Recovery after Breast Augmentation Surgery

Tips and Techniques for a better recovery after Breast Augmentation with Dr Turner

A Breast Augmentation or boob job is a cosmetic plastic surgery that uses either breast implants and/or your own body fat. The popular procedure can help to increase & improve the appearance, size and shape of your breasts. Breast volume lost during pregnancy or weight loss can also be restored. Please note that this procedure alone cannot correct severely sagging breasts, which would need a Breast Lift. Dr Scott Turner is a breast surgery expert and specialist plastic surgeon in Newcastle and Sydney NSW. He uses mentor implants to get the best breast augmentation results.

Preparing for Breast Augmentation Surgery

You can best prepare for a Breast Augmentation by:

  • Doing your Homework about the procedure online
  • Making your mind up about your desired result and implant size
  • Finding the best plastic surgeon available
  • If you have a high BMI you may want to lose some weight as this will help in reducing your risks
  • Providing your detailed medical history to Dr. Turner 
  • Avoid smoking at least two weeks before the procedure
  • Avoid taking aspirin and blood-thinning medications
  • Planning for time off after surgery
  • Preparing your recovery room at home
  • Arranging for someone responsible to transport you home after surgery

Timeline for Recovery after Breast Augmentation

First few days after Surgery

After surgery, there will be swelling and some bruises and tightness around the breasts. You can apply ice packs to the breasts for 20 minutes per hour to minimize swelling and any internal bleeding. Initially, the implants will look high and compressed. Drainage tubes will usually be placed under the skin to collect fluid to help in the recovery. A dressing will be applied to the surgical site for support and to reduce the chances of infection. 

You’ll need to arrange someone to transport you home as you’ll be in no condition to drive, and someone to assist you for the initial 48 hours. You should sleep on your back in an elevated position for the initial few days as it helps with your recovery. 

A compression garment will be provided that you will need to wear for about six weeks. Pain medications will be prescribed to control the post-operative pain. 

A week later

The surgical drain will be removed about a week later. The newly fitted implants will still be high and compressed as a result of which you may experience some tightness. The nipples will appear low as the first few days. Swelling of the breastbone and bruising on the breast should be little to nonexistent after a week. Many patients will feel a sensation of burning or itching as they heal. You may be able to walk slowly a few initial days after surgery and should try little gentle movements first. If this movement causes you any swelling and pain, it is better to stop moving. You should rest and let your body heal and try a few days later. It should be noted that you should not exert yourself physically as you’ll not be able to do a lot. 

You’ll have an appointment with Dr Turner and his team, where your wounds and healing are checked. 

Two to six weeks later

You should be able to resume most of your daily activities, but you should still avoid stressful activities during the second week. Soreness and discomfort will be minimal after the third week allowing you to resume light work and drive. Scars will begin to wane. After the third week, depending on your rate of healing, you may be able to perform some lower-body workout like squats.

You should not attempt any upper body exercises or sit-ups as they will damage or dislodge your implants until recommended by Dr Turner. But commonly, most people will be able to perform upper body exercise after the fourth week and begin running after about 4 – 6 weeks. You should continue to wear compression bra. 

Two months later

Now, you can start wearing an athletic sports bra but steer clear from any underwire bra. The small scars from the procedure will fade and become nearly inconspicuous. 

Check with your surgeon before returning to higher intensity physical exercises. However, you should remember not to cause excessive pressure or damage to your implants that could result in them rupturing.

Six months later

Half a year later, you’ll be able to view your result. The breasts will have moved into their optimal position and will start feeling more normal. Scars from the procedure will be inconspicuous. You’ll be able to wear underwire bras after six months, but you should wear a supportive athletic bra during any high-impact activity.

Tips for faster recovery after Breast Augmentation

1. Prepare your recovery room 

Make a recovery room at home prior to your surgery as this will make your rehabilitation journey a lot smoother. Have all the essential things you’ll need for the first few weeks stored here in an accessible position. It is recommended that you sleep on your back in a slightly bent position. You can use a recliner, or achieve a slightly bent position in bed by using a few extra pillows.  

2. Arrange someone to help support you for the initial few days

It is vital that you arrange for someone to transport you home after the surgery and to take care of you for the next few days. 

3. Eat a healthy diet and stay hydrated

Consume a diet that is healthy and nutritious that will supply your body with plenty of energy to help in your recovery. Consider consuming cashews, almonds, pine nuts, fruits like apples, oranges, bananas, seafood, eggs, rice, beans, and rice during your recovery period. Limit adding salt to a minimum as it can help reduce swelling. 

Keep yourself hydrated by drinking plenty of water, lemon and orange juice. Avoid alcohol and carbonated beverages for the first few weeks.

4. Avoid smoking pre and post-surgery

Smoking cigarettes or vaping can increase both the risk for complications as well as hamper your recovery process producing a poor result. Nicotine causes constriction of blood vessels and reduces blood supply necessary for recovery. You should consider stopping smoking six to eight weeks pre and post-surgery.

5. Get plenty of rest 

Take at least two weeks off from your work and get adequate rest during this period. Mobility will return gradually during this period. Start with gentle movements during this period; try not to exert yourself too much during these two weeks. 

6. Follow the post-surgical care instruction 

The post-surgical care instructions provided by Dr Turner will make your rehabilitation easier. The most important being resting and the use of compression garments. 

