Should I Have a Breast Augmentation Before Having Children?

I'm interested in getting implants but unsure whether to get them done before having children. I am 24 years old and about 5.5ft and slim. I would be a 10A to small 10B (NZ sizing). I would be looking at starting a family within the next year or so but really keen to go to a full C as i've never been happy with my size. Would I only lose definition after having children? Or would they sag and change shape or get uneven nipples? Also under the muscle or over which is better?

Doctor Answers 15

Breast augmentation before or after children? YES! (both are OK for the appropriate patient)

Many women wonder if they should wait until their family is complete before undergoing breast augmentation. Certainly, pregnancy and breast-feeding can stretch the breast skin,  change the shape and appearance of the breasts, and cause significant loss of size; this is one of the main reasons many women choose to have breast augmentation surgery.

Should a woman who has never had a child (and plans to in the future), or a woman who wishes to have more children later, undergo augmentation mammoplasty? If your breast development is complete and you wish to have breast enlargement surgery, and then later become pregnant and breast-feed, your breasts will indeed change in appearance, just as in a woman who has larger breasts naturally, becomes pregnant, and nurses her baby.  Since breast implants are in most cases beneath the chest (pectoralis major) muscle, and in all cases beneath the breast itself, the presence of implants does not interfere with the function of the breasts.

Whatever breast tissue a woman has prior to breast enlargement surgery will swell and respond to the normal hormonal changes of pregnancy and later breast-feeding. The degree of enlargement, skin stretch, and later droop or sagging, is as individual as each woman. A patient who had breast augmentation prior to pregnancy may choose to undergo a breast lift when her family is complete, just as the woman without breast implants.  Others may simply choose slightly larger implants to further fill the stretched skin brassiere. 

Or, you can indeed wait until your family is complete, and then undergo breast augmentation surgery, or augmentation plus breast lift (mastopexy) if a lift is needed in addition to restoring volume.

What you need to know is that it is safe and appropriate to choose either way, whichever is best for you.

Breast augmentation does not generally affect the ability to breast feed. One study shows that about 54 percent of women without implants reported problems nursing. 93 percent of breast augmentation patients had their children before undergoing the procedure, so nursing was not an issue. Of the 7 percent who had children and nursed them after augmentation, 50 percent reported problems, essentially the same number as those without implants.

So if you don't mind waiting until your family is complete, and you like how your breasts look now, then wait until your child-bearing years are over to have your surgery. But, you said you have "never been happy" with  your size, and are "keen" to be a C-cup. THERE IS YOUR ANSWER!

No one knows how your breasts will change after breast-feeding; but there will be no shortage of qualified plastic surgeons to address whatever needs you have then! Good luck and enjoy your new look!

Minneapolis Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 255 reviews

Implants before pregnancy

Thank you for your question. Many women will have breast augmentation before and after having children. For women who are actively planning children or plan to have one with a year's timeframe, then I generally recommend waiting. Depending on how pregnancy changes your breasts, you may also consider a breast lift at the time of your augmentation. If you have implants before pregnancy, then you should feel reassured that the implants will not impact your pregnancy, but you breasts may develop some of the post-pregnancy and/or post-breast feeding changes.

Young R. Cho, MD, PhD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 37 reviews

Wait Until After Having Children

If you plan to have children for sure, then it's probably best to wait until after you have them before getting breast implants. This is because many women find that the shape and size of their breasts changes with pregnancy and childbirth. It is very common for women to experience a significant increase or decrease in breast size, and there may be some sagging as well. For these reasons, having a breast augmentation before having children may improve your body contour, however the results may be negatively affected once you get pregnant. Following childbirth, you may find that your breasts are too large or too droopy (which would then require a subsequent surgery to address these issues).

Jerome Edelstein, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 176 reviews

Timing of Breast Augmentation?

Thank you for the question. Timing of the breast augmentation is a very personal decision.  in general I advise patients if they are  planning on having  children in the near future (this is open to interpretation)  to wait on the breast augmentation procedure. Doing it this way will  potentially minimize  the number of operations  that the patient will undergo. The majority of patients who have breast augmentation are able to breast-feed, regardless of the incision site. Best wishes.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,488 reviews

Timing of breast augmentaion

It is fine to have breast augmentation even if you plan to get pregnant in the future. However if you plan to get pregnant right away I would advise you to wait. Pregnancy can change the breasts in various ways . Some women have little change after the enlargement of  pregnancy subsides. Other women get deflated  while occasionally the breasts become permanently larger. You can also have some nipple position changes as well. If you breast feed the nipples may get larger

Ernest D. Cronin, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

Pregnancy and implants

If you are planning to have children soon, then I would wait to have implants.  Your breasts may change shape after pregnancy and may leave you with wanting  additional surgery if you should have them just prior to pregnancy.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Breast augmentation before pregnancy

If you are planning to have a baby soon then I would recommend waiting until you have finished breast feeding.  If you do have an augmentation before you become pregnant then make sure that you wear a supportive bra during pregnancy and breast feeding all the time.  The skin will stretch with the extra weight and you want to make sure that they have extra support to avoid stretch marks. 

Hilton Becker, MD
Boca Raton Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

Breast Augmentation Before or After Children?

If you are considering breast augmentation and think that you might want to get pregnant in the near future, it is best to delay the surgery until after the pregnancy and possible breast feeding.  The change to a woman's body after childbirth is unpredictable.  Some patients have very minimal changes and other patients have size changes, development of stretch marks, severe sagging of the skin and lowering of the nipple.  Your needs might change as well with possible weight gain or other generalized changes.

Elizabeth S. Harris, MD
San Antonio Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Breast Augmentation before pregnancy

If you are planning on becoming pregnant within the year, I would advise against breast augmentation now and wait until after childbirth and breast feeding.  There may be some changes to your breasts following pregnancy, and it doesn't make sense to perform breast augmentation now followed by a possible revision after pregnancy.

Andrew P. Giacobbe, MD
Buffalo Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

Breast Augmentation and Pregnancy

It is both safe and appropriate to undergo breast augmentation before your first pregnancy; just keep in mind that your breasts may change after pregnancy and breast feeding. Whether or not this change will significantly affect your size and shape is not anything that you or any plastic surgeon can predict. However, should revision be needed, there are many techniques available to correct whatever problems may arise. Good luck.

Derek Lou, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.