When choosing breast implants, many women focus on size alone. While size definitely matters, profile is also important, especially if you have a very slender frame. The profile of an implant may make a difference between whether or not your implants are proportionate to your ribcage. Breast implants are available in several profiles:
- Low profile
- Moderate profile
- Moderate PLUS profile (available from Mentor)
- High profile
An implant’s profile refers to its forward projection. The higher an implant’s profile, the more it will project away from your chest. If you have a petite frame and you want voluptuous curves, your plastic surgeon may recommend that you choose an implant with a lower volume in cc’s and a high profile. When a smaller implant with a high profile is placed on your body, its width at the base won’t exceed the diameter of your breasts.
Some plastic surgeons prefer the low- or moderate-profile options because they believe that these implants have a more aesthetically pleasing slope and look more like natural breasts. However, every woman’s definitions of “natural” and “aesthetically pleasing” are different. If you prefer more forward projection, a high-profile implant may be the right choice for you.
Most women who have breast augmentation choose moderate-profile implants to achieve volume with more subtle projection. But if you’re looking for a youthful, “perky” silhouette, high-profile implants may be the perfect choice. As an added benefit, high-profile saline implants may produce less visible rippling than their moderate- or low-profile counterparts. As you review your options with your plastic surgeon, think about:
- Your body type. Your implant shape and size should complement your figure. Your plastic surgeon may use sizers, or temporary implants, to help you decide which size and profile are most flattering to your body.
- Your chest width. If your implants are wider than your own breast tissue, the implants may extend too far over the rib cage or create too much cleavage. An excessively wide implant can also interfere with arm movement.
- Implant placement. When a breast implant is placed under the chest muscle, some of the projection is lost. The slope of a high-profile implant will look more subtle if it’s lodged under your muscle tissue.
If you have a clear vision of how you want your breasts to look and feel after augmentation, you’re more likely to be happy with the results. Experiment with different implant sizes and profiles before you make this important decision.
The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery reports that breast enhancement surgery is more popular in the Western U.S. than in any other region of the country—not just in image-conscious California, but in states like Nevada, Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico, Idaho, Utah and Hawaii. According to the ASAPS, 38% of breast augmentation surgeries are performed in the West. Why are more Westerners having breast enhancement surgery than women in the Northeast, the Midwest or the South?
- The Hollywood factor. Out of all the Western women having breast enhancement surgery, there’s no doubt that a significant percentage live in California. Whether or not you work in the entertainment industry in CA, image is important, and plastic surgery is widely accepted as a way to enhance your looks. The popularity of breast implants on the West Coast has promoted acceptance of breast augmentation throughout the Western states.
- The active lifestyle. States like Nevada, California, Utah and Washington are known for outdoor recreation and healthy living. For many women in the West, taking care of their bodies is a top priority, and breast enhancement surgery may be a natural extension of their efforts to look their best.
- The temperate climate. In states where the weather is warm and sunny throughout the year, tank tops and sundresses are more popular than bulky sweaters. When you spend a lot of time wearing form-fitting clothes, you’re more likely to notice the way your breasts look and feel.
- The frontier spirit. Since the 1800s, settlers of the American West have had a reputation for independence and individuality. The West has traditionally been known as a place where you could go to reinvent yourself. What better way to redefine your body than with breast enhancement surgery?
We know that plastic surgery is growing in popularity all over the world, for both sexes and all ages but an interesting recent trend is that more and more high school graduates are getting plastic surgery procedures as gifts. It perhaps should not really come as a surprise in our beauty and celebrity obsessed culture that young people are more frequently asking to get their nose done or their breasts enlarged instead of for their first car or a vacation with their friends after they graduate.
“I’m not shocked completely because there’s a growing trend for plastic surgery in all age ranges,” said plastic surgeon Jennifer Walden. “And basically, with teenagers getting plastic surgery, it kind of goes along with plastic surgery being more accessible, pervasive in our media.”
As they are young and do not yet need the services of a plastic surgeon to fight the signs or symptoms of aging, for teenagers the most popular procedures include:
- Breast augmentation
- Breast reduction
As they are young it is crucial that teenagers are emotionally ready for a permanent change in their body after undergoing surgery. They need to fully understand the implications and seriousness of surgery. In addition, they need to carefully discuss the decision with their parents who should be in agreement and supportive.
It is not a decision to be taken lightly by anyone but for a teenager the change really will last a lifetime so they need to be in full possession of the facts and know it is the right decision for them. There are also practical considerations, like not being able to participate in normal activities in the period following surgery.
“They should’ve researched the procedures out and be able to take the time off of sports, camps, any type of summer school they may be doing to recover from these procedures so they don’t end up with a complication,” said Walden.
Tips for recovery
- Teens need four weeks off sport activities
- They must take off six weeks for contact sports, such as football
- Use sunblock for those sun-exposed areas
- Some good rest and relaxation
In spite of the idealized, airbrushed images you see in magazines or on TV, the number of women whose breasts are perfectly symmetrical is quite small. Most women have one breast that is slightly bigger than the other, and to a casual observer, the difference usually isn’t noticeable. For some women, however, asymmetrical breasts cause lifelong self-consciousness. If your breasts are markedly uneven in size or shape, you may feel uncomfortable wearing snug tops, low-cut dresses or bathing suits. Some women with asymmetrical breasts feel awkward during intimacy and have trouble maintaining a positive body image.
The desire to correct this asymmetry is one of the reasons that women seek breast enhancement surgery. Breasts may be unequal in size or shape for a number of reasons:
- Anatomical irregularity. When it comes down to comparing body parts, most of us have one breast, foot or eye that’s a little larger than the other. Perfect symmetry is actually the exception, not the rule.
- Poland syndrome: This rare birth defect causes underdeveloped muscles on one side of the chest, resulting in uneven breasts in girls.
- Hormonal influences: Girls may have uneven breasts during puberty as their bodies develop. This condition often corrects itself by the time they reach their late teens or early 20s.
- Pregnancy and breastfeeding: The effects of pregnancy can change the shape and size of your breasts, making them look asymmetrical after giving birth or nursing your new baby.
- Cysts or tumors: Many women have fibrocystic breast changes that are completely benign, but in some cases, a sudden asymmetry could be a sign of cancer. Tell your doctor about any new changes in the way your breasts look or feel, especially if the change occurs on only one side.
Breast asymmetry can be corrected by performing an augmentation on the smaller breast or by surgically reducing the larger breast. If one of your breasts is markedly small or underdeveloped, an augmentation may be recommended using a breast implant. If one breast is excessively large and heavy, your plastic surgeon may suggest a reduction. If one breast sags noticeably, a breast lift, or mastopexy, may be performed on that side.
For many women with uneven breasts, the best way to achieve a beautifully balanced look is to perform an augmentation and/or breast lift on both sides. A board certified plastic surgeon will evaluate your breasts, take photos of your body from several angles and discuss your options with you to help you get the most aesthetically pleasing results.