Breasts are an inspiring, versatile part of your body. They can make you look and feel wonderful, and when you begin breastfeeding, they become your personal milk making machines. Their amazing, complex network of lobules, glands, and ducts supply adequate nutrition for your baby, but if you’ve had breast enhancement surgery, you might be concerned. Is breastfeeding possible if you have breast implants, or will it hinder your ability to produce milk?
The good news is, it’s totally possible. Romper spoke with International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC) Katy Linda, who says that you can breastfeed with implants, but the type of implants and the type of surgery make a difference. “It just depends on where the incision was, and how many nerves and milk ducts were damaged in the surgery," she says.
The length of time since you had your surgery also plays a part, notes Linda, along with the reason you had the surgery in the first place. “Many women have breast augmentation because of small or uneven breasts,” explains Linda, “which means they may already be at risk for Insufficient Glandular Tissue (IGT) or Hypoplasia.” In these cases, Linda suggests discussing your case with a good team of care providers.
IBCLC Angie Natero tells Romper that many moms successfully breastfeed with implants, with a full milk supply, but ideally, this success happens when the surgery did not involve the nipple or areola. In any case, she stresses the importance of reaching out for support. “I'd recommend working with an IBCLC in pregnancy and after baby arrives, just to assure you are knowledgeable and prepared," Natero suggests.
So your amazing, multifunctional breasts should have no problem providing a good milk supply for your baby, as long as the type of surgery and reasons for surgery don’t inhibit it. Talking to a lactation consultant before your baby is born can give you the appropriate support and tools to enhance your breastfeeding journey.