When should I replace my breast implants?
One of the most common questions women have about breast implants is how long they last. If you’ve had implants, or you’re thinking about undergoing a breast augmentation, it’s natural to have questions and to want to know if you’ll need to have your implants replaced at some point in the future. Some people go into the consultation process believing augmentation to be a one-time treatment, but most often, breast implants need replacing. If you have breast implants, or you’re thinking about having breast surgery in the future, this guide will provide you with useful information about when to have your implants replaced.
How long do breast implants last?
This is the million-dollar question for many women who are seriously considering breast augmentation. The truth is that there is no universal expiration date for breast implants, and some women will keep their original implants for longer than others. Generally speaking, modern breast implants last 10-15 years, but some women will decide to have their implants replaced sooner. Often, this is a case of personal choice, sometimes an individual may want a larger or smaller implant placed, or may want to switch from saline to silicone, prior to really needing a replacement due to age of an implant. It is also advisable to consider having your implants removed if you’ve started to experience problems with them, or there is a risk of complications, such as rupturing. In this case, your surgeon will be able to advise you whether or not it is necessary to remove and replace the implants.
Will I need to have my implants replaced?
In short, the answer is yes, you probably will need to replace your breast implants. The majority of women who undergo breast augmentation surgery have their implants replaced at least once. At the time of your initial consultation, your surgeon should discuss treatment expectations with you, so that you know what to expect in terms of the look and feel of your new breasts, but also so that you’re aware of what the future holds. Breast implants don’t have a true-life expectancy, as they are usually viewed as a temporary solution. It’s common to have implants replaced every 10-15 years, but in some cases, implants may last a bit longer
When is the best time to have breast implant replacement surgery?
Every patient is unique, and some women will decide to have their breast implants replaced sooner than others. If there is a risk of complications, which could impact your health negatively, it’s often best to replace the implants as soon as possible. This may be the case if there is a chance of rupture or capsular contracture. If the implant ruptures, it can start to leak and deflate. Capsular contracture occurs as a result of the formation of scar tissue, which can modify the shape of the breast and cause the tissue to harden. Some women also consider breast implant replacement for aesthetic reasons. After 5, 7, 10, or 12 years, for example, you might decide that you’re no longer happy with the size or the shape of your breasts. In this case, having your implants replaced might make you feel more confident.
There is no set time for women to decide to have implant replacement surgery, and there are various factors to consider if you are thinking of having new implants placed. The first is your safety. If your implants are causing problems, or they don’t feel right, it’s wise to seek expert advice as soon as possible. If there is an issue, your surgeon may recommend replacing the implants as a priority. The second is your personal preference. If you’ve had your implants for 10 years, and you’re still perfectly happy with them, and they’re in great condition, there’s no need to think about replacing them in a hurry. If, however, you’re unhappy with the look of the implants, or you’re unsure about the size, it’s worth considering a replacement. Speak to your surgeon, go through the options available to you, and take your time to make a decision.
Should I swap from saline to silicone implants?
There are two main types of implants available to patients today: saline and silicone breast implants. Many times, the initial implant placed is saline, due to an individual’s age or physique. These women usually express an interest in switching from saline to silicone implants, mostly because of the more natural appearance of silicone. There are pros and cons of each type of implant, and your surgeon will make recommendations based on your individual preferences, your frame, and the kind of aesthetic you’re looking to achieve. Saline implants tend to be less expensive and some people favor this option as saline is a more natural substance. Silicone implants can provide a more natural look, especially for women who have small breasts and a small frame. Many surgeons can use computer imaging software to show you different types of implants and varied sizes on your frame, and they can also provide you with more information about the differences between saline and silicone implants.
Will I need a breast lift?
Time doesn’t stop when you have breast augmentation, and you may feel that several years down the line, you would benefit from a breast lift. When you have breast implants, your breasts will look fuller and perkier, but the natural effects of the aging process will take their toll. If you’ve had implants for several years, you might start to notice that your breasts appear a bit saggy or that they have changed shape slightly. This is particularly noticeable if you have had children due to the hormonal changes that take place during and after pregnancy, and the wear on your breasts after breastfeeding. If you are concerned about the appearance of your breasts, a breast lift can provide an effective solution. This procedure is designed to remove excess skin and prevent drooping. A breast lift can be performed as an individual procedure, or in conjunction with a breast augmentation surgery to boost the size or alter the shape of the breasts.
As stated, breast implants can last for several years, and there is no absolute time-frame or reason to have them replaced. However, it is highly recommended to replace breast implants every 10-15 years. If you have breast implants, and have concerns about having them replaced, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our experienced Chicago breast surgeon.