Side sleep and shower after breast reduction?

Will sleeping on my side hurt the healing process after surgery? I just cannot fall asleep on my back. Also, how soon after can I take a real shower? Thanks!

Doctor Answers 7

Lipo-lift, breast lift, breast reduction, mastopexy, benelli, augmentation mastopexy

I appreciate your question.

I perform a liposuction breast lift that removes tissue from the areas you don't want such as near the armpit and the lower portion hanging near your stomach. Once I use this to shape the breast I then remove the skin to tighten the breast and create a better shape with nice cleavage. Since I perform this less invasively the recovery time is faster. The size would depend on the proportion with your body versus going for a cup size. It works very well if there are asymmetries. I can also use the removed fat as a natural breast augmentation by grafting the fat back into the breast to create more projection or into the top to create more cleavage. This procedure can also be combined with an implant if needed or wanted.  It should not affect nipple sensation, mammograms, cancer risk or breast-feeding. If you gain or lose weight, the transferred fat can do the same.

please speak to your surgeon about their protocols. 

The best way to assess and give true advice would be an in-person exam.  Please see a board-certified plastic surgeon that specializes in aesthetic plastic surgery.  

Best of luck!    

Dr. Schwartz 

Board Certified Plastic Surgeon



Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 91 reviews

Showering and Sleep position

I allow my patients to shower 48 hours after surgery. I recommend sleeping on your back with slight chest elevation for the first week. Side sleeping is fine after that.  It is always best to check with your plastic surgeon for their specific recommendations as they may differ.

Michael Zenn, MD
Durham Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 65 reviews

Sleep position and showering after breast reduction surgery?

It's always best to check with your surgeon about his or her protocol. I advise my patients that they may shower the next day after surgery and that it's okay to sleep in any position they desire as early as the the first night of surgery. None of my patients have hurt their healing process by their sleeping habits. Good luck. For more information on this and similar topics, I recommend a plastic surgery Q&A like "The Scoop On Breasts: A Plastic Surgeon Busts the Myths."

Ted Eisenberg, DO, FACOS
Philadelphia Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 78 reviews

Sleep Position and Showering following a Breast Reduction surgery

Thank you for your question. We advise our Breast Reduction patients that they may shower 48 hours after surgery, and should sleep on their backs at a 45 degree angle for the first 2 weeks. However, it is always best to check with your own personal board-certified plastic surgeon who will have her or his own recommendations for your optimal healing and recovery. 

Susan D. Vasko, MD, FACS
Columbus Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

Breast Reduction

Hi Narniagirl,

Thanks for your question. All surgeons have different protocols of when patients are allowed to do different things. This is more art than science. You should ask your surgeon for specific instructions. In my practice, I allow patients to sleep on their side (but not their chests) when they feel comfortable to do so and to shower three days after surgery. Again, please ask the advice of your surgeon.

Good Luck!

Alfonso Oliva, MD, FACS
Spokane Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 36 reviews

Side sleep and shower after breast reduction?

Since you have a surgeon it is quite important you follow that doctor's protocol, therefor you need to call that office for answers regarding postop activity. If getting a good sleep is an issue I'm sure your doctor will be happy to prescribesome sleeping pills for a few nights. 

Ronald V. DeMars, MD
Portland Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Side sleep and shower after breast reduction?

Congratulations on having undergone the breast reduction procedure. Your concerns are common among patients who have undergone breast surgery; you will be best off seeking responses to these types of postoperative activity questions directly from your plastic surgeon, who knows your situation best and is ultimately responsible for your care. Best wishes for an outcome that you will be pleased with long-term.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,487 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.