having large breasts can make high-impact activities like plyometrics, running, and even upper-body weight training uncomfortable and even painful. Large breast implants can impair your ability to live a more athletic lifestyle, and supportive sports bras for larger breasts can be difficult to find.
You may also want to opt for smaller breasts if you have gained weight and now feel your augmented breasts are disproportional to your body. If you got your breast implants and then experienced menopause, you may now find yourself wanting to downsize as the result of hormonal weight gain.
Do you ever feel frustrated when your large breasts prevent you from participating in certain activities or wearing styles of clothing? For example, lacy bralettes and tiny bikini tops are sexy, but they lack the support large breasts require. If you want to wear these clothes but find your breasts spilling out on all sides, it can be very embarrassing.
Disproportionately large augmented breasts can also cause neck, shoulder, and back pain – the same challenges naturally large-breasted women often face, as well. The bigger the breast implants, the further they protrude from the body, putting more stress on your spine.
Your enlarged breasts may also begin to sag as you age and your skin stretches out due to gravity. You may feel less attractive and confident due to drooping breasts and feel that having your implants removed in favor of a breast lift is your best course of action.
Implants Wear Out
Many women are also surprised to learn their implants are not designed to be permanent, and that breast implants require maintenance. Manufacturers of both silicone and saline implants recommend replacing them every ten years.
The FDA estimates as many as twenty percent of women who choose to get breast augmentation surgery experience complications such as implant leakage or rupture, fluid buildup, constant pain or a condition known as capsular contraction, where the body forms thick scar tissue around the implant. In fact, the longer you have your implants, the greater the likelihood that you’ll eventually need to get them removed or replaced.
Are You Ready to Part Ways With Your Implants?
Now, many plastic surgeons are seeing women return to their office to ask for their implants to be downsized or removed entirely. At Virginia Center for Plastic Surgery, we believe being yourself and feeling confident in your natural look can be the sexiest thing there is. If you previously had a breast augmentation and are now considering “explants,” contact our Alexandria office today for results you can feel proud of.