Can You Breastfeed with Implants?
November 1, 2022
Know the facts. Be prepared. We want to help answer these most popular questions:
- Can I breastfeed with implants?
- Is breastfeeding with implants safe for my baby?
- How will breast implants affect my milk supply?
Let us help you bust through the myths so you can get off to the best start with breastfeeding!
Can You Breastfeed with Implants?
YES! You can still absolutely breastfeed your baby with breast implants.
Most women with breast implants are able to breastfeed normally. The fact is, it’s a misconception that you can’t produce milk with implants or that production will be significantly affected. Women ask if they will be able to produce enough breast milk and if the implants will taint their milk. Most medical professionals recommend waiting until you have finished having children before breast augmentation. This is because pregnancy and breastfeeding can alter the shape and size of your breasts afterward.
Is breastfeeding with implants safe for my baby?
The main concern with breastfeeding and implants is the risk they will burst, leak, and contaminate your milk. Implants can be filled with either saline or silicone, both of which have low levels of toxicity. According to the CDC, there is no contraindication with implants and breastfeeding. The risk of breast milk contamination from implants is extremely low. It’s actually riskier not to feed your baby breast milk than to nurse with breast implants. There are currently no documented reports of infant contamination by breastfeeding with implants.
Will Implants Affect Milk Supply?
The main reasons implants usually do not affect breast milk production and the ability to breastfeed is that breast implants are typically placed behind the milk glands or beneath chest muscles. Therefore, the implants do not interfere with mammary glands or milk ducts, so production and secretion aren’t hindered.
Incision location also plays an important role. When an incision is made under the breast, breastfeeding interference is less likely.
Everyone’s body is different, and ultimately we won’t know until after the baby’s born and you start making milk whether you will have low milk supply. Most moms with implants make plenty of milk and never need to supplement.
Tips for Breastfeeding with Implants
There are several things you can do to help increase your milk production and help your baby get all the nourishment they need. Here are some tips to help you breastfeed with implants:
- Make sure proper latching occurs. The nipple should also be deep enough into your baby’s mouth that his/her tongue and gums cover at least one or two inches of your areola. Guide your baby forward to your breast. With your other thumb and forefinger, hold your breast in a “C” position; this makes it easier for your baby to latch on. When your baby latches on well, you’ll maximize the stimulation of those nerves that trigger hormones that produce breast milk.
- Breastfeed frequently. Maternity doctors and early-childhood pediatricians recommend breastfeeding 8-10 times per day if possible. This establishes and maintains breast milk production since your baby frequently stimulates those critical nerves. The more your baby breastfeeds, the more breast milk your body will produce and deliver. To increase milk supply, alternate between breasts when you feed. Even if you’re not producing as much breast milk as you think you should (remedies will follow), your baby is still receiving essential nutrients that promote growth and strengthen the immune system.
- Use a breast pump. Emptying your breasts of milk does two things. First, it spurs the production of more milk. Second, it allows you to store breast milk that you or someone else can feed your baby by bottle when you’re not around or, for any other reason, can’t breastfeed at the moment. Pumping and storing breast milk also comes in handy when a baby has trouble latching; using a bottle sometimes works as a critical substitute even as you still try to get the latching-on down.
- Use formula as a supplement. Our society sometimes shames mothers who don’t breastfeed. This is cruel at worst and ignorant at best. Some mothers just don’t produce enough milk, and others have schedules that keep them from breastfeeding regularly. And some mothers find themselves facing both of those situations. Please don’t ever be ashamed or feel like a failure if you have to buy baby formula to supplement your baby’s needs. The reality is that most mothers will use formula anywhere from rarely to occasionally to frequently; rare is the mother that never does. Formula or stored breast milk also provides the possibility of a much-needed date night during this time that often features little romance and even less rest.
- Contact a lactation consultant. If you’re having trouble with getting your baby to latch on, or if you think you’re not producing enough breast milk for your baby, consider making an appointment with a lactation consultant. These are professionals who will safeguard your privacy while also observing how you breastfeed and then provide expert advice on how to get better results. Your doctor may have one on hand or by recommendation, but if not, a quick google search should yield several results!
Schedule a Consultation with Perimeter Plastic Surgery
Dr. Mark Deutsch of Perimeter Plastic Surgery is a double-board-certified plastic surgeon in Atlanta and a recognized leader in the Atlanta area. Dr. Deutsch takes a personalized approach with every patient in order to achieve satisfaction and success with results.
If you are interested in breast augmentation but are currently breastfeeding or considering the possibility of pregnancy and breastfeeding in the future, schedule a consultation with Dr. Deutsch. He will help determine the right surgical plan and timeline for you.
Yes, you can still breastfeed if you have implants. Let’s talk about it today!