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, it’s essential to understand that there is more involved than just creating a natural appearance similar to your former body.
Breast prostheses, also known as breast forms, can prevent several health-related issues that may occur after your breast cancer 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 various shapes and styles. 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 for your physical health is often the weighted silicone breast forms. This style can serve your body best to prevent health issues from developing later. However, your doctor may recommend a compression bra or a post-surgical bra with lightweight breast forms in the weeks following your breast cancer surgery.
Learn more about why you should wear a breast prosthesis and a pocketed bra after surgery and how to find the ideal bra and breast form combination for your body.
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 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 lightweight and are designed to match and maintain your balance. Given their weight, silicone breast protheses can provide a more natural feel and appearance.
Weighted silicone breast prostheses 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 preventable issues. Another health problem is balance issues, leading to stumbles and dangerous falls.
Misalignment of your chest wall, shoulders, and spine can occur without the symmetry created by a weighted prosthesis. You may also experience issues with your posture, affecting your walk and overall comfort.
If you’ve had a double 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 the weight of both breasts removed, your posture may suffer, leading to rounded shoulders. Wearing breast forms after a double mastectomy can encourage you to pull your shoulders back to maintain proper posture.
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 they can provide you with a more natural look and feel underneath your clothes to boost your confidence.
At A Fitting Experience Mastectomy Shoppe, we can fit you for ABC Custom Breast Prostheses designed to perfectly mold to the contours of your body. We use state-of-the-art 3D scanning technology to take precise digital images and send the data to a lab where your prosthesis is fabricated to match your skin tone and curves.
Why Wear a Pocketed Bra?
When choosing a breast form, you also need to consider how to hold your prosthesis and bra in place. Pocketed models are the best bras for breast forms.
A pocketed mastectomy bra contains an interior pocket to hold the prosthesis 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 are wire-free bras with soft molded cups for support and shaping. Wider, padded adjustable straps distribute weight evenly across the neck and shoulders. They also have smooth seams to prevent skin irritation at surgical sites.
Breast prostheses and pocketed bras can improve your health, appearance, and self-confidence. The type you choose depends on how much breast tissue remains after your surgery.
Breast forms and pocketed bras come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and colors. Schedule an appointment with a Certified Mastectomy Fitter to be properly fitted.
Best Pocketed Mastectomy Bras
At A Fitting Experience Mastectomy Shoppe, a qualified mastectomy fitter can fit you for various bras to add to your post-mastectomy wardrobe.
Immediately after your breast surgery, your doctor will recommend wearing compression garments, such as a post-surgical bra or vest. These bras apply strategic pressure to critical areas around your chest and underarms to boost blood and lymph circulation. These bras are necessary if you have had a lumpectomy or lymph node removal because these types of breast surgery can increase your risk of developing lymphedema.
While many post-surgical bras do not come with interior pockets, several styles are designed to support lightweight foam breast forms.
The Wear Ease Sydney Bra features bilateral internal pockets to hold lightweight breast prostheses. The high-cut underarms and back provide additional support for breast forms and remaining breast tissue while protecting surgical sites from irritation. It provides gentle compression under the bust and arms, and the fabric is UV protective, so you can wear it as a sports bra while jogging.
Whether running errands, enjoying light exercise, or sleeping, your body needs support. Leisure bras offer the perfect blend of functionality and comfort, making them suitable for all-day use.
Wearing wire-free bras like a leisure bra while you sleep ensures your breast forms stay in place all night long, helping support your spine and alleviate pressure on the neck and shoulders. The Anita Isra Front Closure Bra features a soft, flat Velcro closure that won’t irritate your skin, even if you are a stomach sleeper.
Mastectomy sports bras
Living an active lifestyle is a great way to boost your confidence and support your health after breast cancer surgery. However, you need a supportive bra to prevent breast bounce, damage to your remaining breast tissue, and posture issues.
A sports bra with pockets for breast forms allows you to wear lightweight foam forms to enhance your shape under your workout clothes. A pocketed bra and breast prostheses help you maintain your balance and posture while working out to avoid injuries.
The Amoena Performance Sports Mastectomy Bra is a high-impact sports bra, ideal for any activity, from jogging to cycling to kickboxing. The 3-way adjustable back closure and shoulder straps offer a more comfortable fit, while the sporty striped underbust band comes with a plush backing to minimize chafing.
Seamless t-shirt bras
Pocketed t-shirt bras are ideal for everyday wear. The flat-lying seams enable you to wear your bra and breast forms under tight-fitting garments confidently. The seamless design also ensures that the delicate skin around your surgical sites doesn’t become inflamed.
The Amoena Magdelena Back Smoothing Full-Figure Mastectomy Bra is one of the most comfortable mastectomy bras you’ll ever own. Designed for women of all shapes and sizes, from 34A to 48DDD, the Magdelena features an extra-wide back panel that smooths the area under your arms and around your back for a flawless silhouette. Bilateral microfiber cup pockets securely hold your breast forms, symmetry shapers, or volume enhancers in place while allowing optimal breathability.
Look Good and Feel Great With a Pocketed Bra and Breast Forms
Our compassionate and knowledgeable bra fitters at A Fitting Experience Mastectomy Shoppe can help you find the perfect breast prosthesis and pocketed bras for your body. We offer an extensive range of high-quality, long-lasting mastectomy bras and breast forms and mastectomy swimwear, headgear, and recovery wear.
We work closely with insurance companies to verify your coverage and our online portal ensures that making an insurance claim for your mastectomy products is quick and easy. Contact us to book a professional fitting or learn more about the types of mastectomy products we offer.