7. Wear the compression bra

Your compression garment provides support to your breasts keeping them in place, reduces bruising and swelling, and lowers the risk of seroma. It should be worn for six to eight weeks following the surgery. 

Best tips for a faster recovery after Breast Augmentation

  • Sleep on your back in a slightly bent position
  • Arrange someone to assist you for the first few days
  • Wear your compression garment  
  • Get plenty of rest 
  • Completely avoid physically stressful activities
  • Eat healthy and nutritious foods
  • Hydrate yourself properly
  • Avoid smoking and alcohol consumption
  • Follow post-operative care instructions
  • Don’t use an underwire bra

When to seek medical help

If there is an infection, or excess bleeding at the incision site or you get a high fever then there may be some problem with your surgery. This can result in further problems during your recovery after breast augmentation.

Other symptoms that indicate that your recovery is not going smoothly include: 

  • Intense itching at the incision site
  • Nausea, vomiting, and constant dizziness
  • Loss of sensation of other body parts
  • Excruciating pain 
  • Excess bleeding that doesn’t stop
  • Increased heart rate and difficulty while breathing

You should immediately call and consult with Dr Turner or a medical specialist if you experience any of the above symptoms. 

Do’s and Don’ts during recovery after breast augmentation


  • Have someone to transport you home after surgery
  • Get plenty of rest for the first two weeks 
  • Wear loose-fitting and comfortable clothes
  • Wear the compression garment 
  • Sleep on your back
  • Eat healthy and nutritious foods
  • Stay hydrated
  • Take prescribed medications  


  • Sleep on your stomach or your side
  • Smoke or Vape
  • Consume alcohol
  • Any stressful exercises or heavy lifting
  • Wear an underwire bra

FAQs about recovery after Breast Augmentation

What is the fastest way to recover from breast augmentation?

  • Follow your surgeons recovery intructions closely – Rest and wear your compression garment. Don’t smoke!

Can I lift my arms after breast surgery?

  • No, you should not attempt to lift your arms for at least two weeks post-surgery. 

Does the stomach swell after breast augmentation?

  • Breast augmentation can cause bloating or constipation which may be mistaken for swelling of the stomach. Bloating will last for one to two weeks after the procedure.  Fluids, Fibre and medication may help.

How do you shower with drains after breast augmentation?

  • You should take a quick shower with luke warm water using a sponge while keeping the dressing or stitches as dry as possible. After finishing the shower, you should pat dry the dressing site with a towel. 

How long will my chest feel tight after breast augmentation?

  • Your chest will feel tight for up to six months after the procedure. 

How much time should I take off work after breast augmentation?

  • You should consider taking at least one to two weeks off work after a breast augmentation surgery depending on the physical nature of your occupation.

What happens if you don’t wear a compression bra after breast augmentation?

  • If you don’t wear a compression bra following breast augmentation or stop wearing it before your implant settles in its new shape, there will be a higher chance of malposition – dislocation of the implant from its correct position.
  • In addition to delayed wound healing, swelling may also continue longer, resulting in pain and discomfort and your final results may be delayed

When can I shower after breast surgery?

  • You can have a luke warm shower two days after a breast augmentation, but be sure to pat dry the dressings at the incision site.

How painful is breast augmentation recovery?

  • Recovery from breast augmentation is rather painless. Any minor pain during the recovery can be treated easily with the prescribed pain medications. Avoid overexertion.

What day is the most painful after breast augmentation?

  • Commonly, the first three days are thought to be the most painful days after the procedure. Apart from being sore, you may also feel some stabbing or shooting pains in the breast. 

Can I sleep on my side after breast implant surgery?

  • Sleeping on your side after the procedure can put pressure on the implants, thus affecting your result. So, it is better not to sleep on your side after the procedure. See How to Sleep Better after Breast Surgery.

How to reduce scars after breast augmentation?

  • Here are some ways that may help reduce scarring after breast augmentation surgery:
    • Do not smoke or vape
    • Avoid excessive stress or stretching of the incision
    • Use a support bra
    • Eat healthily and drink plenty of water
    • Avoid exposing the scar to direct sunlight 
    • Take care of your wound – keep it dry and sterile to avoid chances of infection
    • Avoid exercises until complete recovery
    • Consider Using scar minimisation gels and tapes on the incision site

Next Steps

Always Do Your Research

  • Enquire to find out more about your surgery
  • Please read our website to learn more about your intended procedure

Do you need a Medical Referral to see Dr Turner?

  • A GP Referral is required to Consult with Dr Turner (under new AHPRA Regulations)
  • Please obtain a referral from your GP or Specialist if you want a consultation for an MBS item number surgery.
  • Please note that your Medicare Rebates will NOT be claimable without a valid recent Medical Referral

Making The Most Of Your Consultation

  • Please arrive slightly early for your in-person consultation
  • You are welcome to bring a friend or relative to help consider the information and discuss your options
  • Please be aware you may need to undress for a physical exam so wear simple clothes
  • Ensure you also take a lot of notes during the consultation and thoroughly examine all the documents provided

Want more information before scheduling your consultation?

How to Book Your Consultation

  • You can book your initial consultation by paying the $350 cosmetic consultation fee in advance – when you make your appointment


  • To find out more information about surgery you can book a FREE 15-minute phone conversation with our Friendly Patient Care team via Calendly- Book Consultant 1 or Book Consultant 2

Contact us or call on  1300 437 758  to arrange your surgeon consultation in Sydney.

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