Resuming Physical Intimacy after Breast Reduction

The information in this section is made available through the generous support of Dr. Grant Stevens.

Resuming Physical Intimacy after Breast Reduction

We all wonder, but very few of us ask. How long after surgery do I have to wait before having sex? The first person to ask is your plastic surgeon. Many plastic surgeons give a range from two to six weeks before resuming intercourse. The reasoning behind this is that sexual simulation increases the blood flow to the breasts, the nipples in particular, which can be very painful at first.

So, after getting your plastic surgeon's instruction on the matter (and don't be afraid to ask!) it comes down to when you feel ready.

For many of us, our breasts are very tied up with our sexuality. The fact that your breasts are not centerfold material during the first few months of your recovery could make it emotionally difficult for you to resume intercourse.  Additionally we want very much to be 're-accepted' back into our lives by our significant others and are very sensitive about the way our breasts are perceived. Almost any comment made at this time can be construed as non-accepting. Know this and try not to take things to heart too much. It also can be hard for your significant other to see what they perceive as pain on you - the red incisions, the bruising and weeping areas. It can be frightening to others. Be sensitive to this and possibly wait a few weeks before showing your significant other.

We tend to be blind to some of this since we can 'see' the future of them and are so excited. It's a little like bringing home a baby with a reddened face and cone shaped head. We think the baby is beautiful - and she is - but others see the obvious.

Because of the amount of physical and emotional stress that we go through in the time leading up to the surgery and the recovery period, sex may very well be the last thing on your mind.

You might be afraid of doing damage or causing yourself pain.

All of these are very valid concerns and reasons for taking things slowly. Make sure that you communicate this to your spouse or significant other as well. They have a right to know what is going through your mind and that this is not a reflection on them.  

When you are ready to resume physical intimacy, try the following to make things more comfortable:

*  Wear a bra
*  Stay on your back for the time being
*  Create a "no touch" zone
*  Try being intimate in the morning or afternoon, when you are less swollen
*  When all is said and done, rest.

Listen to your body and things will get back to normal.

  • Saturday, 05 May 2012