For women considering breast augmentation, hearing from someone who’s already been through the experience can be reassuring and empowering. The choice to get breast implants comes with a mix of emotions — excitement, apprehension, and a feeling that there’s so much to know.
That’s why we thought it would be helpful to ask our patients to offer real-life breast augmentation surgery advice and devote this blog post to highlighting the experiences of 2 women who underwent cosmetic breast surgery at The Wall Center. They’ve “been there, done that,” so they can give you a good idea of what to expect.
Here, they discuss what helped them during their recovery, how they talked about their decision with their children, and even how it’s normal to have dreams about the results the night before surgery. Both Casey and Valerie underwent cosmetic breast surgery procedures in December 2015 and shared their stories to help women who are considering plastic surgery.
Making Your Choice
Casey chose to combine a breast lift with augmentation after having 2 children. Like many women at that stage of life, she wanted to regain the pre-pregnancy shape and size her breasts.
“Even when I wore bras designed to create cleavage, it really didn’t help,” says Casey.
She did a lot of online research about the procedure, in addition to talking with a good friend who had Dr. Holly Casey Wall perform her plastic surgery. An Alexandria, LA, resident, Casey drove 2 hours to meet with Dr. Simeon Wall Jr. after visiting The Wall Center’s website and reading positive reviews on other sites. She also suggested that women view a surgeon’s before-and-after photos, especially patients who had similar bodies and who had breastfed their children.
Valerie also chose to get breast augmentation with Dr. Simeon Wall Jr. Her sister-in-law had come to The Wall Center for plastic surgery.
“My breasts were deflated, and I wanted them to be just like they used to be,” says Valerie, who was 46 at the time of the surgery. “I wanted them to be proportionate to my body. It was the best decision I ever made.”
Talking About Your Decision
Even though cosmetic breast surgery is one of the most common aesthetic procedures performed each year in the U.S., the choice to get breast implants is a very personal one. Some women are quite comfortable talking about their decision with close friends and family members. Often the most sensitive discussion is with children, especially daughters. Both Casey and Valerie were in that position.
Casey has younger children — who were 2 and 4 at the time of the surgery — who weren’t aware of the situation. But she also had a teen-aged step-daughter.
“Young girls are so worried about their bodies and you don’t want to send them the wrong message,” Casey says about her approach to their conversation. “I explained my decision from more of a medical perspective, saying that nursing a baby causes changes to the breasts and that I really just wanted to restore them to what they looked like before having children.”
Valerie is the mom of 3 daughters, who were all in their teens at the time.
“I was concerned about saying anything to them,” she recalls. “I thought there was no way they could understand my decision. But it would be difficult, if not impossible, for them to not notice the change. So, I told them that this was something I needed to do for myself, that I didn’t like how I looked in bathing suits.”
Despite her misgivings, says Valerie, her daughters understood and supported her choice.
Preparing for Recovery
Worried about the recovery process following breast augmentation? Casey and Valerie both have some very specific advice: Follow your surgeons’ instructions. They say The Wall Center’s detailed post-op instructions, and the accessibility of Dr. Wall and other members of the team, made the recovery process extremely comfortable and quick.
“I had my surgery on a Thursday and was back to work on the following Monday,” says Casey. “I needed very little pain medication.”
Valerie shares a similar story.
“The recovery was great. I never took one pain pill. And I did everything they told me to do.”
Both women say rapid recovery was the most surprising thing about their experience.
Says Casey: “I was surprised–impressed might be a better word–by how smooth and comfortable they made the recovery process.”
You can see a breast augmentation recovery timeline in our related blog post.
Ultimately, both women say they are extremely happy with the results of their procedures. The decision-making process involves more than just the choice to go through with the surgery. During the consultation, Dr. Wall works with patients to choose the implants that will meet their goals and explains the surgery in detail. (You can learn more about breast implants from The Aesthetic Society.)
Valerie says she dreamt the night before her operation that she ended up with breasts that were too big. But that was one dream that didn’t come true.
“The reality is that getting implants changed the way I felt about myself,” she says. “I feel incredible, and I love how I look.”