For patients who have opted for breast implants, there is a phrase which may seem foreign to them. “Drop and Fluff” does not relate to pillows before bed, but rather a recovery process each woman should know before having breast augmentation surgery. Too often, women are anxious once the bandages are removed, and the swelling subsides. Then they see their breasts do not match the image of what they had in mind before surgery. They ask, “why are my breasts too small and ride too high?”
The best response is, “don’t panic and be patient; it’s completely normal because the process is not over.”
The reason implants sit high and appear small is because they have yet to relax and settle. Breast augmentation recovery is not an instant makeover, but a journey and your implants haven’t reached their final destination. They must “drop and fluff.”
What Does That Mean?
Well, drop means just what it implies, your implants must fall into a lower position. This dropping is true for saline or silicone, round or teardrop. Breast tissue will compress the implants and keep them high and flat. Once your breast tissue conforms to your implant size and shape, gravity will take hold, and your implants will begin to descend and expand.
And the Fluff?
When your breast tissue relaxes, your implants will begin to settle into their proper place and take on their intended shape. They will expand into the bigger, fuller breasts you sought at the beginning of the process.
Can the Process Be Accelerated?
Sorry, but the answer may be a bit vague. Although medication and massage may speed up the drop and fluff process, most of what determines how soon you see your results depend on variable influences. These include implant placement (sub-muscular or sub-glandular), texture, shape, and type.
For example, round-shaped implants will take longer to settle, as does a sub-muscular placement. Women who are athletic with developed muscles will also experience a longer period because the muscle is less pliable.
Drop and Fluff Timeline
The drop and fluff timeline most patients can expect during their breast augmentation recovery is as follows:
The First Week
After the first week, you will experience substantial soreness in your chest. It will feel tight especially while breathing deeply with discomfort on your upper abdomen. Pain meds will be prescribed to manage the pain and discomfort.
Bruising and swelling around the implants is normal, and the implant contour is less defined until the swelling decreases. You may also experience bruising and swelling high on your abdomen.
Weeks Two to Six
Most bruising and swelling will subside after two weeks, and the breast tissue will start to relax. Your implants should drop gradually for six weeks while filling in the lower breast.
Your implants should begin to find their proper position after three months. Although recovery is not over, your results should become apparent and pleasing. The incisions will begin to fade in the following months.
After your recovery is complete, your breasts should appear natural, with an upward curve of the nipple and a teardrop breast shape. Your implants will settle into their proper position projecting a youthful, firm, and larger breast contour. Incisions will fade to pink, then become close to a normal skin tone.
If you are interested in learning more about the drop and fluff process and breast augmentation in general, contact board-certified, Dr. Christopher Livingston today.