Following breast cancer surgery, you’ll have several personal decisions to make, including whether to wear a breast form. While this is a deeply intimate decision to make, it’s important to understand that there is more involved than just creating a natural appearance akin to your former body.
Breast prosthesis, also known as breast forms, can prevent several health-related issues that may occur after your surgery. These range from curvature of the spine to balance issues, all affecting your health and your quality of life.
There is a wide variety of breast prostheses available, including several different styles and shapes. Many are made of silicone and are weighted, while others are made from lightweight foam or fiberfill. Depending on your condition and stage of recovery, the best type of breast form for your physical health is often the weighted version. This style will most likely serve your body best when it comes to preventing certain health issues down the road.
Why Wear a Breast Prosthesis after Breast Surgery?
There are many reasons for wearing a prosthesis after breast surgery. If you have had a partial or unilateral mastectomy, your remaining natural breast tissue needs to be balanced with a weighted breast form that is similar in size and weight. This is required to re-establish your body’s symmetry caused by breast removal. While a weighted form sounds heavy to carry, many are light-weight and are designed to match and maintain your balance.
Weighted forms can also reduce the risk of numerous health issues. Curvature of the spine, muscle discomfort and contracture, and shoulder drop are a few of the issues that are preventable. Another health issue is suffering balance issues, which can lead to stumbles and dangerous falls.
Without the symmetry created by a weighted prosthesis, misalignment of your chest wall, shoulders, and spine can occur. You may also experience issues with your posture, affecting how you walk and your overall comfort.
If you‘ve had a bilateral mastectomy, you may argue that both sides are even, and therefore you don’t need a weighted breast prosthesis. However, as a result of having both breasts removed, your posture may suffer, leading to round shoulders.
Breast forms are an excellent option for your post-surgery recovery, either permanently or temporarily, while waiting for your breast reconstruction surgery. They not only can correct weight imbalances but can provide you with a more natural look and feel underneath your clothes to boost your confidence.
Why wear a Pocketed Bra?
When choosing a breast form, you also need to consider how to hold your prosthesis and bra in place. A pocketed bra is your best choice.
A pocketed mastectomy bra contains an interior pocket to hold the prosthesis, which is sewn into the bra cup. The advantage is that secure placement prevents excessive friction between your skin and the form, lessening the potential for discomfort. It also maintains the breast form’s position to ensure that your silhouette is evenly balanced throughout the day.
Pocketed mastectomy bras are designed differently than regular bras. They have a wider panel under the arms and bust for added support and to hide surgical scars. Most mastectomy bras do not have underwires and rely on soft molded cups for support and shaping. Wider, padded straps distribute weight more evenly across the neck and shoulders.
Together, the breast prostheses and pocketed bra can work wonders for your health, your appearance, and your self-confidence. The type you choose will depend on how much breast tissue still remains after your surgery. Fortunately, both the breast forms and the pocketed bras come in many sizes, shapes, and colors. Schedule an appointment with a Certified Mastectomy Fitter to be properly fitted.
Our compassionate, knowledgeable staff at A Fitting Experience Mastectomy Shoppe can help you find the perfect breast prosthesis for your body and also the best pocketed bras. We work closely with insurance companies to help you get the coverage you need for high-quality, long-lasting mastectomy bras and breast forms. Call (954) 978-8287 to arrange your private consultation.