Mom Boobs to Beach Boobs: The Summer Prescription
Somewhere between conception and college, the child rearing experience is guaranteed to provide at least three things: joy, chaos, and physical changes. Those physical changes can be gradual or sudden, and one of the most daunting is the onset of “mom boobs.” Mom boobs are exactly what they sound like — they’re what’s left after the careful and considerate act of pregnancy, childbirth, and getting through infancy. Many women simply don’t love putting their usually-deflated and softer boobs back into bathing suits come warmer weather.
“Most women note enlargement during pregnancy and nursing. After pregnancy most patients lose breast volume so their breasts become smaller and the skin looser,” says Dr. Christine Hamori, a board-certified plastic surgeon and the Director of the Cosmetic Surgery and Skin Spa in Duxbury, MA.
And while Dr. Hamori doesn’t believe there are any non-surgical ways to effectively combat saggy breast tissue, she does believe the mom boob look can be treated to restore a more youthful appearance and feel.
“The beauty of the breasts is very subjective and varies from patient to patient. Natural breasts have a gradual slope from the upper chest to the nipple with the most projection just below the areola. There are attractive small and attractive large breasts. Implants can however affect the breast aesthetic giving a more round and projected shape. The options for restoring volume lost are breast implants made of either saline, silicone or gel, or fat grafting.”
The biggest determining factor in treatment is the woman herself. The number of pregnancies, breastfeeding, the amount of time spent breastfeeding, lifestyle, and genetics are all variables that can alter the degree of mom boob severity.
“Since most women have lost breast tissue and want the size and firmness they had before kids, implants are a good choice. Sometimes the skin is so saggy and loose that a combination of breast lift or skin tightening and implant placement is required. In patients that have adequate fat on other parts of their bodies like the abdominal area and thighs, fat grafting of the breasts could be an option. However, studies are still in progress to assure the efficacy and safety of fat augmentation of the breasts. Fat grafting is used extensively amongst breast reconstruction patients. The fat is able to enhance implant reconstruction so as to give a more natural symmetric result.”
“While fat grafting is certainly becoming more popular, many women lose significant weight after childbirth and have very floppy, droopy skin. I believe that implants are a better option. Breast augmentation recovery may also be a bit easier because there is no donor site pain as there is in fat augmentation.”
Aside from surgery, Dr. Hamori stresses the importance of always applying sunblock to even the breast tissue area if sunbathing nude or in summer clothes that offer limited sun protection.
To learn more about breast procedures post-pregnancy, including lifts and augmentation, click here.